History and Activities
Below is a photo from February 1979, the "year of rain". It effectively rained every single weekend of the ski season. The Bryce Patrol has never looked more in uniform than in their matching garbage bags!
From left to right: George Elliott, Patty Elliott, Bob Mason, Lacy Williams,
Steve Lewis, Mark Prysi, John Leckie, Don Christian, Dawn Elliott
Recollections from Don Christian:
Bryce opened in 1965 when Pete Brice got some snow guns and blew a pile of snow. I remember hearing him tell of needing some more snow and getting a load of crushed ice so that he could open. I believe Dave Maxwell was on hand but that doesn't reconcile with the fact that Reb McCowen was our first patroller. I may be mixing up several tales.
During the 1974-75 winter season Bryce patrollers also pulled duty days at Massanutten as their patrol was just starting. Several patrollers would drive from Bryce to Massanutten for the day to form the core that patrol. Probably in 1976 or 7, the Bryce patrol was also asked to consider serving at a very small start-up, land sales-oriented area called Mountain Run. The area was miniscule and, if memory serves me, had a lift tower at the loading station and a lift tower at the top-period. Thankfully we did not undertake to serve that area. (John Leckie can probably fill in more details as I believe he was patrol leader at the time).
When I joined the patrol, Bryce consisted of a small building where the present-day ski school desk is located which was the ski school, the old base lodge which has hardly changed in 30 years, the Copper Kettle Restaurant-the original name was to have been Copper Still but Virginia law prohibited the use of names for restaurants/bars referring to alcohol, two chair lifts which are still in operation, one mitey-mite surface lift which was located about where the tubing run is now placed, the beginners' area in the same location as now, and three trails down from the top-Redeye, Revenuer's Run, and White Lightning. Hangover, in a slightly different configuration, existed but was seldom open. All trails were named with a moonshine theme.
More to come...
Here is a list of all current and former members of the Bryce Mountain Ski Patrol. Please contact us with any corrections/additions.
These are the lyrics to a song that Don Christian wrote in the late 1970's for a patrol banquet.
Bryce Mountain Ski Patrol is a member of the Southern Division of the National Ski Patrol System.
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