Tuesday, July 16, 2019
Sun Valley Pond Skim Antics Pave Way for More Season Ending Fun
Seems like someone took a wrong turn from Wall Street. Indeed, where else but Sun Valley do ties become costumes?
Monday, April 8, 2019


It was skim or swim as a couple hundred adults and children turned out to test their pond skimming skills during the annual Cold Bowl Pond Skim at Sun Valley Resort this past week.

The pond skim, which serves as an annual spring bath for locals who have been tucked away in skiwear all winter, was held under bluebird day conditions with nary a cloud in sight.

Still, the pond that ski patrollers had built just outside Dollar Mountain Lodge was cold enough to freeze the gizzards on the human turkey who sliced through its clear waters.

The kick for this guy was trying to kick his skis off after he skimmed out of the pond and onto his rump.

Beavis and Butthead crashed. So did a pint-sized Captain America. And there were plenty of skiers who had to slosh along the walk of shame from 10 yards outside the shoreline.

Those who splashed the crowd got extra points.

Ski patrollers Thornton McNeil, Dominick Conti and Nicole Jorgenson--outfitted in waders, along with their red-cross jackets—leapt in at the drop of a skier to fish out kids the size of large tunas.

One forward-thinking youngster came equipped with his own pool noodle, which came in handy when he crashed.

Glug, glug.

 “They’re anxious and nervous and excited to go,” said Christina Kropp, a veteran guest services worker accustomed to keeping peace in the line at top. “Of course, the trick is to get in a tuck and go as fast as possible.”

The task at hand was to skim nearly 90 feet across a 20-foot-wide pond three foot deep.

But, while those who succeeded rated cheers, those who crashed got even more. And, in some perverse reverse way, a crash spelt success because Payette River Company was promising a free whitewater raft trip for the best crash.

“Get a little wet now to get a lot wetter this summer,” touted Pond Skim Emcee Sean Glaccum.

Guest Services gals--Nancy Peinecke, Robin Fox and Beth Willis—were there to cheer on the participants and offer blankets to those who crashed.

Given the reward dangling in the air, parents and grandparents cheered on their young progenies’ lack of success.

“That was fabulous,” Hurley Hamilton told her 15-year-old granddaughter Tayah Hamilton after Tayah crashed and sank midway through her skim.

Tayah’s strategy going into her run?


This pond skimmer flew above the snow at pond’s end to add a dramatic finale.

Halfway through the good-natured competition, the pond sprang a leak, the water quickly rushing to who knows where. Another leak like this earlier in the Pond Skim’s history put an end to it that year. But this time the patrol was prepared. Patrollers and their spouses quickly jumped on the leak and hauled in a giant hose that sent gushing water back into the pond.

Glaccum kept assuring the crowd that Sun Valley General Manager Tim Silva, who founded Sun Valley’s Pond Skim 10 years ago, would take his annual run any moment.

But, alas, Silva was sitting this one out due to a little repair work that would enable him to be back on skis next season.

“He’ll be back—and faster—next year,” noted his wife Leslie Silva.


The pond skim was among a handful of antics designed to celebrate the end of the ski season. Sun Valley has 14 more days of carving turns.

And the resort will toast the season with its annual Baldy Bash at the bottom of Warm Springs from 2 to 6 p.m. Saturday, April 13.

Andy Frasco and Casey Kristofferson will provide live music and there will be plenty of food and drink specials. The more costumes there are the merrier it will be.

The Lower River Run chairlift closed at the end of the day on Sunday but will reopen Saturday through Sunday, April 12 through 14. You’ll have to catch your ride on Warm Springs’ Challenger Lift today through Thursday, April 11, and from Monday through Sunday, April 15 through 21.


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