The Far West Ski Association Turns 90 - 8

to the Donner Ski Ranch at the summit of Donner Pass,
makes one doubt that anyone could travel through here in
winter and not become a skier. "
South Lake Tahoe businessmen Harvey Gross
and Norm Celio fought to keep Highway 50 open
throughout the winter. Their efforts paid off and
Highway 50 became a year-round
route during the winter of 194142.
Once Highway 40 and Highway
50 were kept free of snow
year-round, ski areas and skier
numbers boomed.
Clear roads were even more
critical in Southern California.
Without snow removal, skiers
could not reach Lake Arrowhead
or Big Bear Lake.
When roads were finally
kept clear into the valley,
Big Bear Lake became a
winter sports mecca. They
hosted the California State
Ski Championships in 1933
ski tow in 1938.
and Edi Jaun built their first mechanized
Skiing had boomed during the 1930s,
prompting Los Angeles Times ski writer Ethel Van Degrift
to declare California " Ski Mad " . But, many
were new to the sport and in need of instruction.
In the early 1930s, ski technique was rudimentary
to non-existent. Ski leaders like Dr. Donald Tressider
at Yosemite, Joel Hildebrand with the Sierra
Club, Gordon Stangland and Vic West at The Nebelhorn,
to name just a few, brought European ski
Ski instructors from Europe were brought to the US and California to teach
new skiers the basics. Walter Mosauer, above, and Otto Steiner taught at Lake
Arrowhead and coached the UCLA ski team.
instructors to California to develop ski schools and
teach California's first generation of skiers. Joel Hildebrand
brought Bill and Fred Klein to Donner
Summit in 1936 and Tressider brought Jules
Fritsch, followed by Hannes Schroll, to Yosemite.
Walter Mosauer and Otto Steiner arrived in Southern
California and began teaching at Movie Slope
at Mt Baldy and Lake Arrowhead. Sepp Benedikter
left Idaho for Wrightwood and created his ski
school that introduced thousands of Southern Californians
how to ski. Prior to developing Snow
Summit, Tommi Tyndall arrived in Big Bear Lake
and formed his Mill Creek Ski School. Hans Georg
landed on the Eastern Sierra and set up his ski
school at McGee Creek and Mammoth. These Europeans,
who had learned from some of the best ski
instructors in their home countries, created some of
California's first ski schools. These experts and
others were instrumental in teaching Californians
how to navigate on skis.
With improved skill and technique came big
down-mountain ski races. The first San Antonio
(Mt. Baldy) Downhill was staged on March 16, 1935.
The first San Gorgonio Downhill, starting high on
the slopes of Southern California's tallest mountain,
was held in April 1940. The Silver Belt, held on the
slopes of Sugar Bowl, began in April 1940. And, the
Flying Skis Invitational, first held in April 1941, required
skiers to climb to the summit of 10,909 foot
Carson Peak near June Lake, then descend five miles
and 4,000 vertical feet.
Mechanical lifts were now the future of skiing.
California Ski Area - Ski Tow Founding Dates
This list includes lodges that had tows, but may not have been an actual ski area. Some areas had cleared slopes and were attracting skiers
prior to the construction of a lift, tow, or ski jump. Dates indicate when the first tows were installed/constructed. Prior to the availability of
mechanical tow, skiers would need to walk up the slopes before they could ski down them. Compiled by Ingrid P. Wicken
1934-35 Cisco*
1935
1936
1937
1937
1938
1938
1938
1938
1938
1939
1939
Badger Pass-Yosemite
Beacon Hill-Soda Springs - Donner Summit
Snow Valley - Running Springs
Cold Springs* - Tuolumne County
Lake Mary-Johnny Ellis Tow* - Donner Summit
House of Vanderford's* - Donner Summit
Signal Hill Tow-Sierra Club* - Clair Tappan Lodge
Laing's Pioneer Camp* - Highway 40/80
Rainbow Tavern* - Highway 40/80
Sugar Bowl - Norden
Mount Waterman - Angeles Crest Highway
1939-40 Wolverton Ski Bowl* - Sequoia
1939-40 Mt. Abel* - Kern County
1940
1940
1940
1940
1940
Cooks Station* - Hwy 88
Hilltop at Truckee*
Berry's Summit* - Humboldt County
Lassen Volcanic National Park*
Alder Springs* - Glenn County
1940-41 Eskimo Hill* - State Route 89/44
1940-41 Cisco-Sitzski Lodge* - Hwy 40/80
1941
1941
1941
1941-42 Phillips* - Hwy 50
1942
1941
1944
1945
1945
Calaveras Big Trees State Park* - Hwy 4
Camp Connell* - Hwy 4
Echo Chalet* - Hwy 50
Strawberry Ski Hut-The Edelweiss* - Hwy 50
Moonridge-Goldmine-Bear Mountain -
Big Bear Lake
Mt. Baldy - San Gabriel Mountains
Celio's Lake Valley Ski Ranch* - Hwy 50
Table Mountain-Ski Sunrise* - Wrightwood
1945-46 Green Valley Lake Snow Bowl* - Green Valley Lake
1945-46 Camp O'Ongo* - San Bernardino Mountains
1946
Peddler Hill* - Hwy 88
1946-47 Donner Ski Ranch - Norden
1946-47 Sierra Ski Ranch-Sierra at Tahoe - Highway 50
1946-47 Blue Ridge-Mountain High West - Wrightwood
1946-47 White Hills* - Spooner Summit, Lake Tahoe
8 FWSA 90th Anniversary Booklet / 1930 - 2020

The Far West Ski Association Turns 90

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of The Far West Ski Association Turns 90

Index
The Far West Ski Association Turns 90 - Cover1
The Far West Ski Association Turns 90 - Cover2
The Far West Ski Association Turns 90 - 1
The Far West Ski Association Turns 90 - 2
The Far West Ski Association Turns 90 - 3
The Far West Ski Association Turns 90 - Index
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