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Squaw Valley: new CEO...

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 

This maybe an old news to many, but apparently Nancy Cushing is no longer a CEO at Squaw and there is a new guy (formerly from Steamboat) running the ski corp, which is the first time that Squaw is not run by someone from the Cushing family.  I have not been able to gather much information about the new person, only that he promises changes at Squaw.  It would be interesting to see what changes he really makes.  He said to Unofficial Squaw that they urgently needs to upgrade the Siberia chair (which I personally don't see as being in urgent need of upgrading).  I certainly hope that he won't take Squaw in the direction of being more like Northstar, although my gut feeling is that this is where things would go. I personally don't want to see more grooming, tiered parking levels, and more patrol closures... I like Squaw as it is, all I wanted was a cheaper pass (and I got my wish); so I guess I am nervous about the changes.  


I guess the early indication would be how soon he tangles with the crew from Unofficial Squaw........

post #2 of 3

Yeah, heard about her "departure" a few months back. Word is that she is now focusing on the Village - much to the dismay of a number of the local store owners I chatted with. Apparently she is trying to run them out of business by cranking up rates and only providing short term leases so that she can bring "her own" businesses in. This is totally hearsay to take it as such. I think I would upgrade GC before Siberia


As far as Squaw goes, let me say that I truly love the mountain and spend most of my time skiing there. Having said that, it feels like it dies a little bit more each year and it really think is in desperate need of some major facility and services upgrades. The food on mountain just plain sucks (not that I personally care too much about that), High camp is to say the least sad, a number of the buildings at the base need to be bulldozed, and the "new" village is often depressingly deserted. I think a lot can be done to make the mountain more "tourist" friendly and accessible while at the same time keeping the more rad lines the way they are today. In addition, with more $$$, there will be the opportunity to open up more terrain and provide a better experience for everyone. 


Since I've already committed blasphemy in the eyes of a bunch of you, let me go ahead and provide more fodder to burn me at the stake:


I would love to see Alpine and Squaw combined. I think such a combo could give our friends up north in Whistler a run for their money. Access from Reno is super easy and not really affected too badly by storm systems. If you anchored each base with a couple of marquee hotel properties, a sweet village (a la whistler/blackcomb), plus a gondola interconnecting the two (many of you have seen the towers on the backside of KT), then the sky could be the limit. Just think of the vast terrain that would be available, the high energy the place would have, as well as the new employment opportunities that would be created.  


Ok, you can now go get the kindling for the burning

post #3 of 3
Thread Starter 

I think there were plans floating for combining Alpine and Squaw, but it went nowhere.  I also believe Apline is on National Forest land, so no hotels at the Alpine base. You could easily shuttle people, but it is not the same as Whistler Blackomb which share the same base and Alpine and Squaw more or less share the same top.   BTW, I believe that those lift towers are actually a private resort between Squaw and Alpine- White Wolf;  according the a story on the Unofficial Squaw, the developer has been trying to get that place operational for decades.  And, according to that same article, he also owns the top of KT lift and leases it to Squaw .


I dunno about the food;  I think they upgraded the GoldCoast cafeteria couple of years back (and WildflowerToo still feeds a lot of people who know ;-)  As I said, my worry is that Squaw could start compete with Northstar for the casual Tahoe visitor dollar, start grooming more terrain, and enforcing more terrain closures (to keep those casual visitors from killing themselves, getting lost, and suing Squaw as the result).   


P.S. Yes, GC lift could be updated, although it current speed keeps the slopes relatively crowd-free.  Everything is a tradeoff.

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