Released in 1972, this vintage promo film depicts the first days of skiing at Snowbird Ski Resort. Known for its preponderance of blower-light powder, the original opening day had to be pushed back due to too much snow – in the form of an avalanche.
Snowbird lies 20 miles southeast from Salt Lake City in Little Cottonwood Canyon. The resort was the dream of California native, Ted Johnson, who began buying land and acquiring land-use permits from the Forest Service in the late 1960’s. While at a party in Vail, Johnson had a fortuitous meeting with Richard Bass, a Texas oilman with deep pockets and a savvy understanding of the ski industry. Bass came to visit the intended future home of Snowbird and immediately had a vision.
“I was always looking for a place – a place that combined powder snow and sunshine.”
Dick Bass, Co-Founder of Snowbird
Snowbird was officially set to open in November 1971, with a 120-passenger tram and three chairlifts. However, due to an avalanche and tram failure, the opening had to be postponed for another month. This video captures the essence of Snowbird in the early days along with the free-spirited vibe of the early 1970’s.
*opening quote also from Dick Bass