Skiing in Colorado: Past, Present, and Future

Skiing began as a method of transportation that dates all the way back to 2500 BC, and has evolved significantly as a recreational sport. What started as a necessity for miners in Colorado became one of the state’s most popular sports due to the heavy snowfalls and towering mountain peaks.

Colorado Skiing in the Past 

In the late 1800’s, the gold rush had taken over America. Although the biggest hits were in California, many chose to go to Colorado instead as there was bound to be a profit underneath the mountains. However, the miners were not aware just how harsh the weather conditions were, and had trouble navigating through the snow with their horses and wagons. Luckily, with the mixture of ideas from both the immigrants and the Scandinavian miners, skis were crafted to allow easier transportation. This became something much greater than just digging for gold, as the skis were used to go anywhere, even just to town for supplies or visiting other people. This method of transportation became popularized by none other than the mailmen, as they began to work at night due to the snow being easier to ski over. Despite this, the mailmen still undoubtedly had to pull off various stunts to get to their destination, and eventually others started to look at skiing as a form of entertainment. 

Colorado Skiing in the Present 

In the 1940’s, skiing was popular enough to become a form of military combat. The Mountain Division provided training against harsh weather conditions on the mountain, including training on skis, to prepare the military. This was successful training, as this division actually climbed 1500 foot cliffs to attack a key German defense. Once these troops arrived home, they brought their new found love of mountain sports with them and the popularity of skiing boomed once more. The veterans began to open new ski resorts for the public to engage with. Colorado gained it’s prime skiing destination in the 1970’s. Skiing technology is still being improved today, as it is currently an amazing boost for Colorado’s economy. In fact, cold mountain sports in general play a huge role in the Colorado resident’s lifestyle. Many people live for this excitement and adventure that, for some, is right in their back yard.  

Colorado Skiing in the Future 

As general technology is rapidly changing and improving, this will undoubtedly be the same for skiing. Innovations are constantly being created for ski technology, and Colorado has surpassed other states by providing an awesome skiing experience that you can’t get anywhere else. Tourists from other states come to Colorado specifically to try this skiing experience, which helps the state tremendously. Whether just to visit, or to stay in Colorado and live a mountain lifestyle, people are constantly talking about skiing. As the “living off the grid” lifestyle has gotten more popular, this sort of living in the mountains provides a different off the grid experience than other places can; and, with skiing as the best form of transportation on a mountain, technologies for skiing will continue to improve for centuries coming. 

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