The holidays in Sun Valley are unique. From the snow-covered peaks (and ski runs!) that surround the Wood River Valley, to the old-fashioned charm of the Sun Valley Village and the decidedly European feel of the Resort, Christmas in Sun Valley is straight out of a beloved picture book. I have spent more than 30 Christmases in Sun Valley and while I certainly appreciate all that the Resort does to keep current (our amazing snowmaking and grooming, the gorgeous Lodge remodel, The Spa, and new
Skiing & Riding
Besides cuteness and hug-ability, perhaps the best traits most little kids have are that they are much tougher and more resilient than we ever give them credit for, and, much like "Bumbles" (or Abominable Snowmonsters), they bounce!
That's why the terrain parks and pipes, boxes and jumps that line Quarter Dollar like ever-changing amusement park rides are so popular. They give kids—and the occasional brave adults—the opportunity to play and push their boundaries a bit in a relatively safe environment. And in so doing, by conquering these new challenges, they create the type of self-confidence, skills and great memories that the kids will carry with them for a lifetime.
Like lots of local parents and Sun Valley fans, I've spent a heck of a lot of time on Quarter Dollar over the last few years, chasing after and occasionally helping up or tumbling over one of my two young sons. But it doesn't matter whether it's been just the three of us, or if we've spent time carving "pizza and French fries" with their little ski buddies (make that mostly "French fries" and "pizza" only when absolutely necessary), before they inevitably fall asleep on the car ride home to Hailey, their favorite thing to talk about is what happened in the parks.
"Did you see me almost crash off that last box, Dad? I barely saved it. It was epic," six-year-old Jack will ask with pride, as I ponder how he's already using words like "epic."
"Dad, did you see that time when I went off that jump? I didn't even crash," four-year Sammy will ask, as if I weren't skiing with him, or high fived him after he stuck a wobbly landing.
As fun as the smaller and easier-to-use terrain parks are, they're not just gateways to the larger parks and pipes over off the Half Dollar lift. What I didn't realize until I started spending oodles of time around them, is that these mini-parks are nothing but unabashed fun, even fun for us old knuckledraggers and two-plankers who can remember a time when you could only find jumps by poaching them off lift tower corners, cat tracks and snowmaker mounds. Kids these days get all the fun!
There are two terrain parks designed specifically for young and new skiers and snowboarders on Dollar Mountain. They both are easily accessed from the Quarter Dollar lift.
To the downhill skier or snowboarder's right on the main, Poverty Flats run you can fin the Prospector Park of the Adventure Trail. An ideal playground for the smallest shredders, you can usually find some kind of rolling, freestyle terrain, some small jumps and even some box elements during various parts of the season.
To the skier's left lies the more advanced Progression Park. Popular with skiers and riders of just about any ability, it always offers a terrific variety of boxes and jumps, ideal for school-aged kids and somewhat gutsy grown-ups.
Zac Miczulski may now be a freshman at Montana State, but he grew up on Dollar Mountain.
"Dollar and the parks over there are awesome. They're a great place to really start to push yourself and kind of figure out what you are and what you can do. I have so many great memories from that place. I still love to ski and board because of that place," Zac said, after spending an "amazing day" on Baldy with his dad and brother recently.
Whether you're a grom or a grandma, there's a lot of fun to be had in the terrain parks on Quarter Dollar.
Skiing & Riding
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