For the week of November 18 thru November 24, 1998  

Getting Ready

Sun Valley lays down the white stuff, completes improvements

Express Staff Writer

Snowmaking has begun on Sun Valley’s Bald Mountain and many improvements are nearing completion before the resort’s Thanksgiving Day opening.

Dining, lifts, terrain and children’s instruction are undergoing improvements on Sun Valley’s Bald and neighboring Dollar mountains.

The River Run base of Baldy will soon be home to a new children’s ski-school area and will include surface, platter-type lifts covering moderate terrain, said Jack Sibbach, Sun Valley’s marketing and public relations representative.

"This facility will give parents a chance to watch their kids at lunch and over the course of a day," Sibbach said of the area’s view from River Run day lodge.

Previously, many beginning skiers were schooled on Dollar, often requiring families to separate during lessons. Parents would head off to ski the advanced slopes of Baldy while the children were on the opposite side of the valley.

Guests voiced many complaints about that setup over the years, Sibbach said.

"Basically, we’ve developed an area on the predominately intermediate and expert slopes of Baldy where beginners can comfortably learn how to ski," said Erik Vorm, ski school supervisor.

Dollar’s Elkhorn lift

The Elkhorn lift on Dollar Mountain will be operational full time again this season.

After fire damaged the lift two years ago, it was renovated and restored for the 1997-98 season. Last week, workers were out fine tuning and checking the lift for the coming winter season.

Its a tough lift to actually get open in the winter, said Sibbach.

Many of the runs it serves face south and the limited snowmaking on that side of the mountain add to the complications, he said.

It is scheduled to open when snow coverage permits.

Half-pipe on Dollar

Construction has begun on Sun Valley’s new snowboard half-pipe and should be completed for Dollar Mountain’s opening.

The half-pipe will be 350 feet long, 90 feet wide and have an average slope of 17 degrees, said Sibbach. It will be serviced by the Half Dollar lift and travel along Hidden Valley.

Sun Valley Company mountain operations personnel are currently waiting for a special half-pipe grooming attachment to arrive. The arrival of that equipment will make possible the grooming and shaping of the carved out pipe.

Also, the Sun Valley Lodge is currently undergoing renovations and extensive cleaning to its lodge dining room and Gretchen’s Restaurant.

Gretchen’s is getting a maintenance type overhaul, Sibbach said, while the dining room, located on the second floor of the lodge, is receiving a new entryway and woodwork.


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