Friday, January 29, 2010

Dorworth to explain the ‘Joy of Skiing’

Readings from new book set for Monday at ski museum

Express Staff Writer

Dick Dorworth

When he's not on the ski slopes, Ketchum resident Dick Dorworth spends at least some of his time working on his latest book, "The Joy of Skiing."

Planned for publication this summer, the book is a collection of ski-related essays and fiction written by Dorworth, a well-known ski personality, journalist and author.

"Most of the stuff has already been previously published," Dorworth said. "It's divided into four sections—the spirit of skiing, the people of skiing, backcountry skiing and one piece of fiction."

Dorworth will share some of the essays at a reading set for 5:30 p.m. on Monday, Feb.1, at the Ketchum/Sun Valley Heritage & Ski Museum at Forest Service Park in Ketchum.

"What I read will depend on who shows up," Dorworth said. "But what I think I'm going to read is a little bit about Mammoth Mountain, and I'm going to read a bit about speed skiing and then I'll decide in the moment what else to read.

"A lot of them are autobiography, so they're self-reflective, but they're overall reflective about the endeavor. There's some humor, and some tragedy."

Dorworth, a longtime area resident and former international ski racer, brings a lifetime of expertise to the new book.

"I first came here in 1953 as a young ski racer and I've lived here off and on since 1963. This time I've been here since 1992," said Dorworth, 71, who is originally from Reno, Nev.

"I never made it to the Olympics—and I have a million reasons why not—but I raced all over the world."


In 1963, Dorworth set a world speed skiing record at 106.8 miles per hour at Portillo, Chile.

"The record now, to give you a point of reference, is 156 miles per hour," he said.

Though no longer an international competitor, Dorworth said he continues to ski "virtually every day."

"I've worked in the ski industry for years, but I just ski now for fun."

The "Joy of Skiing" is not Dorworth's first book. Previously published is "Night Driving," which Dorworth describes as "a collection of essays about growing up in America in the 1950s" and juggling competitive skiing with going to school.

He explained that the endeavor often involved competitive skiing one day and driving back home at night to attend school the following day.

"If you were a speed skier, you learned to drive at night," he said. "It's about driving all over the world, at night."

Bring a copy of "Night Driving" to Monday's reading of "The Joy of Skiing" and Dorworth will happily sign it for you.

Terry Smith:

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