Snowmass history: Lift number one in Snowmass, 1966

The Aspen Historical Society
One b/w negative of the first chairlift completed at Snowmass (Fanny Hill Lift one completed in October 1965), taken in January 1966. Related images and a story ran in the Aspen Illustrated News on January 27, 1966 (page 6-7). There are not yet chairs on the lift line. Photo taken by David Hiser.
David Hiser | Courtesy photo/The Aspen Histori

According to an article in the Aspen Illustrated News published Jan. 27, 1966, “The Ultimate development of nearly 7,000 acres of slopes served by 20 lifts, both double chair and aerial tram, to serve 10 Alpine villages for the accommodation of 17,000 skiers will create the largest ski complex in the world — dwarfing even the immense resorts of the European Alps.”

Yes, the article is talking about Snowmass-at-Aspen, as it was known back then. The vision of the complex was quite close to today’s actual stats with 21 chairlifts, 3,342 acres of terrain and skier accommodations of about 9,000, though skier visits are way beyond their estimates. The article ended with, “Lift number one (shown) was completed in October, and lift number two is halfway complete. Lifts two, three and part of four are to be completed in 1966, with lift number five to be completed in 1967. Construction for the initial village will begin on the first of June, 1966.”