February 2, 2013

Arctic Valley Opening

A silly microcontroversy has brewed on the local skiers' internet forum regarding the name of one of our local gems in Chugach State Park - is it Arctic Valley, Alpenglow, or Alpenglow at Arctic Valley?  Skipping the history of this place name, the current official version seems like a good compromise:  Arctic Valley Ski Area on Arctic Valley Road with the fantastic Alpenglow Lodge.  Regardless of what one calls it, this place has exceptional alpine access and it has an extraordinary orientation to catch mesmerizing alpenglow in the setting sun.  Winds often work Arctic Valley snow pack, but local powder connoisseurs know where to find the fluff there.  Opening day for the lifts was Feb. 2, and it was good to see the place running.

Yours truly didn't ride the lifts, but instead skinned up to Rendezvous Peak and back up to Mount Gordon Lyon.  Snow coverage was good in the gulleys, snow quality was OK, and the brews in the Alpenglow Lodge were sumptuous!  I truly appreciate the volunteers that keep the place going.

Though, I find the position of the ski club regarding backcountry skiers and other self-propelled folks inconsistent with the mission of the club, and I believe they may be overstepping the legal boundary of the area within Chugach State Park with their ski area signs extending north along the Rendezvous Peak Trail.  According to the Chugach State Park Access Plan draft, the ski area lease northernmost limit is an east-west line very close to the summit of Rendezvous Peak.  Maybe a Chugach State Park expert like Gopher can set the record straight.
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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

What a great Blog! Caught myself running through your entire season. On a side note the Anchorage Ski Club has special use permits in place with the Chugach State Park for the areas North, and South, of their main lease. I believe these were just renewed last year for another decade. As with all thing I'm sure there plenty of fine print buried in them! What a great season! Think Snow!