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October 17, 1996

Trivia #22 - Published 17 October 1996


This is part of a series on Skiing and Ski Area TRIVIA. It is posted separately from our companion series on "LOST SKI AREAS", "THE COLORADO SKIER - SKI NEWS", and "TCS LISTS". Check 'em out.



A. JEFF (MT) sent us still more Montana ski area brochures. He is getting to be a repeat offender, er, uh, repeat contributor. We really appreciate it, Jeff. Shortly before we went to press we received a large care package of trail maps from regular reader ADNY (IL/NY). Most were from the Midwest, including 15 maps from areas we didn't previously have. That's an instant 6.3% increase in our collection. Neato!

B. Your latest E-Mails contained lots of eclectic comments. A good read for us. Fun.

C. This time around we will be mentioning things from our recent vacation trips including: ski area news; the lost ski areas of Mt. Charleston, NV; a Las Vegas update; and some ski books we picked up in California.


a. Each state has a "point of highest altitude". Are any of these "highest points" sites for formal ski areas? [not true for CO (Mt Elbert), CA (Mt Whitney), or AK (Mt McKinley)]

b. At which SKI AREAS are the following ski runs?

o Model T, Continental, Rambler, Riviera, Thunderbird

o Broadway, 7th Ave, Park Ave, Fifth Ave, 42nd St

c. In the U.S. there are 4, 6, and 8 passenger gondola cars and at STRATTON (soon at VAIL) 12 excited, friendly, and hopefully well- showered skiers can ride together. Question: Where are/were there 2 and 3 passenger gondolas?

d. How were the following folks involved with skiing or the ski industry? Jim Curran, C. Minot Dole, John Jay, Fred Pabst, Count Felix Schoffgotsch

e. NOSTALGIA QUESTION - How many SKI AREAS have some kind of BIRD name in their title?

BONUS ONE: Survey - How many of you have had to be RESCUED from a skilift? (For us, once)

BONUS TWO: Survey - In your part of the country (like where you grew up) what do you call a non-alcoholic, sweet, carbonated BEVERAGE?

BONUS THREE: "What better way to spend an autumn afternoon". WHO (often) said that and WHAT were they referring to?

AUTOMOTIVE TEASER - Do you really know which company built the car you are driving? Many vehicles are built by companies other than the one whose nameplate they carry. One good example is in the news these days: The ACURA SLX is really an ISUZU TROOPER, "badged" as an Acura. The mix is often between Japanese and U.S. companies. A general rule of thumb: If it looks sporty, it is Japanese. If it is a truck (minivan, SUV) it is U.S. built. Examples in the next issue.


a. Name five or more SKI AREAS with the word "SUGAR" in their title.


GUESSES: PETER (VT), DENIS (VA), JAN-ERIK (OR), and ERIC-2 (NY) got all five U.S. areas. ERIC-1 (NYC) had to borrow one from Canada. BTW, ERIC-2 found them by searching his own (GoSKI!) website at "http://www.goski.com"

b. Where does the SKI TURN name "Stem Christie" come from?

ANSWER: Short answer - A combination of two turns, the "stem" or STEERED turn, and the "Christie" or SKIDDED turn. "Christie" is short for "Christiania", named after a town in Norway (now called Oslo) where the turn was supposedly invented.

Long answer: Stem Christie is the 3rd step in a series of turns in the old "American" system of ski teaching. The turns are:

SNOWPLOW (or "wedge", or "Vee") Continuous snowplow with turns made by transferring weight to the ski opposite the direction of turn.

STEM - Parallel traverse across the slope, then "stem" the uphill ski out to a snowplow position, transfer weight to uphill ski, snowplow turn, at completion of turn bring (new) uphill ski back to parallel.

STEM CHRISTIE - Parallel traverse, stem uphill ski, transfer weight to uphill ski, immediately move unweighted downhill ski out parallel to weighted ski and complete the turn as a skidded turn with skis parallel.

CHRISTIE - (or "parallel christie") - Parallel traverse, unweight both skis, twist ankles/knees in direction of turn, reweight and complete parallel skidded turn. [Next month - "unweighting"]

Long Answer 2 - The "Telemark" turn (used when skiing downhill on skis with cross-country bindings) was invented in Telemark, Norway. Most folks assume that the Christianiars invented the "Christiania" turn in order to beat the Telemarkers in slalom races. However, one book we read (written by a Norwegian, so possibly biased) admits that the "C" turn was first used in a race in Christiania and the users did indeed beat the "T" turners. However, the author points out that the users of the new ski turn were also from Telemark! Therefore both of the two most popular ski turns in use today were invented in Telemark. In any case they both came from Norway.

[Should we point out that only 3 Norwegian men (and no women) racers using either turn have won an Olympic alpine ski race? 8-) ]

GUESSES: Several folks knew the turn and about Christiania/Oslo.

c. WHERE are the following ski trails and WHOM were they named for? Gibson, Jill's Run, Debbie's Gold, Perry Merrill


GIBSON - MT. CRANMORE, NH, named after HARVEY GIBSON who brought Hannes Schneider from Austria to run the Mt. Cranmore ski school back in the late 30's.

JILL'S RUN - MAMMOTH MOUNTAIN, CA, named after JILL KINMONT, badly injured ski racer (subject of the book and movie "The Other Side Of The Mountain"), who now teaches school in a town near Mammoth.)

DEBBIE'S GOLD - ALPENTAL, WA, home ski area for DEBBIE ARMSTRONG who won Olympic Gold in the 1984 Giant Slalom.

PERRY MERRILL - STOWE, VT, named after the State Forester who laid out ski trails for the CCC to build at Stowe in the late 30's.

GUESSES: Several of you knew PERRY MERRILL, but not the others. JOHN (VT) knew Debbie Armstrong but guessed Sun Valley. John also pointed out that there is a "Perry Merrill Ave " trail at JAY PEAK.

d. Name 5 or more (past and present) U.S. chairlift MANUFACTURERS.

ANSWER: Borvig, CTEC, Hall, Heron, Riblet, Thiokol, YAN [Note: POMA (France) and Doppelmayr (Austria) don't count.]

GUESSES: JOHN (VT) got 5, counting "Constam", which possibly was a U.S. company. JAN-ERIK guessed six correctly and added "Bent Bros". You may recall that Bent Bros made systems with WOODEN chairs which rotted in the snow and used "cables" made of HEMP (which, of course, had to be replaced daily). :-)

e. NOSTALGIA QUESTION: There are two operational SINGLE CHAIRLIFTS in the U.S. At which SKI AREAS are they located?


GUESSES: 6 of you knew MRG, and 2 knew KRATKA. JOHN (VT) and JAN- ERIK named both. BENJIE (CA) - not only knew them both but rode both chairlifts last ski season. Cool!

BONUS ONE: Open Question - What are the most popular names for bunny slopes? ("Broadway" and "Main Street" come to mind)

ANSWER: Many readers suggested "Easy Street". Also: Sesame Street.

Note: Reader DENIS (VA) liked FANNY HILL at SNOWMASS. Be aware that Snowmass also has a bunny run named ASSAY HILL. (cute!)

BONUS TWO: (Survey/poll) You're moving and decide to foist off accumulated junk on your neighbors instead of moving it. You neatly arrange the stuff in the garage and driveway and on the lawn and place a sign out front with TWO WORDS. What are they?

ANSWER: In the East it is YARD SALE. In the West it is GARAGE SALE. Reader JMK (CT) says TAG SALE is used in CT. We heard that term used in Maine, this summer. [Others: Estate sale, rummage sale]

Why the difference between east and west? Well, in the east, a typical house has a giant front lawn, a side gravel driveway and a garage out back. In the west, a typical house has a small front lawn half occupied by a short concrete driveway leading to a garage which dominates the front of the house. So, in the east the sale items really are in the "yard", whereas in the west, the items are in the garage and in the driveway. The lawn/yard has sprinkler heads (if there is grass), or cactus, or rocks.

GUESSES: There were regional votes, folks who know both names, and some non-travelers who said: "YARD Sale, what else!" and "Easy: GARAGE Sale!"

BONUS THREE: How many "U.S. owned" TIRE COMPANIES can you name?

ANSWER: GOODYEAR is U.S. owned. They have subsidiaries called "KELLY- SPRINGFIELD" and "LEE". COOPER is also a U.S. company. Two readers mentioned "HOOSIER". They apparently make racing tires. All of the other popular tire brands are made by foreign owned companies. FIRESTONE was acquired by BRIDGESTONE in 1988. B.F. GOODRICH (now called BFGOODRICH) is a special case. Goodrich is still a U.S. company. However, in 1987 they sold off their TIRE business to an independent group which also acquired UNIROYAL. Eventually, in 1990, the Goodrich/Uniroyal tire business was picked up by Michelin.

Here is the breakdown:

GOODYEAR (U.S.): Kelly-Springfield, Lee

BRIDGESTONE (Japan): Firestone, Seiberling

SUMITOMO (Japan): Dunlop (formerly England)

YOKOHAMA (Japan): Mohawk

CONTINENTAL (Germany): General Tire, Semperit (formerly Austria)

MICHELIN (France): Goodrich, Uniroyal

PIRELLI (Italy): Armstrong

GUESSES: Just about every tire brand was guessed as a U.S. company. BILL H and JAN-ERIK came closest to observing that Goodyear is pretty much it.


a. A reminder that OUR definition of "Lost Ski Areas" has SIX categories, including NAME CHANGE. Therefore, for example, we would list "TIEHACK" as a "lost" ski area even tho the area itself still operates, under the name "BUTTERMILK". Some of you were bummed because we listed "AMERICANA SNOW KING" (WY) as a lost area. Fear not, SNOW KING is still alive and well. Admittedly this is a trivial example of a name change which we might better have ignored. Sorry.

b. CAMP HALE, CO - The average skier would probably say that the 10th MTN DIV learned to ski at COOPER HILL ski area, about 5 miles from Camp Hale. True, but we have also read about a ski slope "at the upper end of Camp Hale" and that the rope tows were moved to WINTER PARK after the war. Case solved: The interpretive signs in front of the Camp Hale valley mention that the three long streets were named A, B, and C and that at the upper (south) end of B Street lies a ski area which was called "B-SLOPE". Sure enuff, heavy lenses revealed very definite slopes. Heavy rain kept us from hiking the area.

c. TENDERFOOT HILL, CO - We had spotted the parking lot to this defunct area near Cripple Creek from the top of Pikes Peak. When we drove there the parking lot was gated and posted "no trespassing". Bummer. However, from the highway we could see two of the ski lifts still standing. Remarkable, considering the area has been closed for over 30 years. About 500 ft vertical, one T-bar, two rope tows.

d. MT. CHARLESTON, NV - Taking time out from wasting time and money on slot machines, we drove up to the mountains, wasting time and gas money on lost ski areas. There are two canyons leading up to Mt. Charleston: Lee Canyon, and Kyle Canyon. Lee Canyon contains an operational ski area called LEE CANYON. It has 3 chairlifts, 1020 ft of vertical and some nice looking runs. We stopped at a FS visitor center in Kyle Canyon and determined that the old ski area called KYLE CANYON was located at the end of Echo Rd, near the Mary Jane Falls trailhead just short of the highway end at Charleston Lodge. This is right where reader TOM (CA) said it was. Tom and the FS agent agreed that there were lift remnants. (We did not hike it)

We also asked about the alleged "gondola" on Mt. Charleston. The guide produced a scrapbook full of newspaper clippings which showed: In 1961, the "Swiss-American Cableway Co." planned to build a "gondola" up Mt Charleston to serve skiers and sightseers. The description sounded more like a tram/cable car (two 20 passenger cars) than a gondola. The cableway was never built.

e. LOST NY - New reader STEVE was curious about a lost ski area near Addison, NY in the Pinnacle State Park. Conveniently enuff, it was called "ADDISON PINNACLE". It operated about 1972 to 1979 and had 722 feet of vertical with 3 T-bars and a rope tow.

Reader CRAIG (NH) - passed on some info on "HAPPY VALLEY", operated by Alfred St College, in Alfred, NY. We only had it operating from about 1973 to 1980, but Craig remembers it from the sixties. 350 ft vertical and the lifts included a chairlift and a rope tow.

f. MONT BLEU, KS - New reader WALTER (from ?) asked about this lost area. We have it as 1967 to 1982, 230 ft vertical, and 2 T-bars, one rope tow. Another reader thought that they used to have a chairlift and sold it to an upstart Missouri area. We haven't confirmed that. Maybe that story fits with GREENWOOD (east of Wichita) which did have chairlifts.

g. Someone asked about the ski area in ALLEGANY STATE PARK near Salamanca, NY. We haven't finished our New York lost ski area research (and may never finish - the count is up to 128 lost areas, more than for Colorado) yet, but we did know that the ski area in question was called BOVA. The reader says fine, but there were actually TWO ski areas. Well, that has been on our minds ever since and we have finally found a few references (data from 1965):

BOVA - Vertical Drop: 234 ft Lifts: 3 rope tows 3 open slopes

BIG BASIN - Vert Drop: 208 ft Lifts: 1 platterpull 5 trails


a. RED LODGE, MT - If you had a trail map for RED LODGE you would notice two shaded areas marked "future expansion". The "Cole Creek" area on the right will open this season with two HS quads. Neat!

b. WINTER PARK, CO - is replacing Colorado's slowest chairlift, "Olympia" with a HS Quad. It's about time.

c. LOVELAND VALLEY, CO - After two more visits we have finally determined that the new chair is a fixed grip quad. It will replace an existing double - no new terrain.

d. VAIL - Two visits there reveal slow progress. In early Sep, they were still removing the old gondola at Lionshead. In late Sep, the gondola was gone and footers had been poured for the new lower gondola terminal. In early Oct there were pix of the new gondola towers being set into place. No way this will be done by their early NOV opening date. Fortunately there are HS quads up the same route.

The new base lodge at Golden Peak (the one with the $50,000 parking spaces in the basement) is still just structural steel. It might be open by Christmas if they work hard.

e. GEORGE GILLETT - Some of you may remember this man who once owned and ran VAIL. He lost Vail Associates when his meat packing business and TV stations went kaput. In early Sep, it was announced that he and his sons had bought MT CRANMORE and WATERVILLE VALLEY (NH), the two ski areas that Les Otten was forced to sell to complete the big merger. Then, in late Sep it was announced that Gillett had bought 3 ski areas in CA (NORTHSTAR, SIERRA-AT-TAHOE, and BEAR MTN) formerly owned by the Fibreboard Corp. Ole George doesn't give up easily.

f. KILLINGTON opened on 4 Oct. As per usual, they closed four days later. Their openings are more like "crushed ice in Central Park" publicity events than real skiing. At least they are predictable. KEYSTONE AND LOVELAND started making snow in late September. There was real snow falling at the time. However, we are just finishing a delightful two week Indian Summer season. Keystone stopped making snow to avoid wasting water and electricity. (Soon, we promise!)

g. ASPEN has announced a regular lift ticket price at $56! (How much does bowling cost?)

h. LONG RANGE EXPANSION PLANS - VAIL has received "final" permission from the Forest Service to do the CAT III expansion which includes north facing bowls out past the current back bowls. The FS chopped them back from 1000 to 850 acres and from 4 to 3 lifts. Vail is tinkled pink and plans to start work next summer and open in 1998.

TELLURIDE received permission to add several lifts and expand into/onto several new gulches and peaks, including Gold Hill and Palmyra Gulch. Plans are long-range. STEAMBOAT will also expand, with one lift and terrain coming this season.

STAGECOACH (near Steamboat, CO), which folded back in 1974, has been obtained from the creditor and will open this year as a cross-country area with snowcat tours. There are plans for adding lifts.

CATAMOUNT, a planned new area near Stagecoach, was proceeding nicely thru the permit process when the principal investor withdrew. The owners of OKEMO (VT) came to see the "area" this summer to see if they might want to invest. No word on their decision.


a. YAN-1 - Since the YAN chairlift disaster last season, all of the YAN HS Quads (or at least their grips) are being replaced. We have been trying to track all of the known YAN (HS) lifts (curiously there are none in Colorado). At DEER VALLEY, UT the "Carpenter" YAN HS Quad has been replaced by a "Garaventa CTEC" HS Quad. We can't figure out what happened at KILLINGTON. A reader reported last season that several individual chairs were removed during the inspection of their quad. But, no replaced HS Quad at KILLINGTON this season. They must have opted for the grip replacement solution.

b. YAN-2 - Now a new problem. LIFT ENGINEERING (former builder of YAN skilifts) issued a Service Bulletin requesting that all YAN chair bullwheels (on FG chairs) be rewelded in a certain spot. According to the DENVER POST, the bulletin affects 45 YAN chairs in Colorado. So far only KEYSTONE has decided to reweld bullwheels on all nine of their YAN chairs. VAIL is doing one of their three. Other ski areas are just inspecting their welds. KEYSTONE, you may remember, had a YAN bullwheel fall off its axle back in 85. Several injuries and one death. That's why they are being so prudent - and crowing about it, that is, suggesting that this procedure HAS to be done and ski areas which don't are endangering the skiing public. We will report when the first bullwheel fails (and we won't be riding them)! 8-(

c. MT BEACON, NY - Long time reader ERIC (NYC) first reported an old "tram" up Mt Beacon, and then corrected it to a "cog railway". Recently he and his Father (they are very close) climbed Mt Beacon and discovered - aha! - that it really was a funicular (inclined cable railway). It was built in 1902 by Otis Elevator and rises 1200 feet. Eric reports that most of the track is overgrown and hidden. Once again the East vs West difference in moisture and growth rates. The Manitou Incline (here) has been closed about 10 years and we guarantee you that 50 years from now it will be easily visible.

Eric and Daddy also climbed over the defunct DUTCHESS ski area which is slightly more visible due to active mountain biking. Thanks for the excellent field report, Eric, and thank your Dad for still taking you on field trips :-). What about the MT BEACON ski area? Visible?

d. LAS VEGAS MONORAIL - PC Jr and I rode the monorail between the MGM Grand and Bally's hotels. It is large and modern and slow and bumpy. It looks like the Alweg types at Disneyland. According to a reader, this particular unit was originally used at Disney World (and was built by Bombardier).

e. MT. HOOD AERIAL SKI BUS - Would you believe that 3 people actually knew about this oddity of the early 50's! LARRY (OR) has seen pictures for sale at Wy'east Day Lodge at TIMBERLINE. PAT (OR) has seen the pix and the lower terminal, now part of the Thunderbird Inn. "LCM is MDS" (no name given) actually rode the bus as a youth. 10 cents a ride for kids - many 2 mile runs in a day. {If anyone can find a decent picture for less than $10, please let us know.)

f. In the collection of trail maps from ADNY we noticed not one, not two, but actually three different quad chairlifts with just one center pole with two seats hanging out on either side. Who makes those?


a. THE SNAVELY CLAN - The puzzle was to determine our real surname by matching a mountain, street, and town in Maine. Two readers solved. We asked JAY how he did it. Easy, he said. Loaded up "DeLorme's Street Atlas USA" on his Mac, picked a likely Mtn near Bar Harbor, matched it to a street in B.H. and then matched it to a town. The whole process took 3 minutes. Aren't computers wonderful?

We offered a trail map to the winner. Both wanted really old stuff. We started skiing in 1964 and that's pretty much as old as our collection gets. Oldest for SUNDAY RIVER is 1981, Skip. For Jay we can do ALTA or SUN VALLEY around 1966. BTW, To their credit, both winners said only if we had a spare. (THX)

b. BORON - Several readers said that "Boron" is a name that SOHIO used outside of their core service area. Maybe SOHIO in OH, IL, IN, and BORON in PA, NY. Thanks.

c. SKI TRAIN - A friend in North Bend, WA mentioned a ski train thru her parent's property. We traced it to the "Milwaukee Road" RR which went thru the Snoqualmie Tunnel to the "MILWAUKEE ROAD SKI BOWL", now the HYAK ski area. As a courtesy we passed a copy of our findings to our friend. She, in turn, passed it on to her Mother. Her Mother wrote a long rambling letter discussing life in the old days, including life in the railroad town of CEDAR FALLS, which was razed after the tunnel closed. She also remembered STEAM on this electrified route. Hmmm.

Mrs. Vaughan passed our data on to a friend who is a railroad buff (William J. Walker of North Bend). He wrote a nice letter full of facts, also touching on Cedar Falls, and sent some map copies. Bill indicated that on the east bound trip up to the tunnel, steam powered helper engines were used. That might explain the steam that Mrs. Vaughan remembered. He sent a brochure for the "SNOQUALMIE VALLEY", a currently operating tourist railroad.

Bill also sent a copy of an ad for the ski train for the 1946-47 season: Left Seattle at 7:30, arrived Ski Bowl at 9:30. Lv Ski Bowl at 4:00, Ar Seattle at 6:00 (weekends) Cost: $1.77 !!!


a. ERRATA (that is, our goofs)

o The "Not Lost" ski area in NY called FROST RIDGE has a vertical drop of 140 ft, not 40 ft.

o When discussing the pic of Pres. Truman flyfishing in Idaho in a business suit, we called him "Harry S. Truman". DEBBIE (CA) says Wrong; it should be "Harry S Truman". "S" was his entire middle name. Debbie spent four years as a History major and this is all she learned! [BTW, Deb, the US Navy has just launched an Aircraft Carrier called the "Harry S. Truman" :-) ]

o The infamous YAN HS Quad which crashed at WHISTLER last season was called "Quicksilver", not Creekside. SNOW COUNTRY called it "Creekside". Perhaps that is the name of the gondola which replaced the chair.

o We mentioned the Arlberg Club at Winter Park and stated that they still had a lodge on Ski Hill Rd at Breck. Wrong. That lodge is owned by the "Schussbaumers", another old Denver ski club.

b. WRONG, FUNNY, OR ODD. Some older ski periodicals call the J-bar the "J-stick". And some call the T-bar the "He-and-She Stick" because a couple could ride together. Funny/Odd.

At the Atlanta Olympics, someone mentioned that this was the last Olympics "in this millennium". Wrong. As all you engineers must agree, the Sydney Olympics in the year 2000 will be still be in THIS millennium.

c. OLD BOOKS FROM CALIF - 3 neat books we found in used bookstores in Orange County:

"SUN VALLEY SKI GUIDE" (1948) - We have read hints that there were other ski areas at Sun Valley besides Baldy and Dollar. This guide lists them all, with stats and pix.

"CALIFORNIA WINTER SPORTS" (1958) - A complete list of CA ski areas with histories, which will keep us busy for months.

"THE STORY OF SQUAW VALLEY" - The Squaw Valley ski area opened in 1949. The SQUAW VALLEY Olympics were held in 1960. So you figure maybe this book was written in 1965 or 1970, eh? Nope, it was written in 1953! Still, it is pretty neat with pix of their single chair and the infamous "jigback tramway".

We also found a book about the 1932 Los Angeles Summer Olympics. This was the first Olympics to have an Olympic Village for athletes. Very difficult semi-instant TRIVIA QUESTION: WHERE was the Olympic Village? Answer later.

d. TCS LISTS - From time to time we publish a list of the number of ski areas each of you has skied. The idea for doing this came from JOHN WEBB (DC) way back in 1993. Curiously, John never contributed his own stats. Recently we heard again from Mr. Webb on a different subject. Still no ski area stats. Apparently he has no idea of the phenomenon he started. Or, he just has never skied. (John??)


a. Loyal reader BILL (CA) wants to know what is an "upski"? Answer: That is the generic name given (in the 30's) to "boat tows", that is, 8-10 passenger boats or sleighs pulled up the ski hill by a motor driven cable.

b. NICK (CA) related an anecdote about SNOW KING, WY. While driving there in his VW bus he stopped to sleep in Pinecrest, WY. When he awoke there were feets of new snow. The road was closed but twice he snuck past roadblocks. When he got to Jackson, there was no one there and Snow King offered free skiing. Party, party until the roads were opened. [BTW, Nick, could that have been Pinedale, WY?]

c. KARL (CA) would like a photocopy of 1980 trail maps for BERKSHIRE EAST (MA) or CANNON MTN (NH). Best we can do is 1981 and 1983, respectively. If you want them, Karl, send S-Mail address.

d. PHIL (city unknown) asked if there were any photos available for PACIFIC OCEAN PARK. We have a brochure we can photocopy and send. ??

e. SHAWN (Quebec) sent some info on two lost QUEBEC ski areas. Thanks for the info. We are slowly building a data base on Quebec.


New Hotels: MONTE CARLO - open, no gimmicks (unless you call a $6.49 all you can eat, champagne brunch a gimmick). NEW YORK, NEW YORK - Will open in December with a large metal roller coaster and replicas of Statue of Liberty, Brooklyn Bridge, Grant's Tomb, Ellis Island, et al. Got to be fun. BELLAGIO - open in 1997. PARIS - next to Bally's (Eiffel Tower replica), not started, 1998. New Hotel Wings: RIO, CIRCUS CIRCUS, LUXOR, STRATOSPHERE.

STRATOSPHERE TOWER - 1,000 feet, great views, $5.00, no wait. The roller coaster on top is being redone. It was too tame. Being speeded up from 35mph to 50 mph and will also run backward.

FREMONT STREET EXPERIENCE - Downtown on Fremont Street, the original glitter gulch. The street is now pedestrian only and is roofed over with a lattice structure covered with lights. Every hour (at night) there is an impressive sound and light show. Worth a visit.

OTHER - The LUXOR boat ride is closed for redoing - too boring. Shows 2 and 3 of the "Search For The Obelisk" trilogy are closed for redoing. We rode Show 1, the simulator, still great. The LUXOR will be connected to EXCALIBUR via a covered, moving sidewalk. An employee said that the previous monorail connection (with hanging cars) was frequently closed due to WIND. [There are only two windy periods in Las Vegas, six months from the north, and six months from the south!] MGM GRAND is redoing the OZ area (where the yellow brick road and magic show were) and outside there will be a building with COKE TOWN, SEGA LAND, All-Star Cafe, and movie theaters.

MYSTERE - If you have never seen a show by "Cirque de Soleil", you must see one. "MYSTERE" is great. Probably the best show we have seen in the last ten years. At TREASURE ISLAND, theater seating. The Cirque has opened a new show called "QUIDAM" on Santa Monica Pier - good reviews. Oh yes, the new Amusement Park on the Pier, called PACIFIC PARK, is now open, with a junior roller coaster.

THE "INCIDENT" - PC Jr and I went to the MGM Grand Hotel on the night of the Tyson fight. We left the Excalibur about the time that gangsta rapper TUPAC SHAKUR was shot. As we crossed over the Strip on the pedestrian bridge we observed that police were shutting down all traffic on the Strip. Odd. We assumed a major accident. We passed thru the Grand heading for the monorail. We stopped, however, to observe the beautiful people gathered in the casino to show off after the big fight. Two guys in red suits and hats. Our favorite was the guy in the orange suit with the white hat.

We found the monorail and rode over to Bally's. We decided to walk back along the strip, and came upon the "accident" scene. Or, as we quickly learned from passersby, the CRIME SCENE. Just like on TV: yellow tape, cop cars (lots of bicycle cops - big in Vegas). In the street was the black BMW, riddled with bullet holes, flat tires. By pausing in the Grand casino, we had missed the ambulances, crime scene photographers, chalk outlines, etc. But it was still eerie. {For those of you who never read the paper, Mr. Shakur was shot by persons unknown and later died in the hospital.}

ANSWER to SEMI-INSTANT TRIVIA QUESTION: The 1932 Olympic Village (for men only) was built about 5 miles west of Olympic Stadium (The Coliseum) in the BALDWIN HILLS. Presumably it was later torn down. The women athletes and officials stayed at The CHAPMAN PARK HOTEL, somewhere (?) on Wilshire Blvd.


a. Please provide your CITY NAME (and YOUR NAME) when FIRST writing to TCS. We hate a vacuum.

Cheers from The Colorado Skier (and our staff)

"Are there still Ten Commandants in the Metric system?"

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