Barton clinic stays open at Kirkwood |

Barton clinic stays open at Kirkwood

Susan Wood

Thrill seekers and those slumbering at Kirkwood Mountain Resort may rest a little easier this summer knowing medical care is close at hand.

Barton Memorial Hospital has agreed to keep its clinic open on the ski resort grounds this summer, Director of Hospital Operations Kathy Cocking confirmed Tuesday.

“It’s nice for Kirkwood guests to not have to take a 45-minute drive and sit and wait in an emergency room,” Kirkwood Risk Manager Dave Paradyze said.

That is the distance from the resort to Barton Memorial Hospital in South Lake Tahoe.

Ambulance service could soon be finalized, according to Barton officials. Dr. Nita Sandu – the clinic’s medical director – has agreed to go on call.

Charge Nurse Julie Molin will staff the clinic on selected weekends and through the week leading up to the Fourth of July holiday – June 30-July 4. In addition, the clinic will be open July 21 and 22 for a wildflower weekend at Kirkwood. Come Aug. 11 and 12, the Alpine County resort is also putting on its first Kirkwood Classic Mountain Bike Race off Chair lift 2. For that weekend, Barton will put an X-ray technician on staff. The Disc-wood disc golf tournament will be Aug. 18-19.

The clinic will be open over Labor Day weekend Sept. 1-3 for the best of mountains festival. This includes the best of tour from the Banff Mountaineering Film Festival. The festival, which starts in Banff, Canada each November, showcases outdoor adventure films from all over the world.

The autumn festival caps off the summer at Kirkwood.

“Kirkwood has activities planned all summer. They picked the weekends that would bring out the most people,” Cocking said.

“We don’t see a ton of serious injuries out here in the summer. But it’s great in case we do. (It’s) better safe than sorry,” Kirkwood spokeswoman Nicole Belt said.

The day before the clinic reopens from its winter season, Kirkwood make its terrain available for mountain biking and rock climbing.

Its Sports & Adventure Center will also open in the Village Plaza. Visitors may buy or rent an assortment of outdoor gear, including kayaks, fishing tackle, mountain bikes, discs and climbing harnesses.

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