In 74 I went in to get skis for my team. Fiberglass skis had just come in and they were dumping the wood skis. I asked my friend what they wanted for the skis they were about to put in the chipper, and he asked me how much I had on me - the skis wound up cost $1.79 a pair, and I tool 'em all! I even still have one - the rest got broken over the first year or so.
I didn't buy my first X-country skis until 1978 while living in Germany. They were a fiberglass waxless model, using a fishscale pattern. I taught myself how to ski with them, took to it rather naturally. I could ski half the day, my favorite time being right after a fresh snowfall, before anyone laid tracks. I loved to break trail if the conditions were good, and avoided groomed trails a great deal.
I continued that back in the States of Minnesota and North Dakota. Until one day one of my Army ROTC college cadets, while I had my class out skiing as part of their winter adventure training, got too close to me. He sent his pole spike right into my left ski and shattered the fiberglass. It was only a shell around a rigid foam core, and vulnerable to penetration. I could slowly make it back to the armory, the ski ready to snap. Then I threw them away.
I borrowed some classic skis for the last few weeks of winter, but I wasn't good at waxing. Never acquired the skill of choosing the correct wax for the snow conditions and temps, couldn't get the hang of the technique.
I knew I was being reassigned shortly, which turned out to be snowless San Antonio, Texas. I never got XC skis again, and now I'm too disabled anyway. But I sure loved it while it lasted. Great exercise, and I treated it like hiking and sightseeing, but in the snow.