Trio spends night on Aspen Mountain after getting their SUV stuck
November 28, 2007
ASPEN ” Aspen’s hall of shame just got bigger.
A local resident and two newcomers to Aspen, apparently on the hunt Monday for some late-night tomfoolery, found it when they drove a Nissan Pathfinder past a closed area on Aspen Mountain, only to get stuck on one of the few runs currently open on Aspen Mountain ” Pussyfoot.
The men had to spend the night in their SUV, and the Skico agreed to tow the Pathfinder back to the top of the mountain but charged the men $200 each. They also must spend a day of shoveling snow and helping out on Ajax in order to pick up their ski passes.
“It was the unpardonable sin of messing up what little snow we have here,” said Skico spokesman Jeff Hanle.
On Tuesday morning, Skico snowcats towed the vehicle to safety, only after it ruined some large patches of snow, and the men spent the night in the vehicle on the mountain. Skico would not release the names of the men because they didn’t want to endanger them.
“I imagine the whole town might lynch them. There is not a lot of snow to be playing around with. It was a dumb move. They know it,” Hanle said.
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According to the Skico, the three men drove up Little Annie Road on the backside of Aspen Mountain and got lost on Richmond Ridge. Hanle said the men might have been partying before the mishap.
As the three got mired in confusion, they headed along Richmond Ridge and ended up at the top of Aspen Mountain. Hanle said an employee had left a gate open that was supposed to be locked at the top of Ajax.
“Once we’re open, the front side of Ajax is closed,” said Hanle. “I’m not sure what the ordinance is, but it is verboten.”
No matter, the three continued down the mountain on Summer Road until they got stuck in some “soft snow that we were really trying to preserve,” said Hanle.
“As you can imagine, no one is too happy with them at this point,” he continued. “The groomers found them and said, ‘Hunker down, you have to wait until patrol gets here in the morning.'”
Hanle said the Skico is satisfied with the punishment the three men got.
“We think what we came up with was sufficient,” said Hanle, when asked if law enforcement would get involved. “It’s a significant discount on what anyone else would have charged to get them out. And we hope it will send a message to everyone else: Stay off the mountain with your cars.”
Joel Stonington’s e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.