Bolens Hus Ski / Diablo Get Together 2009

Waconia, Minnesota – January 31st and February 1st, 2009

We all had a great time at our official 2nd Annual Hus Ski / Diablo Get Together held in Waconia, Minnesota. First off, a BIG “Thank You” to Ron and Nancy Elam from Buffalo, Minnesota (above) for hosting this year’s event. Ron and Nancy attended the Waconia planning meetings, arranged an area for us to meet, planned the day’s events and made up some fantastic name tags for us to use.

Waconia claims to be the World’s Largest Vintage & Antique Snowmobile Event. Midwest Vintage Snowmobile Shows and the Sno-Baron’s Snowmobile Club put on a large event which includes swap meets, the Vintage Trail Ride, Oval and LeMans Racing, Drag Racing, Radar Runs, Vintage Snowmobile Shows, Auctions, Loud Snowmobile contest, Autograph sessions with Ski-doo legends and VIPs and an Evening Banquest. This year’s event featured the 50th anniversary of Ski-doo and much of the banquet and associated activities focused on the Ski-doo theme.

With all that going on, the Waconia team was very supportive of our group. They located us in an area smack dab in the middle of the excitement and we had a large steady flow of people coming through our area and looking at our fine machines. Lots of interest and lots of questions from people who have never seen such unique snow machines to many new acquaintances that came and introduced themselves to our group. Some even got on camera as Harvey Denzin showed off his award winning Hus Ski 600 to Sno-goer Magazine. In all, we had 22 machines to show off and many more owners mulling around the area.

Many of us were local (from Wisconsin and Minnesota), but a few came from much farther away including Allen O from Fairbanks, Alaska, Randy H from Richfield, Ohio, Bob F from Cleveland, Ohio, Jerry E from Forsyth, Montana and Chris D from St. Piere, Manitoba. Following is a mish mash of pictures from the event.

Harvey and Mary Denzin are shown above with their 600. The sled won Best Hus Ski Restoration and Hus Ski / Diablo Best of Show. Jamie Best won the Best Hus Ski Unrestored with his 200 (picture to be added later).

Jim Rickel won the Best Unrestored Diablo with his 502 (not pictured) and Randy Heinle won Best Restored Diablo with his 502 shown above.

Some came to sell a Sled and some came to buy a Sled. Here, Ed Mayo bought Ken’s original 500. Welcome to the club Ed!

Toward the end of the day we took a group photo. Many had left by then, but the rest that stayed and enjoyed the afternoon sunshine finished the day with a group photo.

Following are some other pictures of the trail ride, races and other oddities at the show.

Above are Dave and Renee Peterson. Dave and Renee hosted the 08′ Get Together in Horicon and spent much of the day driving their 502 around the lake. It was a beautiful day for riding.

Mike N from McFarland writes:

The Waconia event was a smash hit.  All the Red and Yellow lined up was a sight for sore Bolens’ eyes.  Probably the largest assembly of Bolens since the factory was still open.  The looks we got at the “Pivoters” were as if Alien craft were on display.
Then came the trail ride.
Two lengths of ride were offered.  One shorty of 5.5 miles followed by an additional one of 12.7 miles.
My girl and  I bravely drove two unproven sleds.  Her on a a ’68 Ski-doo Oly and me on a 503 Diablo.

300+ sleds started out on the sunny Saturday morning along the lake shore.  The cacophony of sounds from all the vintage engines was deafening… in a harmonious and wonderful way.  The leader just set off and the waiting crowd rallied for a position in line.  A blue fog permeated everything as the 25:1 premix majority throttled ‘em up.  50+ sleds peeled off within a half mile, just before leaving the ice as sleds sputtered or untrusting drivers refused the upcoming brutality of on-land riding.  It truly was the “Trail of tears” as 20-30 additional sleds failed along the route.  Ahhh…the cussing and recoil-yanking-helmet-throwers were so reminiscent of the riding days back then.  You just didn’t venture out alone or if riding any distance, you brought along a mechanic who could fix anything with wire and duct tape.  (It was much like what made the early Harleys so popular…You didn’t know if you were going to make it back or not and that made it funner)

A technical description of Diablo trail riding is summed up as simply excruciatingly exhilarating.  25 MPH is tops on flat land and is too fast with constant worries of having to stop for any unforeseen reason.   5-15 mph was max through any roughage.   Upon entering any woopdeedoos that are numerous on any well-used trail, the engine unit is immediately airbourne, which crashes perfectly upon the next bump crest and issues painful noises from the drive line.  Your only option is to add more throttle and hope it continues to pull!  The riding style quickly sums to an aiming and firing of the engine unit, much to the entertainment of all along the route.  Their constant smiles were of fond memories or pity of trail knowledge.  We made it back unassisted but not without two trailside stops for the Ski-doo’s fuel blockage and sticking drive clutch.  We nursed it back and decided to leave the second, longer ride to fresher rebuilds or braver souls than thou.

And at the end of the day_

Randy and Bob tell us to put the covers on our special machines and give them the rest they need.

Again, a very special thanks to Ron and Nancy Elam for hosting this year’s event and thanks to everyone who brought a machine or stopped by to say hi. Here’s to next year!