Norwegian explorer and diplomat Fridtjof Nansen, known to all ski historians as the man that sparked the introduction of skiing as a sport into Europe and the outside world (outside of Norway, i.e.), wrote in his chapter on skiing in The First Crossing of Greenland, 1890 (English translation), about tales of swift skiers in the Kongespeilet, an old Norse treatise, author unknown, believed to date from about 1250:

…[A]s soon as he has bound beneath his feet boards six or eight feet in length, [he can] outstrip the birds in flight, or the swiftest hounds, or even the reindeer… this indeed, is a thing which will seem marvellous, nay incredible and absurd, in all those lands where folks know not the art… who know not that on the mountains there is nothing among things which can run upon the face of the earth which can outstrip or escape the pursuit of that man who has boards beneath his feet…’ 8