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August 15, 1995

Lists #5 - Published 15 Aug 1995

15 August 1995
Greetings from THE COLORADO SKIER

This is part of a series on Ski Area Info. It is posted separately from our companion series on "THE LOST SKI AREAS OF COLORADO (et al)", "THE COLORADO SKIER - TRIVIA", and "SKI AREA NEWS". Check 'em out.


THE COLORADO SKIERpresents
THE TCS LISTS - EDITION #5
 EDITOR'S REMARKS:      A. For those of you who missed the JUNE issue of the TCS     newsletter - not to worry, there wasn't one.  Sorry about that.      B. This edition of the TCS newsletter represents an anniversary of     sorts.  This is the first edition of our Fourth year of publishing     "The Colorado Skier" on the Internet.  The very first edition was     posted on 15 July 1992.      C. You would think that with all this experience and our     retirement that we would be picking up the pace on publication     frequency.  Not so.  The first year we published 39 editions, 2nd     year 16, and the third year, only 10.  Hmm.  The newsletters have     been getting longer, tho.  The first year it was 5 or 6 pages and     now it is more like 11 or 12.  (Hope they have been getting better     as well?)      D. Some of you were concerned or at least confused about our     signoff in the last issue:  "TCS (deceased)"   Actually it was     just an old joke.  Retired military types are referred to as:     "General (Ret) Robert E. Lee" or "Admiral Horatio Hornblower     (retired)".  We used the latter form in the previous issue and     then changed it to "deceased" to see if you were paying attention.     This idea came from the "famous" comedy team of "Lohman and    Barkely".  They were morning drive-time DJs on a chicken-rock    station (KFWB, Los Angeles) back in the late 60's, early 70's.    They had a large cast of characters including a "deceased"    Admiral; Louise, their "battery of operator"; and Farmer Maynard    who kept his chickens in a "bloodless coop".  Some day we will    find the whole list.    1A. THE GREAT "SKI AREAS I HAVE SKIED" CONTEST    We ask you to send us the total number of (lift-served) ski areas   you have skied, the number of areas with verticals over 1000 feet,   and the number of states (and provinces) skied.  The current   results (including Boris, Natasha, TCS, PC Jr, and Sissy):                               Total     Areas     States, Provinces,      Skier         State     Areas     > 1000    Countries     ________       _____     _____     ______    ___________      Joshua           NH        171!!      -         15,1,3 *     Jan-Erik         OR        87 !      84         11     Mark K           NY        73        65         17  *     Tom Moore        MA        68        55         13  *     Judith           MD        65        41         17     Jim B            MD        60        54         14     Carol B          MD        59        53         14     Al               CA        57        52         16  *     Jon Z            MA        57        47         14     Alecia P         IL        55        39         12  *     Ron P            IL        54        39         12  *     Tom Hanson       CO        54        35         11     John W           VT ?      53        42         11     Paul T           NH        53        50          9  *     Carlson          CA        49        39         11     Dan K            CA        49        46          -  *     Mike Regan       MA        48        44          8     BORIS            CO        46        44          9     John K           MN        45        32         12  *     Ted              MA        44        33          8  20     David R          NY        44        29         10  *     Karl             UT        42        26         14     Hugh             NZ        41        39         10     > TCS            CO        40        38          7     Paul M           MN        40        10 !        7  *     NATASHA          CO        39        37          9     Dave L           NY        39        34          7  *     Gregg T          NJ        39        34          -  *     Bill Hery        NJ        38        37         11     Eric             NY        38         -          9     James K          CT        42        39         11  *     Verney           TX        38        25          7     Larry            OH        38        21          8     Scott R          CO        36        35         11  *     Jeff B           LA        35        33          6  *     Keith            MA        34        26          8     Michael          UT        34         -         12     Steve K          MA        33        31          8     Chuckie B        CO        33        29          6     Nick             CA        32        28          7  *  40     Steve Hult.      CO        31        26          5     Curtis           MD        31        21         12     Dennis           CO        31        22          6     Steve ?          CA        31         -          9     Earl             CA        30        28          7     Crispin          OR        30        20         12  *     Matthew          TX        30        30          6  *     Dave N           Ont       29        22         10     Bill W           CA        28        24          4  *     George           CO        28        18          8     Kent             PA        28        16          9     Scott            MA        27        26          5     Richard          CO        27        23          5     Doug S           CA        27        22          7  *     Benjie           CA        26        25          8  *     SISSY            NH        25        22          5     Danny            PA        24        19          8     Harry            IL        24        19          8     Leo              CA        24        17          7     Marcus           Scot      24        16          7  60     Jim              FL        26        13          5  *     Ned              MD        24        19          7     Rob               ?        23        22          6     Phillip          MA        23        20          6  *     Steve Harris     MA        22        20          5     Bridget          AZ        21        19         10  *     Bill C           CA        20         -          9     Judy P           MD        20        10          6  *     Rick             CO        18        18          4     Wiley            CO        18        16          5  *     Mike S           TX        15        13          7     - PC Jr -        CO        14        13          2     Steve P          OH        13         9          5     Kevin M          CA        13        13          4  *     Chris            VA        10         8          5,0,2  *     Robert           OH         9         5          4  76      [* denotes a new or updated entry since the last post]  Note:  JAN-ERIK wondered if the "171" posted by JOSHUA was a moving target.  We think not.  Joshua has already skied at every ski area in New England and unless he gets out of his rocking chair and starts traveling, his "bagging" career is over.  Meanwhile Jan-Erik is going to mount a serious attack.  It will include a trip to New Zealand this summer and then some "standards lowering" trips to the itty bitty areas of the Northwest including Warner Canyon and Loup Loup.  JUDITH is taking a different approach.  She is reviewing her list to see if she can "add" a few more areas.   (No, Judith, MARY JANE is NOT a separate area.)   [Watch out for TOM.  He just keeps on skiing.]    1B.                  MY FIRST SKI AREA   STATE  SKI AREA            SKIER        YEAR     COMMENTS    CA    Heavenly Valley     Jan-Erik     1984   CA    Lassen              Earl          -       area closed   CA    Mammoth Mtn         Nick P       1966     age 11 - no clue   CA    Mountain High       Dave          -   CA    Papoose             Bill W       1963     merged > Squaw    CO    A-Basin             Rick         1966   CO    A-Basin             Ned          1972   CO    Berthoud            Jack N       1945     new oldie   CO    Ski Broadmoor       PC Jr        1975     area closed   CO    Cooper Hill         > TCS        1964     age 8?   CO    Geneva Basin        Chester      1982   CO    Loveland            Jeff B       1977   CO    Silver Hills        John N       70's     area closed   CO    Winter Park         Jeff         1964     2 yrs old?   CO    Winter Park         Marc         1970   CO    Winter Park         Steve K      1974    IL    Four Lakes          David G      1963   IL    Holiday Park        Ron P        1974     area closed    MI    Alpine Valley       Dennis        -   MI    Caberfae            George       1966   MI    Nub's Nob           Steve H      1971   MI    Pine Mountain       Jim          1964   MI    Porcupine Mtn       Harry        1979   MI    Sylvan's Nob        Tom Moore    1970    MN    Afton Alps          Kent         1973   MN    Buck Hill           Paul         1961     Earliest?  No!   MN    Wild Mountain       John K       1985    NC    Wolf Laurel         Amie          -    NH    Mt. Cranmore        Denis        1954     old fossil!   NH    Waterville Valley   Mike         1982  30   NM    Pajarito            Verney       66-67   NM    Sierra Blanca       Jim B        1976    NY    Altamont  ??        Ric          1946     barrel staves?   NY    Beartown            Gregg T      1961     age 7!   NY    Belleayre           Mark K       1964?   NY    Greek Peak          Phillip      1984   NY    Hunter Mountain     Bill H       1969     He feels old   NY    Maple Ski Ridge     Paul T       1963   NY    Silvermine          Eric         1956     area closed   NY    Victor Constant     Dan K        1968     (West Point)    PA    Seven Springs       Steve P      1986    UT    Snow Basin          BORIS        1968    VA    The Homestead       Beth         1960     started young?   VA    Wintergreen         Mark A        -    VT    Bolton Valley       Bill A       1977   VT    Hogback             John W       1979     area closed   VT    Killington          Judith       1964   VT    Killington          Curtis       1987   VT    Mt. Snow            Kevin M      1988   VT    Stowe               Wiley G      1955   VT    Stowe (?)           Steve H       -       (Not sure)    WI    Tyrol Basin         Carlson       -    WY    Jackson Hole        Lisa         1987   WY    Medicine Bow        Bridget      1973     (now Snowy Range)    BC    Le Jeune Lodge      Marcus       1972     area closed   ONT   Craigleith          Crispin      1967     2.5 years old   QUE   Edelweiss Valley    Leo          1974     age 10    FRA   Valmorel            Chris        1992     a newbie  58    2.  UPSIDE DOWN SKI AREAS  -  Park at the top and ski down       KIT CARSON, CA      SUNRISE, CA      ARAPAHOE EAST, CO   (closed)      HOLIDAY HILLS, CO   (closed)       SUNDOWN MTN, IA      CHESTNUT, IL      INDIANHEAD, MI      SHANTY CREEK, MI       BLUE KNOB, PA      JACK FROST, PA      HOGBACK, VT   (closed?)      KING RIDGE, NH   (closed)       SNOWSHOE, WV      WINTERGREEN, VA       LE MASSIF, PQ        ALSO-RANS  -  Park in the middle and ski down or ride up       TIMBERLINE, OR      BEAR VALLEY, CA      HAYSTACK, VT      SUGARLOAF, ME    3.  TCS TRAIL MAPS   a.  Here is the latest count from our growing (thanks to you guys)  collection:   [Note:  we count only one map per year per ski area]       TOTAL US MAPS/BROCHURES         1045      TOTAL SKI AREAS                  216      TOTAL STATES                      29       Most AREAS, by state:  CO - 36, CA - 34, VT - 19      Trail MAPS by state:  CO - 396, CA - 150, NM - 90      Maps for CLOSED areas  -  23       TOTAL CANADIAN MAPS/BROCHURES     42      TOTAL SKI AREAS                   25      TOTAL PROVINCES                    3       STATE BROCHURES                   97      REGIONAL BROCHURES                20       OLDEST BROCHURE - MT BALDY, CA - 1957       AREA WITH MOST MAPS/BROCHURES:  TAOS, NM - 29     [Note:  Counts do not include a big bunch just sent in by RON (IL)    which we are still inventorying.  Thanks Ron.]    b. NOT JUST PAPER, BUT LIVING BREATHING SKI AREAS.  We should like to  point out that we don't just log and file the brochures and maps you  send us.  We study each one very carefully.  If a map is for a "new"  area (new to us) we try to get familiar with the terrain and lifts.  If it is a new map in a series of maps we review it in concert with  the others to determine "When did they expand to South Peak", or  "When was the first quad added", etc.   One of our goals is to be able to look at any map (without labels)  and identify the ski area.  We realized how far we have to go to meet  that goal the other day when we spent several minutes trying to find  the gondola at KIRKWOOD and then finally realized that the gondola we  were thinking of is at NORTHSTAR!  Oh, well.  Practice, practice.   Another only slightly less realizable goal is to obtain a trail map  or brochure for EVERY operating area.  (We are currently at about  45%.)  Tom Moore suggests that small areas "you can see from the  parking lot" probably don't have trail maps.  That's true - but they  frequently have BROCHURES - something to spread their name, location,  phone number, etc.  For example, we have brochures for BRADFORD and  METHUEN, MA and for SKI BROADMOOR, CO, which are (were) all pretty  small areas.  BTW one BROADMOOR brochure DID have a trail map showing  its four trails.  SNEAKY TRIVIA:  Anyone know the names?    c. DATES - Surprisingly, not all brochures and trail maps are dated.  We have a penchant for dividing everything into percentages, so:  50%  of the brochures are clearly labeled as to year on the front cover.  10% have the dates on the inside above the lift ticket prices.  Another 20% require a little review.  They may have a copyright date  ("8/89"), a period of Inclusion after the airline info on the back  page ("prices good from Nov 73 to April 74"), or a period of  Exclusion for the lodging packages ("package prices not available  from 22 Dec 78 to 4 Jan 79").   The next 10% are the hardest.  We try to find a special event  ("Junior Worlds 20-28 Feb 81"), or repetitive weekend events.  With a  consistent set of paired dates, a calendar will reveal the year.  And  then there are the 10% where all of the tricks fail.  Maybe we can  identify a new lift or trail but that only works if we have maps for  adjacent years.  Sometimes we just give up and assign a range of  years.  WOLF CREEK is absolutely the worst.  They never date and  never build new lifts.   [Thanks to some of you who have included  dates on trail maps you have sent.]    d.  WHAT DO WE NEED? - We are often asked that question, but you are  apparently tired of hearing the answer "everything".  Well, we don't  have maps or brochures for any area in Rhode Island, Connecticut,  West Virginia, Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Missouri, Kansas, Ohio,  Illinois, Ontario, PEI, Newfoundland, Manitoba, or Saskatchewan.   In New England we have no maps for DARTMOUTH SKIWAY, TEMPLE MTN, or  SUICIDE SIX.  And, a big prize, to fill in a gap, would be a 1976  trail map or brochure for TAOS.    4.  TRIVIA FOLLOW-UP   a. RON SWOBODA  -  We mistakenly said that he was a DH for the Mets.  Not true.  Baseball didn't have a DH in Swoboda's era AND the NL has  never had a DH.  We misquoted BRUCE.  Shows you how much we know  about baseball!  In our entire 39 years we have seen only about 15  major and minor league baseball games compared with 200 each big time  college and pro football and basketball games.    b. STORMS?  JOHN (MA) says that (in addition to STEAMBOAT) PATS PEAK,  NH has trails named after "storms".  We checked and found:  Breeze,  Zephyr, East Wind, Whisper, and Puff!  Must be indicative of the  relative difficulty of Pats Peak vs Steamboat!  OK, to be fair, we  also found Cyclone, Tornado, Hurricane, and Twister.  Thanks, John.    c. A TALE OF TWO CITIES  -  Last time we noted with surprise that the  Canadian cities of FT. WILLIAM and PORT ARTHUR had disappeared from  maps.  SNEAKY TRIVIA:  Why?  Answer:  The two cities merged and  became THUNDER BAY, ONTARIO!   Unusual, we think.  Only MARK  (Montreal) knew that answer and he also gave us a rundown on the Lost  and Current ski areas in the vicinity.  [TCS Presents:  "The Lost  Areas of Ontario" - coming in 1997.]    d. "TWO-WAY CHAIRS"  -  BILL (CA) points out that altho the Clipper  chair at DEER VALLEY does crest a ridge and continue down the other  side, there is no provision for riding it back up - there is a  parallel, but separate, bunny chair (Homestake).    Also, while  studying trail maps we noted that one of the two "two-way chairs" at  HEAVENLY VALLEY has been converted to a triple and the little circles  indicating loading points seem to be further apart.  So maybe two  chairs (Patsy's and Waterfall) replaced one.     Two folks have  indicated that the gondola at LUTSEN, MN runs "up" both ways.  OK.  Our trail map is indeterminate.    e. OMAHA, Queen City of Eastern Nebraska  -  What is it famous for?  We'll get to that.  First tho, its contribution to ski trivia is as  the birthplace of the chairlift.  Here is the story.  SUN VALLEY, ID  was owned by the Union Pacific RR in the 30's.  An engineer for the  RR suggested an aerial ski lift after watching banana bunches being  off-loaded from a ship via hooks attached to a cable.  After  considering the effects of the hook on ski parkas, designers decided  to replace the hook with a chair.   You have probably seen the picture of a prototype chair attached to  an old car scooping up a volunteer (who eventually wore roller skates  on a board ramp to simulate a sliding skier).  In the background of  the pic you can see railroad cars.  For years we thought that was the  RR yard at Ketchum, ID but it is actually the main yard at Omaha,  which is the headquarters for Union Pacific.  They have a RR Museum  there and we have often wondered if the chairlift is mentioned.  BTW, after the lift was installed at Sun Valley it was tested with  only female "volunteers".  One of the unhappy volunteers, Gloria  Steinem's Mother, was heard to say:  "NOW is the winter of our  discontent".   (groan)   Well, the chairlift didn't make Omaha famous - what did?  The two  most obvious answers are "SAC Headquarters" and the "College World  Series".  There is also a very fine military aircraft museum in  nearby Bellevue, a good zoo, and a mediocre amusement park.  DEBBIE  (CA) mentioned the World Series and CHRIS (VA) and KEVIN (CA), knew  about SAC.  Everyone else talked about steaks, corn, and Wild  Kingdom.  (We've had some good steaks there, but no corn.)    f. THE GREAT TRIVIA DEFINITION  -  "Wonderful.  Total BS, but  wonderful."  Well, that was the response given by someone named  "Lettis" (who hasn't followed our rules about first names and home  towns).  We liked the "wonderful" but "Total BS?"  No way!  Most of  the definition was accurate.  (We may have gotten a little carried  away with the messages on the rocks :*) Many thanks to JUDITH (MD)  and JAY (NY) for defending our definition against the "Lettis"  vicious and unwarranted attack.  Here is the truth:   "Trivia" really does come from "TRI" - 3, and "VIA" - way or road.  "Trivium" means a place where three ways meet, or in general, a  crossroads.  Folks who met at the crossroads discussed small,  insignificant (trivial) things.  ["Do you think the rain will hurt  the rhubarb?  Not if it's in cans.  Well, the cans might rust, ...."]  The conversations were supposed to represent the common street talk,  i.e., trivia.  This is true.  You could look it up.  (and we did and  some of you did.)   Red herrings:  Someone said that the crossword puzzle answer for a  "Roman Road" is:  "ITER".   Actually, the OED says "VIA" is "way or  road" while "ITER" is "way or path".    To illustrate the difference:  VIA - "I went to Vail via I-70".   ITER - "I flew to DIA and took a  van to Vail".   In modern terms, one is like highway and one is like  path or route.   Someone else mentioned the division of liberal arts  called "Trivium"  (grammar, logic, and rhetoric).  That definition  actually came along in medieval times.  Hey, we were talking Roman  times.  Pay attention!    g. "LOST AMUSEMENT PARKS"  -  We asked where the third BUSCH GARDENS  amusement park was formerly located.  The answer is VAN NUYS, CA (a  Los Angeles suburb).  It started as a supplement to the monorail  brewery tour, with gardens, a boat ride, a bird show, and of course a  beer tasting pavilion.  Then they added flume rides, and eventually a  stage show.  The price went from free to $5.25.  In 1978 the rides  were closed and the facility reverted back to the garden/boat ride.  Then, in 1980, the park closed.  Today only the brewery tour remains.  Years of operation were about 1966 to 1979.  DEBBIE (CA), and DAN  (CA) knew this one.  TED (VA) said "LA".  (Louisiana?)   Continuing with this theme:  There was another "sea world" type of  attraction in Calif complete with trained dolphins and whales.  SNEAKY TRIVIA:  Where, what was it called, and WHY did it close?    h.  BIJOU  -  SNEAKY TRIVIA:  What CA ski area is located in a town  formerly called "Bijou".  Surprised that no one knew this.  The ski  area is HEAVENLY VALLEY and the town is now called South Lake Tahoe.    i.  CORRECTION:  In our last formal trivia issue, we made a slight  error with a ski trail name.  The trail name should be: "And Tyler  Too".  The question is:  Who is Tyler?  "Tippecanoe" is unrelated.    5.  BUILDER'S EMPORIUM  -  In this regular feature we discuss lifts,     groomers, skis, bindings, boots, poles, even lift tickets.      a. BENJIE (CA) asked about the strange looking "Castlerock chair"     at SUGARBUSH.  JOHN (VT) replied.  Old, very slow double chair     with overhead motor in a little building.  The towers are the old     "lattice" (erector set) type.  Wow!  Haven't seen those in years.     A-BASIN had them until KEYSTONE bought them and replaced all the     lifts.  John can still recognize a bent tower from an accident.      b. DOUG (CA) describes the MAMMOTH people mover (YAN).  Very small     subway type cars.  Powered by a big rubber band!  Actually he said     there is a vertical rubber belt which seems to power the cars by     friction.  DAN (CA) points out that there is only one car and the     system only runs from the main base to chair 2, at present.      c. GATEWAY ARCH, St. Louis - Has a unique "lift" to transport     tourists from the base to the top.  Visitors ride in a car much     like those on very large Ferris wheels.  The car hangs from a     pivot which allows it to change angles.  The car is moving     vertically at the base and horizontally at the top.  This     transportation system was built by PLANET Corporation, Lansing,     MI.  They mostly build materials handling systems (e.g.,     conveyors) for the automotive industry.  Oh, BTW, Planet was co-     founded by our very own Father.  We worked there one summer.      d. SNOWMAKING - DAVID (NY) is familiar with the quite necessary     snowmaking at ski areas in the East and wondered if areas in the     West were much into it.  The answer is yes, very much so.  It     would be easier to name the major ski areas that don't have     snowmaking than the ones that do.  Some smaller areas in Colorado,     have always depended on snow making, either for security (e.g.,     LAKE ELDORA) or to guarantee an early opening (e.g., LOVELAND).     The other areas (in CO) bit the bullet after the drought season of     1976/77 when, for example, BRECK didn't open until mid-Jan.      SUN VALLEY used to open in mid-Dec.  Now with serious snowmaking,     they open before Thanksgiving.  Some areas like MONARCH, WOLF     CREEK, and TIMBERLINE just don't need it.  KEYSTONE is generally     considered to have the most snowmaking capability in the country.      e. MORE STUPID TRIVIA  -  When we said that the Royal Gorge Tram     (CO) is flat, with a zero degree rise, we knew someone would     remind us of the Roosevelt Island Tram in NYC.  Someone did so we     watched our TV guide for the movie "Nighthawks".  In that movie, a     terrorist highjacks the tram.  In a few weeks, the movie came     along and, as we suspected, the tram cars rise from ground level     to the first tower, travel across the river to the other tower,     and drop back to ground level.  Not quite a flat ride like the     gorge (which has no towers).  However, the net elevation gain in     NYC IS zero.  (OK, a real nit, but the trivia research was fun!)    6A.  SKI AREA NEWS  -  SPRING AND SUMMER SKIING   a.  SNOWBIRD  -  For two trivial reasons (which we are too  embarrassed to reveal), we did not track SNOWBIRD this Spring.  They  were open weekends thru June and closed on 4 July.  Thx, BRUNO.   b.  MT HOOD MEADOWS  -  Also stayed open thru June, according to  Field Agent JAN-ERIK.   c.  "THE CONTEST" (or `blink if you dare')  -  It was generally  expected that the "late spring" ski areas would all close on 4 July.  However, just before the 4th, A-BASIN announced they would stay open  "until August".  The gauntlet had been dropped!  SQUAW VALLEY quickly  announced that they would stay open weekends thru July.  MAMMOTH  closed on 4 July but then realized that Squaw and "The Legend" were  still open and so Mammoth re-opened on 10 July.  The battle had been  joined.   When the battle smoke had cleared, SQUAW had been eliminated.  They  only made it thru one weekend (8, 9 July).  Apparently the problem  was lack of customers, not lack of snow as they sadly announced that  altho you could ride the tram and swim and play tennis, golfing and  mountain biking would not be available until August - due to snow.   Meanwhile, recognizing potential serious competitors, A-BASIN  announced they might stay open until Labor Day.  MAMMOTH responded by  saying that the gondola was open for mountain biking and if you paid  the fee ($20), they didn't care if you took up skis or board instead  of bike.  However, there would be no grooming or salting.  So there  we stood, with both areas actually open into August.  [Note:  A-BASIN  closed after skiing on 10 August and MAMMOTH closed on 13 August.]   In the past we have criticized KILLINGTON for their silly "spring  skiing".  One run, one trail.  Then "thin and bare spots".  Then  "some walking required".  Well, this year A-BASIN is singing that  tune.  In June - top to bottom skiing.  July - top-half skiing.  In  late July:  Carry your skis (or board) to mid mtn.  Then hike down to  the upper chair.  Ride it to the top and ski down to midway.  Cycle  the 400 ft of vertical on muddy snow.  At the end of the day, ski  down as far as you can.  Take off skis and walk down to the lower  lift and ride down.  Cost:  $20 for 4 hours.  MARK enjoyed it.   6B.  SKI AREA NEWS  -  EXPANSION PLANS   a.  PURGATORY,CO  -  DR JOHN (Fort Worth) reports that chair #3 is  being replaced by a HS Quad.  And how would he know this?  Why he was  on holiday in Colorado, of course.  [Only those of us in CO and TX  know that Texans consider Colorado a Texas State Park.  :*) ]   b. COPPER MOUNTAIN, CO  -  Replaced two double chairlifts with a quad  last season and planned to put them in Copper Bowl (new terrain) this  summer.  But then they decided to wait a year.  And then the owner  found some money and said do it this year.  But it was too late in  the building season.  OK, maybe just one chair .  Why not.  So,  unless they change their mind again, COPPER will install one double  chair serving 830 feet of vertical and 700 "new" acres.  [The area  was served by snowcat last season.]  The terrain is reached from the  top of "R" lift.   c.  SNOWMASS, CO  -  For years, this area has been planning a major  expansion onto "Burnt Mountain".  The plans include a new base with  gondola, more chairs and terrain, and lots of snowmaking.  The delay  has been in obtaining water for snowmaking.  Last Spring a settlement  was reached with all involved parties (including environmentalists)  and the expansion plans were proceeding.  We said "Stay tuned".  (Did  you stay tuned?)  Ha!  The tree huggers got the State to review the  stream flow policy and they determined that the snowmaking water  withdrawal would reduce the stream flow below that considered  necessary to support winter fish life.  Plans are now on hold.  Stay  tuned.  (Rumors are that the "tree huggers" are not the Sierra Club  variety but rather rich adjacent landowners of the NIMB variety.)   Meanwhile, it's not quite Burnt Mtn, but Snowmass did open a new "Two  Elk" base area with two quads which take skiers to the existing Elk  Camp area.  The big deal here is that the new base has parking and  it's closer to town (Aspen).   d.  CATAMOUNT, CO  -  We heard a rumor that plans for this giant ski  area near Steamboat Springs may have been canceled.  ??   e.  ADAM'S RIB, CO  -  In a golf course story we read that the Adam's  Rib golf course was under construction.  We don't think so.  This  years' controversy concerning Adam's Rib (different problem every  year) is the wetlands disturbance for the golf course.  It may never  happen.  This planned ski area may set or has set a record for  longest planning time.  It has been aplanning for over 20 years.   f. KING RIDGE, NH  -  Last issue we reported that the owners had gone  "paws up" and had turned the ski area and facilities over to the bank  lender.  The bank offered the area for sale and had one good offer  from a potential operator.  However, the bank decided to auction the  facilities piecemeal instead, thinking they might get more money.  So  the bad news is that the area is being sold off and will not operate.  The good news is that RAGGED MOUNTAIN and KING PINE each bought  triple chairlifts and will be installing them, hopefully this summer.   No word on the land sale, altho there was that condo rumor.   g.  SUGARBUSH  -  Field Agent SCOTT M (VT) visited this area (South)  recently and reported big time activity involving snowmaking.  Pipes  everywhere.  No sign of lift towers, tho.   h.  SQUAW VALLEY  -  DAN (CA) wants to know why there are lift towers  in the parking lot.  You're asking us?  We live in Colorado, how  would WE know?  :*)  Here is a plan:  After you see the towers, walk  to a nearby building (preferably the tram building which we know is  open).  Find anyone who looks like a SQUAW employee.  Ask them if the  towers are for a new lift or a replacement lift and where will it be  installed.  E-mail the info to TCS.  Then WE will tell YOU what is  going on.  Thank you.  (Boy the noive of some people!)   OH, BTW, since you asked, the KT-22 double chair is being replaced  with a quad.  Curiously, the double was purchased by a man who owns  the land between Squaw and Alpine Meadows.  Interesting!  Stay tuned.   i.  ASPEN HIGHLANDS  -  Is located on a ridge.  Not the side or sides  of the ridge, but down the spine.  The sides are too steep for  skiing.  Now, however, Highlands has announced long range plans to  develop some of the steepest lift-served terrain in the country.  They think it will be popular as patrollers have observed that some  of the out-of-bounds terrain gets "moguled up" by mid-winter (!!).   j.  KEYSTONE  -  At the gondola base, the pay parking lots are now  full of condos under construction.  Does that mean the free lots will  go to pay?  And where will the shuttle busses stop?  In a few years  an entire village will be built.  The gondola terminal will be moved  to the village side of the river and a HS Quad will be added.    7.  TID-BITS IN THE NEWS   a.  You will remember that PRINCESS DI was in VAIL during Xmas week.  She spent five days skiing, taking lessons with the Vail Ski School,  and eating out in public restaurants with very little trouble with  the "paparazzi".  This summer she was back in Colorado.  She stopped  briefly in VAIL and then moved on to Aspen where she stayed at the  home of Kurt Russell and Goldie Hawn.  She (and her two sons) were  seen river rafting and bowling (in the commoner town of El Jebel).   b.  The heavy spring snows meant big water for rafting this summer.  At this writing, 12 folks have drowned in river boating mishaps,  including 4 on commercial raft trips.  That's about how many  avalanche deaths last ski season.  One skier killed inbounds (a very  rare occurrence), a few (legally) out of bounds, some back country  skiers, and some back country hikers.  The most unusual death was of  a snowmobiler playing "highmarking" with his wife.  Each would race  up a steep snow covered slope to see who could reach the highest  point.  The husband reached the highest point.  However, he lost.   c.  Once again, J'ne Day-Lucore (Denver) won the running race up Mt.  Washington, NH.  Matt Carpenter (COS), who usually wins the men's  race, was off running a real mountain (a fourteener) that week.   d.  There was so much snow that ....  A KEYSTONE snow cat taking its  normal route under the North Peak gondola actually hit a (empty)  gondola car.  Safety systems shut the gondola down and several diners  (it was evening) and employees had to be evacuated by snowcat.    8.  POTPOURRI   a.  COLORADO'S SECRET CODE - You folks who are planning ski trips to  Colorado should know that CO has a new area code.  It is "970" and it  covers ALL of the major ski areas and their towns.  [Note:  Denver is  still 303 and COS is still 719.]  One problem is that middle "7".  Most business computers are programmed to only accept three digit  area codes with "zero" or "one" in the center position and will  reject this new format.  So be aware, and good luck.    b.  ROAD TO NOWHERE - In our travels around the country we have  observed two traffic control devices that don't work.  One is the  "cloverleaf".  It is fine for cars going straight or turning right  but requires cars turning left to cross each others path.  You won't  see any new cloverleafs being built and old ones are being  retrofitted with "flyover" lanes for left turns.   In New England they have something called a "traffic circle".  This  torture device not only requires left turning cars to cross each  others paths but requires all straight thru traffic to cross each  others paths as well as the paths of all left turners!  Total chaos!  So no one would build a new one, right?  Wrong!  The town of Vail is  building a traffic circle to replace their "four-way stop".  What a  dumb idea!  All they really needed to do was put in a traffic signal.   Vail is calling their circle a "roundabout", hoping to give it a sort  of European cachet.  Actually that is an English term and since when  do we look to England for modern traffic control ideas?  In France  the roundabout is called "Le Miserable".  In Germany it is "Der  roundenrounden traffic gerschtoppen".  In Italy it is "Thassa sama to  you, Luigi".  In Vail it will be called "DIA West".    c.  On "Mystery Science Theater 3000" there was an old (late 30's)  short subject on SKIING.  The narrator kept calling it "she-ing".  When the narrator told the audience that the correct pronunciation IS  "she-ing", one of the bots said:  "You're fulla skit".  (!!)    9.  PARTLY PERSONAL   a.  PIKES PEAK  -  We did timing for the July 4th Pikes Peak Hill  Climb again this year.  This is a vehicle race up the toll highway  running 13 miles from 9,000 to 14,000 feet.  We won't bore you with  all the details, just these three points:   1)  This is supposed to be a test of man and machine against the  mountain.  This year, the mountain won.  Two days of practice were  canceled due to snow and the actual race did not go to the summit for  the first time in 73 years.  (We worked in ski clothes.)   2)  The "Sunrayce 95" race for solar powered vehicles ran from  Indianapolis to Golden, CO (Were you involved, George?).  20 of the  cars were invited to run part way up the peak.  Here was our chance  to status the progress of this vehicle type.  3 vehicles showed up.  One finished.  One couldn't make it up the first grade and one conked  out.  Maybe it is unfair to expect developmental vehicles to climb a  mountain - however, we saw hundreds of internal combustion powered  vehicles that had no problem.   (FWIW the car which did finish  averaged 40 mph - faster than we could do in our Escort.)   3)  The most spectacular vehicle in the race was an International  truck (semi tractor) powered by a 2000 HP Cummins diesel.  Great fun!  Tim Taylor (The Tool Man) would have loved it.  More power!    b.  3.5 minutes of fame.  As you probably know, our very own MARK  writes and edits the Snowboarding FAQ.  An outfit in Japan which  teaches English via computer asked to use the FAQ in their  curriculum.  Permission was granted.    c.  MOVIE REVIEWS - We had to go see "Under Siege II" because it was  filmed in Colorado.  It really was.  Scenes in downtown Denver,  including Union Station.  The rest of the action takes place on a  train traveling along the Colorado River north of Vail.  Other scenes  are in a satellite control station in Colorado Springs (presumably in  Cheyenne Mtn, but no reference).  Still a lousy movie.   We also saw "Apollo 13".  Excellent!  Ron Howard finally gets one  right.  First good movie since "Cocoon".  We have a hard time  accepting Tom Hanks in a serious role, however.  His best work was on  "Bosom Buddies" or maybe "Joe Vs The Volcano".  ;*)    10. EPILOG       a.   Please provide your name and city name when FIRST writing to      TCS.       b.   If you would like to be ADDED to the TCS E-Mail list, notify      MARK at: mwallace@nyx.net 

c. Past TCS Newsletters are available on the WWW. The URL is:

  • http://www.nyx.net/~mwallace/TCS.html

Many thanks to CHESTER (at Copper Mtn) for setting this whole thing up. Also thanks to Art Smoot (AES Consulting, Denver) for providing server space for Chester. We suppose we should also thank MARK for working out some technical details with Chester. However, in one E-mail Mark said to Chester: "You and I can decide what works. TCS is clueless." Does that deserve a thank you?

d. Due next: "LOST.19" around 12 September.

Cheers from The Colorado Skier (Retired)

"If you're not living on the edge, you're taking up too much space." Suzy Kolber, ESPN (Extreme Games)


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