As one of the United States of America’s largest ski areas, Squaw Valley Ski Resort, situated in Olympic Valley, California, hosted Winter Olympics 1960. Squaw Valley boasts 30 chairlifts that allow skiers to enjoy 3,600 snow-covered acres. Among its claims to fame, Squaw Valley is America’s only ski resort with a funitel. After removing skis or snowboards, 20 to 30 people are treated to breathtaking vistas as they are transported cable car style to higher altitude slopes. Many ski enthusiasts prefer funitel usage as opposed to gondola transport because of their capacity to function effectively during high wind speed conditions. Squaw Valley experiences an average of 40 feet of snow per year.
High Camp provides a venue for visitors including non-skiers to enjoy this beautiful resort’s pools, roller skating area and disk golf as well as shopping and fine dining. Under the watch care of CEO Andrew Wirth, summer happenings include beer and wine events, yoga instruction and concerts by world-renowned musicians, not to mention annual festivals.
1961 heralded the opening of Alpine Meadows Ski Resort, an ideal venue for skiers of all skill levels. From a 3 chairlift availability, Alpine Meadows has grown to now offer 13 lifts spanning its 2,400 acres of snow. In partnership with Disable Sports USA, Alpine Meadows endeavors to provide the ultimate in snow skiing and snowboarding activities for DSUSA’s mentally and physically challenged members of all ages. Alpine Meadows was the brainchild of John Riley and Peter Klaussen.
Originally, the primary goal of Alpine Meadows was to cater to non-profit organizations rather than for-profit business ventures sought by Squaw Valley Ski Resort.
In an effort to improve skiing in the Lake Tahoe area, Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadows operations merged under the umbrella of Squaw Valley Ski Holdings,LLC. According to Powder Magazine news articles, plans are in the works to construct a gondola that would link the ski trails and amenities of both of these outstanding resorts together.
The gondola will begin at the bottom of Squaw Valley and span a ridge in order to connect with Alpine Meadows. One bone of contention for many people is that gondola construction will impact national forest land. Aside from the amount of time and expense that is involved in completing paperwork for approval, there are environmental groups waiting in the wings whose ultimate goal is to preserve a dwindling amount of open land in California.