Heavenly organizes benefit for injured ski patroller | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Heavenly organizes benefit for injured ski patroller

In case you didn’t catch the name of the Heavenly ski patroller injured in the avalanche recently, it was Rich Elmquist. He suffered two broken legs and a fractured pelvis and so obviously is not out there patrolling these days.

But you can give Rich a boost by grabbing some tickets to a Heavenly benefit and raffle for him and his family March 13 at the California Main Lodge. There’ll be music, a no-host bar, prizes and a lot of fun.

Grand prize: two drawings for one season pass per winner. That’s a big- bucks prize if there ever was one!

Donations of $5 per ticket for the grand prize. And there will be lots of other prizes donated by local merchants. These items are up for winning by buying a $1 ticket at the door. It all goes to benefit Rich and his family.

If you’ve ever benefited from the work of the ski patrol – and anyone who skis or boards has – this is one benefit you can’t pass up. When Rich got caught in that snowslide he was out doing the work that makes skiing and boarding safer for all of us.

Quick recovery, Rich!


It was unbelievable power snowsporting last Sunday morning during the tailend of the storm. Early morning was windy with flying snow, but by afternoon it cleared up for one of the best days of the season. Powder or packed, it was there.

Off the top of Heavenly’s Olympic run you had your choice: head down the sort-of groomed trail or head for the trees. The groomed area was about half the width of the trail; the rest was left untouched. So you could run a trail on powder or on skier-packed.

But the trees were awesome. Point ’em downhill and let ’em run. Nice gentle turns through the trees, a few surprises now and then but nearly as good as heli-skiing.

Heavenly clearly has the best interests of all skiers in mind in that the trails are groomed for those who want the packed but leaving plenty of powder within easy reach.

Now while the powder may be skied out, there’s so much good snow it would be hard to go wrong skiing anyplace around Tahoe.


An interesting side effect of the weekend dump was the total change in business for Heavenly’s Nevada side bases. Before the construction of the new Stagecoach detachable quad, most of the traffic on the Nevada side was at the Boulder lodge, with Stagecoach largely patronized by those staying a the Ridge Resort.

But the new lift has changed all that. On Sunday, the parking lot at Boulder was not half full, while at Stagecoach guests had to park in the lower second parking lot and hoof it back to the lift. The reason is obvious: at Boulder, one has to take the old Edgewood Bowl fixed triple up to the North Bowl fixed triple. And the North Bowl lift is long and slow, making it 15-plus minutes to get to either the Olympic lift or get on the cat track over to Dipper and Comet quads.

On the new Stagecoach lift, it’s five minutes to the top, then at decent advanced skiing on the left or a quick cat track to the top of North Bowl lift and on to Comet and Dipper. Skiers and boarders caught on to this timer-saver quickly with even ski instructors at Boulder taking the shuttle bus over to Stagecoach to get in two runs in the pre-10 a.m. free skiing.

Of course, this means fewer lessons at Boulder, while at the same time there is no space for beginner and novice lessons at Stagecoach. Obviously, something will have to be done to boost Boulder.


At SUGAR BOWL Saturday and Sunday it’s hot days for boarders with a USASA snowboard event. Saturday is slopestyle in the terrain park, Sunday is slalom off the new four-seat Christmas Tree lift. It’s wide open with registration from 8 to 10 a.m. at the new main lodge special tickets office. Entry is $15. Competitor lift tickets are $10 for 6-12, $27 for 12-21, and $38 for adults. You have to be a USASA member to take part but you can join for $15 at Sugar Bowl on the days of the event.

For skiers, March 6 is the Sugar Bowl Eagle Race, an event that predates the World Cup. Fee is $10, register that morning. Then March 10-11 the Far Western Masters will come to the Bowl. Register on race days.

ALPINE MEADOWS will host a Huck-a-Thon on the quarterpipe Friday Feb. 26, with the USSA Far West championships Saturday and Sunday. On Monday, a women’s five-day clinic will begin; space still available.

Squaw Valley offers Mademoiselle Races on Saturday and Sunday; these are public fun races. The Ford Downhill series with AJ Kitt and Tommy Moe runs March 3-5. Also on March 3-5 is an advanced ski clinic, check it at (530) 581-7263.

DIAMOND PEAK offers a cross country and snowshoe full moon tour March 2 from its cross country center.

HOMEWOOD MOUNTAIN RESORT will stage a women’s Adventures in Snowboarding clinic March 6-7 and continues to offer Wild Wednesday twofers.

More full-moon stuff at Northstar-at-Tahoe on Feb. 27, then the UNR College Races Feb.28-March 1.

HEAVENLY continues with its free demos of shaped and powder skis at two demo centers, one at East Peak lodge and the other at the base of the Sky Chair. You ski 90 minutes with an instructor to help get the most out of the test skis.

At SQUAW VALLEY, remember Alberto Tomba, the magic man from Italy? He’ll be there March 6-7 in a benefit you might want to back. Two kinds of races, one pitting four-person teams and the other against Tomba’s time on a dual slalom course.

At KIRKWOOD, it’s Celebrity Winterfest ’99 next weekend, March 5-6. The fund-raiser slides off Friday at a VIP/Celebrity party at Planet Hollywood where the celebs will meet Bay Area VIPs before the competitive skiing Saturday.

On that daym 10-member teams, including one Special Olympics athlete, a celebrity, a ski instructor and seven corporate racers, will battle for awards and prizes, including a one-year lease on a 1999 Saab 9.5 car. The awards dinner will be held at Caesars Tahoe and will include a concert by Willie Nelson. Skiing great Eva Twardorkens and tae kwon do champ Airic Kim will be at the dinner.

Following the celebrity fest, Kirkwood will host a Special Olympics Winter Games with 250 athletes from Northern California, Southern Oregon and the Reno area competing. The Special Olympics will run from Monday through Thursday.

Also at Kirkwood this weekend will be an auction benefit for Discover Blind Skiing at Zak’s Bar from 10:30 to 4 p.m. And Saturday night there’s a 7 p.m. Full Moon Tour starting at the Cross Country Center. Fee is $15 with rental gear, $8 without.

And … take a breath, the weekend will also feature a Tele Fair for all levels of telemark skiing. Included will be on-snow clinics, demos, a drawing and a gift bag. Call (209) 258-7248.

Host sponsor is Remedy Corp.

SIERRA-AT-TAHOE checks in with a reminder that Glenn Plake will be on hand Saturday and Sunday with his wild tricks and dynamic skiing in his Hot Dog Tour. Intermediate skiers will be able to ski with Plake who’ll share the secrets to his Polish Donut and Worm Turn. Registration is $15 and includes a T-shirt and a goody bag. Much involved, so check with Sierra at (530) 659-7453.

CAMP RICHARDSON RESORT will hold a Snowshoe Fun Run on Sunday. Certainly the right time for such an event with all the fresh white around. Call (530) 542-6584 for details.

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