March in Sun Valley is coming in like a lion with significant snowfall falling over the past week and more predicted through the weekend. The month will also not go out like the proverbial lamb, because the Toyota U.S. Alpine Championships, a world-class event, is coming to Baldy’s storied slopes from March 21 to 26. You won’t want to miss a minute of this celebration of amazing ski racing and mountain culture.
The action returns! Sun Valley last hosted the U.S. Alpine Championships in 2016. It was so great,...
Skiing & Riding
Much to the delight of skiers and snowboarders from across the region, Sun Valley opened up its superpipe last week.
At a whopping 593 feet-long and 22 feet-high, the superpipe—one of just a handful to open in the West this season—requires almost 50% as much snow as a regular 18 foot-high halfpipe, according the John Matteson.
John has been the mountain manager at Dollar Mountain since 2005. He said that adding elements like the superpipe in “Old Bowl” and the rest of the world-class terrain park over the last handful of years has enhanced and re-energized the experience at Dollar.
“It really lit up Dollar. It has added a lot of life and energy to the resort,” said John, who started his career in Sun Valley as a ski patrolman back in `72. “It’s really been fun and a good growth experience, especially for me since I grew up as a ski racer.”
As John pointed out, Sun Valley has long been known for producing great ski racers, but thanks to the ever-improving park and pipe scene, that’s begun to change a bit. Some of the nation’s best freestyle skiers and boarders have started to come out of Sun Valley, like Wing Tai Barrymore, Chase Josey and, of course, our beloved and most recent Olympic gold medal winner, Kaitlyn Farrington.
“We’ve really stepped it up and things just keep coming along,” John said, explaining that Sun Valley has had help creating Dollar’s park and pipes scene from some of the best in the business, like Snow Park Technologies and SE Group
It also helps that Dollar Mountain has one of the most energy-efficient snowmaking systems on the planet.
“When Mr. Holding invested in snow making it was a great thing and it’s been a blessing ever since,” John said, explaining that, “we plan for each season as if we won’t get any snow, so we’re prepared for whatever happens.”
With a guarantee of solid snow and top-notch elements of all kinds and for every age range and ability, including the perfectly carved superpipe, Dollar has become a popular place for riders from all over the region. That’s what the parking lot is usually full of license plates from not only across southern Idaho, but from our neighboring states like Utah, Oregon and Wyoming. John said that groups from other Idaho resorts like Bogus Basin and Brundage mountains regularly make trips to Dollar.
Even those of us who’d rather sit on the sun deck and watch people ride the parks and pipe than dare to do so ourselves enjoy what Dollar has to offer.
“We’re also really excited that you can see the pipe and park while you’re sitting in the restaurant. I don’t know of too many places that offer a view like that,” John said, with a big smile.
Check out the Sun Valley Terrain Parks Facebook page for more info, events and photo.
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