Ole Hegge, from Bardu in the Troms county far above the Artic Circle, was the first Olympic medalist from the Arctic Region and an extremely talented skier. He was raised in a poor farming family, and became a big local hero by winning many regional competitions. In 1924 his local community started a fund raising campaign to allow Hegge to travel to Oslo and compete at Holmenkollen. He surprised the audience by taking second place in the 50 km race, only defeated by the recent triple gold medalist from Chamonix, Thorleif Haug. He continued the habit of coming in second place in important meetings, doing it twice more in the Holmenkollen 50 km in 1926 and 1928. However, he won the Norwegian championships over 30 km in both 1926 and 1928, and his championship win in 1928 secured him a ticket for the St. Moritz Games. There he won the silver medal in the 18 km cross-country race. Shortly after the 1928 Olympics he emigrated to the United States, but was selected for the Norwegian team for the 1932 Lake Placid Games, where he failed to medal in the 50 km race, missing by only 11 seconds. In the United States he was named “the grand old man of skiing” for his lifetime work of promoting skiing in the Pacific Northwest. After his 90th birthday he visited his birthplace of Bardu in Northern Norway, and was received by his former countrymen as a true skiing hero.