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Lost Areas #11 - Published 29 July 1993

Subject:  LOST COLORADO SKI AREAS  -  EDITION 11

Greetings from THE COLORADO SKIER

Researching "lost" Colorado ski areas is the hobby of THE COLORADO
SKIER.  We are prepared to clarify the history and status of every
dead or lost ski area in Colorado.  There are at least 75 of them.
But that's too many for one posting.  So we pick 5 lost ski areas for
each edition and provide location, statistics, and a little history on
each area.  Then we challenge you to remember five "new" ones.

ATTENTION Swingles:  If you have a limited interest in old Colorado
ski areas, check out our separately posted companion articles
entitled:   "THE COLORADO SKIER - TRIVIA"   (with skiing trivia
questions) and  "THE COLORADO SKIER - SKI NEWS"  (current ski news).

             LOST COLORADO SKI AREAS  -  EDITION 11   

EDITOR'S REMARKS:  

   Thanks for the continued interest in lost ski areas.  However, we
   are running out of LOST COLORADO areas.  See Section 4 for some
   thoughts on, and plans for, future issues.

1.  FIVE MORE LOST COLORADO SKI AREAS

    {Copyright 1993, The Colorado Skier.  All rights reserved.}

CAMP HALE   (Pando), [obscure],  Located four miles west of Tennessee
  Pass (near Leadville) along US 24.  This is where the US Army 10th
  Mtn Division trained to be ski troopers during WWII.  They did
  actually install a T-bar and learn to ski at what is now the COOPER
  HILL ski area (at the top of Tenn. Pass).  However, we wonder if
  there were also ski lifts at Camp Hale itself.  There are newspaper
  references to rope tows being moved from CAMP HALE to WINTER PARK in
  1945.  Also, one historical description says "look for the ski runs
  at the upper end of the (Camp Hale) valley".

  Several of you knew about Camp Hale and its relationship to Cooper
  Hill.  However, no one shed any light on whether the "camp" itself
  had ski lifts.  Nor did a great 10th Mtn Div videotape which has
  been playing on Denver PBS stations.  The tape did show the troopers
  using the "world's longest T-bar" at Cooper, however, and that
  brought back memories as it was the first lift we ever rode.

  Speaking of memories, one of the best E-Mails we have received was
  from BOB (from So. Calif) who remembers going camping and fishing
  with his Dad in the Camp Hale area as a youngster back in the 50's.
  Neat story!

  Several of you (Bob, Tom, Jim, and Eric) have mentioned your Dads in
  connection with ski and other history.  Our Dad was not an athlete
  (he bowled) and he didn't hunt or fish or hike or climb.  We did
  travel a lot, tho, and Dad SAVED EVERY MAP.  Like Father, like child
  and that's why you are reading us today!

MOUNTAIN LAIR   (Crested Butte), [planned],  Planning (circa 1989) by
  Californian and Japanese interests to build a new resort with five
  lifts, 8 miles south of Crested Butte.  [that would put it very
  close to the old ROZMAN HILL location]  It was to be a ski and golf
  retreat for the wealthy.  No recent news.  

ROZMAN HILL   (Gunnison), [closed],  Located 21 miles north of
  Gunnison and just past the Cement Creek (PIONEER) turnoff.  Operated
  from 1949 to the mid fifties.  It essentially replaced the earlier
  PIONEER ski area which operated from 1939 to 1951.  The Western
  State College (Gunnison) ski team trained on the hill and the ski
  jump.  Misspelled "Roman" on the 1964 Gousha hiway map.  Not readily
  visible on a recent (Fall 92) visit.

    Vertical drop:  1000 ft     Top:          Base:  8700  (est.)
    Lifts:  3 rope tows         (ski jump)

SAN ISABEL   (Florence), [closed 1984],  Located 20 miles south of
  Florence on Hiways 67 and 96 and then 2 miles south on Hiway 165,
  north of Lake San Isabel.  Operated from about 1966 to 1984.
  Usually called SKI SAN ISABEL.  Used to be easily visible but more
  and more it looks like a cow pasture.

    Vertical drop:  250 ft      Top: 9000     Base:  8750
    Lifts:  1 pony lift, 2 rope tows

SUGARITE   (Raton Pass), [obscure],  Appears on the 1986 to 1991 State
  of Colorado maps as if it was a Colorado ski area.  Actually it is
  located in New Mexico, 12 miles northeast of the town of Raton
  (Could it be over the Colorado border?).  Is sometimes called RATON
  BASIN (1976 Colorado map) or RATON SKI BASIN, and is sometimes
  misspelled "Sugerite".  The 1971 Ski Area Guide shows RATON SKI
  BASIN on both the Colorado and New Mexico lists!  

    Vertical drop:  228 ft      Top:          Base:  8,000
    Lifts:  1 poma

2.  WHO REMEMBERS THESE LOST COLORADO SKI AREAS?

       Crawford
       Fawn Valley
       Imogene Pass
       Quandary Lodge
       Snodgrass Mountain

       (as we scrape the bottom of the barrel)

    And the list goes on and on and on ....  (maybe not!)

3.  LOST COLORADO SKI AREA FOLLOW - UP

 a. GENEVA BASIN - Chester, from Gunsmoke (AKA Chester Bullock from
    Prescott - rhymes with "biscuit" -, AZ), says that when he gets
    his business administration degree, he will return to Colorado,
    put some investors together, buy Geneva, and reopen it.  Aw right!

 b. BERTHOUD PASS -  We mentioned that, in April, a Mr. Pearsall
    applied to the USFS for an operating permit and made an offer to
    the creditors for the lift equipment.  John says the area will
    never be viable unless it joins up with Winter Park.  We posed the
    question what is the terrain like between Berthoud and Parsenn
    Bowl.  Several of you wrote to comment (we thank you), and agreed
    that the terrain was not suitable and was avalanche prone.

 c. TWO MORE? - DOUG, from Boulder, submits two more lost Colorado ski
    areas for your and our consideration.

    1)  "West side of Hoosier Pass where there used to be a gas
    station and many subdivided lots.  One run visible."  Not sure
    where you mean.  On the east (south) side there is a run visible
    on the north side of the town of Alma (MERCURY).  On the west
    (north) side, near the top of the pass, there are two runs visible
    (HOOSIER PASS).  There are lots just below and east of there. We
    don't remember any gas station (since 1965).  Can you be more
    specific (how many miles from the top, which side of the road?).

    2)  "Ski jump in Boulder Canyon".  This is the second time this
    one has come up.  We have no other info.  Anyone else?

 d. ST. MARY'S GLACIER - Andy posted a question about St. Mary's
    (which we missed) that Tom Moore (TCS special agent covering The
    Cheers Bar and bars in SF and Evergreen) was kind enuff to answer.
    For anyone else who is still confused, here is some more info.
    The obvious point here is that St. Mary's Glacier, the SKI AREA,
    and St. Mary's Glacier, the GLACIER, are not the same thing.  The
    (closed) ski area is on the left, about a mile short of where the
    road deadends at the lake.  Just past the ski area is the
    trailhead for the hike up to the glacier which is a popular summer
    skiing (hike-up, ski down) area.  Here is our original post for
    "lost" St. Mary's from August 92:

 ST. MARY'S GLACIER   (Idaho Springs), [closed 1986], Located 7
    miles north of I-70 on the Fall River Rd west of Idaho Springs.
    Operated on and off from the late thirties to 1986.  The current
    equipment was installed in the fifties.  Also known as SILVER LAKE
    (mid 70's), SILVER MOUNTAIN (1979/80), SKI ST. MARY'S (early
    70's), and once as SKI ST. MARY'S GLACIAL ICE (!).  This area was
    famous early on (circa 1938, 39) for an annual Fourth of July ski
    race, probably on the glacier itself, not at the current ski area
    location.  

    Vertical drop:  675 ft      Top:  10,955   Base:  10,280
    Lifts:  1 T-bar, 2 Mitey Mites

 e. INSERT SKI AREA NAME - If anyone else wants to see a repeat of a
    lost Colorado ski area that we've already covered, just ask.

4. TCS CONSIDERS BRANCHING OUT.  LEAF US EXPLAIN THE ROOTS OF THE
    PROBLEM    (Please don't bark at this sap for the puns!)

4A. THE DILEMMA

    We are running out of lost COLORADO ski areas to discuss.  We said
    there were 75 and as of this issue we will have covered 66.  By
    sneaking in the occasional "planned" or "very obscure" area (not
    counted in the 75) we can stretch for another issue or two.  Also
    we have some special issues in the works on Planned Ski Areas and
    Ski Area Name Changes.  So, "Lost Colorado" will continue for a
    bit longer.  But, what of the future?

    In the last issue we made this ANNOUNCEMENT:  "We plan to start a
    new series on the LOST SKI AREAS of '__________'.  It's the
    "blank" we want to talk about.  What area or state should we do
    next? "      Actually, at the time we wrote that, we had already
    made up our mind and had started collecting data (OK, it was New
    England).  Then we suggested having a vote to see what YOU wanted
    to see next.  The results of the vote are in Section 4D.

4B. THE FEAR

    It is with a great amount of apprehension that we consider moving
    from the safe haven of "Lost Colorado" to the unknown of "The Lost
    Ski Areas of The Jurassic Period", or whatever.  Consider this.
    We have been compiling our data on lost Colorado ski areas for
    three years.  At this point the data are all neatly typed into a
    computer file in alpha order along with several cross - sort
    lists.  So when we need to produce the entry in a TCS newsletter
    for "five more lost areas", we just copy the info -
...


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