This ski season, five popular ski resorts are celebrating enormous anniversaries. Vail is one of those resorts reaching a major milestone!
In the 1960s and 1970s, skiing became wildly popular in America. As a result, 12 new resorts opened in Colorado. All were independent resorts founded by passionate skiers with huge dreams. This ski season, five of those ski resorts are celebrating major anniversaries. Copper Mountain and Telluride have both reached their 50th anniversaries, while Vail, Steamboat, and Eldora have reached their 60th anniversary.
Vail was founded by Pete Seibert, a veteran of the 10th Mountain Division ski troops who trained at Camp Hale for combat in Italy during World War II, after he returned from war. Seibert spent 18 months in hospitals, receiving treatment for combat wounds including a shattered kneecap that was supposed to be replaced with a steel implant. Seibert rejected the replacement because it would have limited his ability to ski- and skiing was his dream!
After healing, Seibert raced competitively. He qualified for the U.S. team in the 1950 world championships, worked on the ski patrol and ski school in Aspen, and then managed the managed the Loveland ski area before meeting the prospector Earl Eaton and hiking together to the summit of a mountain that would later host Vail's famous runs.
Vail opened on December 15, 1962. Since then, it has changed a lot, but it has continued to be defined by impeccable skiing and unshakeable passion for the sport.
You can learn more about the history of Vail at the Colorado Snowsports Museum!
Information on Vail's anniversary activities can be viewed here: https://www.vail.com/explore-the-resort/activities-and-events/vail-60th.aspx
What are some of your favorite memories of Vail? Share your stories in the comments!