Top to Bottom in One Month
Every mountain has its secrets. The backsides and their stashes, the lonely two-seaters, the wayward tree lines and everything in between. Local pride comes in knowing where to find the good snow and how to avoid the crowds, both of which require a semi-polished understanding of all of the above.
For some, this February’s first ever Baldy Challenge, a PK’s Ski & Sports sponsored contest to ski the entire mountain, began as a test of that knowledge. I can assure you more than a few people thought, "Ski for a month and I’m entered to win my choice of K2 skis? Done. Let’s go to Averell’s or Apple’s and celebrate."
And if you’ve grew up chasing gates on Cozy and Hemingway, and optimistically dropped $25 to enter the contest, the first few days were likely straightforward. Seattle Ridge and the Bowls: check. Warm Springs: double check. But then you may have encountered those unnamed cat tracks, such as Kenny’s, and realized that the real "challenge" was shredding the hidden, the snowless and the hardly skiable on Baldy, upon which you may have begun to question your resolve. Since in reality, this competition has been more about commitment than anything else. Crustiness will beat cockiness, as it should.
No advantages have gone to the fastest skiers; everybody had before this year’s grand ol’ Leap Day to date and initial the list’s 93 boxes. No advantages have gone to the best skiers; an hour struggling down Inhibition looks the same on paper as getting to Cold Springs in five minutes. Even that local knowledge, as valuable as it is, only made the slightest difference. Need directions finding Stylehung? Call the "Baldy Challenge Hot Line" (PK’s land-line) and stay in the game. The playing field was leveled at the start, Hot Doggers!
What’s great about the Baldy Challenge is that the grand prize, to be awarded between 6-8pm at Whiskey’s on March 1st, is wide open. The participants I’ve talked to couldn’t have less in common–other than they mildly enjoy winter. And their approaches have varied, ranging from the slow and steady to two-day marathoners (because skiing all of Baldy is one day is plain ludicrous). Some have carried the checklist to the lifts. Others are making mental notes. Being that this is the competition’s maiden season, there are no proven strategies.
My hope is that the heaps of glory, the rounds of high fives and the piles of smooches (the true prizes!) go to a tortoise, one of the many who put his or her money down and yet had no pretensions of victory, because ultimately the proceeds of PK’s Baldy Challenge go to the Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation. A new pair of K2s is killer, but there’s nothing better than supporting the next generation, who are the future keepers of Baldy and this challenge.
Kenny Loggins Concert with Blue Sky Riders!
June 26th; 8pm
Sun Valley Pavilion
Tickets available for purchase at seats.sunvalley.com or call 208-622-2135
2012 San Francisco Ballet
July 8th, 7:30 pm
Sun Valley Pavilion
Tickets are on sale now for the San Francisco Ballet coming to the Sun Valley Pavilion on July 8th, 2012 in Sun Valley, ID.
San Francisco Ballet’s summer/fall tour includes this Sun Valley performance as well as dates at the Bolshoi Theater in Moscow, Sadler’s Wells Theater in London, the Hamburg State Opera House, and the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. San Francisco Ballet’s summer/fall tour includes a one-night-only performance at the spectacular Sun Valley Pavilion in Sun Valley, Idaho.
**Sun Valley Resort is the Official Lodging Sponsor of the San Francisco Ballet. For Special Saturday and Sunday night lodging rates please call 800.786.825. Mention the Ballet for the special rate.
Tickets for this amazing performance are now on sale.
Call 415.865.2000 to reserve your seats today!
Over the past 75 years, Sun Valley has played host to countless groups, companies, conferences, summits and special events throughout its storied history. It’s been the locale for family reunions for the likes of the Kennedys and the Hemingways. Allen and Company and their list of some of the world’s most powerful and influential people meet here every summer. Countless weddings, press outlets like Powder Magazine and Transworld Business, film production companies, Wounded Warriors participants, the Special Olympics, international Nordic Olympic teams, alpine ski teams from across the country, world class musicians from Itzhak Perlman to Michael Franti, comedians like Bill Cosby and speakers like the Dalai Lama, artists, crafts festivals and so many more have all enjoyed Sun Valley as playground and backdrop for meetings of the mind.
And this week another distinguished group is joining us for some turns on Baldy. As Sun Valley is pleased to once again host the National Brotherhood of Skiing (NBS) for the first time in over a decade! This biennial event, held in Sun Valley from February 25th to March 3rd, brings an estimated 1,000 members to our beloved ski town and will infuse the local economy by spending more than $500,000!
"We are excited to return to Sun Valley after 14 years. Our members have fond memories of the resort’s beautiful scenic surroundings and wide range of ski terrain. We are excited to see what Sun Valley has to offer," said Haymon Jahi, NBS President.
Now in celebrating its 39th anniversary, the National Brotherhood of Skiing is continuing its mission to: Identify, develop and support athletes of color who will WIN Olympic and international winter sports competitions representing the United States and to increase participation in winter sports. Fitting with the mission, the theme for this year’s gathering is "Dare to Dream."
There are 60 NBS clubs nationwide who represent more than 3,000 members. Support of this biennial Summit enables the NBS to fund its youth athletic programs and their goal of introducing 100,000 youth to winter sports.
As Jahi explained, "Sun Valley’s long and fabled history make it an ideal location to reflect on our past and plan for the future."
The NBS plans a non-stop schedule of events during the Summit. Beyond the skiing, riding and social events, the organization will host leadership meetings and elect national officers. Summit week’s most popular events will include:
Opening Ceremonies (Sunday, February 26 – Ketchum Town Square)
Avalanche Awareness Seminar (Tuesday, February 28 – River Run Day Lodge – hosted jointly with the U.S. Forest Service)
Picnic-On-The-Hill/ Club Races, (Wednesday, Feb. 29 – Sun Valley’s Warm Springs Parking Lot)
And numerous aprs ski gatherings (Sun Valley’s River Run Day Lodge & other venues in town).
Demo Days Done Dirt Cheap!
Pete Lane’s Mountain Sports at River Run and Warm Springs