Payette River goes big near Tamarack. (Tamarack Resort/Facebook)
The winter may be over, but a solid reminder of what a good year it was in the West continues to play out in the rivers that are flowing bank-full out of the mountains this spring.
Lookout Pass powder run. (Lookout Pass/Facebook)
Who says there’s nothing free in the world? Every Saturday at Lookout Pass Ski and Recreation, dozens of youngsters will hit the slopes for instruction in skiing and snowboarding – without cost.
The future seems brighter at Tamarack, thanks to home owners (Tamarack/Facebook)
The home owners at Tamarack Resort have once again dug in their heels and assured that the troubled Idaho mountain will be open for skiing and snowboarding this season.
The Tamarack Municipal Association paid off nearly $270,000 in back taxes to the county and now has control of winter and summer operations, including six lifts, lodging, food and beverage services, and a zipline. From 2009 to 2014, the resort has been run by the homeowners association that encompasses some 400 properties around the base of the mountain, until a management firm took over last season.
The future of a number of other properties around the base area still must be determined, likely through public tax auction, but all the facilities necessary to operate the 900-acre ski and snowboard mountain are in place for this season – and possibly beyond.
“The long-term outlook is very positive, because the owners can be very proactive towards finding developers and investors to help finish our unfinished real estate projects,” GM Brad Larson told local media.
Opening date for 2016-2017 season is set for Dec. 9, and season tickets are on sale at $419 for adults until Nov. 14. In addition, the central Idaho resort has begun holding job fairs for winter employment.
Officials believe that the solidity in ownership will re-establish the Tamarack and its 2,800 feet of vertical as a destination for both regional skiers and riders from Boise, and those from Spokane, Seattle and Portland.
Tamarack was opened in 2004 as a year-round, major destination resort. But plans got waylaid in 2008, when the former owner disappeared and his banker, Credit Suisse, had to assume the assets. The bank was the sole bidder in a bankruptcy auction.
Rendering shows what new three-story lodge will look like. (Schweitzer Mountain Resort)
For the first time, skiers and snowboarders on Schweitzer Mountain will be able to unbuckle and kick back right on the mountain.
The Pacific Ocean warming phenomenon known as El Niño came roaring into the West this winter with great promise of above-average snowfall for all. For some resorts, that was true -- but not for all.
Ari Gutman, a physician from Gladwyne, Pennsylvania, has been named the Ski Ambassador of the Year for the Learn to Ski and Snowboard (Month)/Bring a Friend initiative. Dr. Gutman took his two sons, Jonathan (14) and Matthew (13) to Spring Mountain, Pennsylvania for lessons and entered the Bring a Friend Challenge.
In the final day of action at the Nature Valley U.S. Alpine Championships in front of a big crowd of ski racing fans at Sun Valley, Idaho, Mikaela Shiffrin (Eagle-Vail, CO – U.S. Ski Team) wrapped up the season with her second national title in giant slalom Sunday.
The new owners of Soldier Mountain have had a nice first year at the central Idaho day-trip mountain – and now local charities will join in the good fortune.
Sales for next year’s season passes are beginning earlier and earlier, with competition slicing prices to the bone. But one Idaho resort has decided that enough is enough.
Snow storms both big and small have been rolling into the mountains of Idaho since Thanksgiving, giving skiers and snowboarders what they want for the holidays and beyond – and erasing memories of a couple of lean years on the slopes.
On any given day at winter resorts in the West, dozens of people on skis, snowshoes or foot can be seen heading out of the base area to get in a run within resort boundaries without riding the lift.
Ski and snowboard resorts all over Idaho have lifted the ropes on the 2015-2016 season as timely snow and low temps have produced solid bases at most of the state’s 17 mountains.
Last year’s tough winter in Idaho hasn’t deterred projects at a number of resorts that aim to upgrade everything from mountain terrain to on-mountain lodges to overnight accommodations.
More than a hundred wildfires in the mountains of the moisture-starved Pacific Coast have yet to cause any damage to ski and snowboard resorts, although a small fire near Snow Summit and Bear Mountain forced temporary evacuations and closures around the Southern California slopes.
When the chairlifts no longer turn and bare ground shows up on the trails, it’s time for winter resorts to shift into summertime mode – specifically, golf.
The old adage has held true this winter,: The more things change, the more they stay the same. So it is with the snow forecasts for this week across SnoCountry, as a persistent jet stream and high pressure ridge keeps any precipitation to the far north.
Upgrades to snowmaking and grooming will be top priorities this summer at Tamarack Resort, as a new resort management firm takes over operations at the central Idaho ski and snowboard mountain.
A couple of weeks of serious storms brought 100 inches to Wolf Creek and a welcome three feet to the Tahoe area. But they are done with, and it appears that spring skiing will be the order of the day for the near future.
Many resorts along the West Coast are sweetening ticket and lodging deals to entice skiers and snowboarders into the mountains. The deals are prompted by a winter season that hasn’t come close to even delivering an average snowfall.
After all the hoopla around Christmas and New Year’s, it’s time to get down to the business of learning how to ski or snowboard.