Are Adventure Town Locals Really Necessary?

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Is it still possible to chuck it all and become a ski bum? Or has the new resort landscape pushed the local culture out of the valleys they once called home?

Are locals even important anymore?

ski_bum

One of my favorite ski bums

Back in the Wild West days of the 80s (when I was a teenager on spring break in Sun Valley wanting so badly to own a pair of ISKI sunglasses and stretch pants) ski bums created the culture. Tourists wanted to emulate them–envying their ski-at-all-costs mentality.

Today ski towns are more chi-chi than ski. Ski areas have become ski resorts. And what has always been an expensive sport is edging out those that have somehow “made it work.”

Jeremy-Evans-Author

Jeremy Evans

While I’d argue this isn’t true everywhere, it certainly seems apparent in the more established ski towns around the West.

What’s left might be smaller ski areas with fewer employment opportunities, with places like Park City, Crested Butte and Aspen now a vacation spot for the 1% crowd.

This week on The Edge, I’m interviewing author and adventurer Jeremy Evans.

Whether exploring a ski town or a surfing village, Evans delves into the importance of the individuals that make a place home.

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Tune in this week to The Edge as I talk to Evans about ski bums that made it work and the value of living life on the edge. Have a question for Evans? Leave a comment here or call in live on Wednesday at 8am 1-888-346-9144.

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6 responses »

  1. Hi Kim,

    I am stoked you are interviewing Jeremy. As you might imagine, him and I have developed a great relationship.

    Could be a good plug for Boyne, who hasn’t sold out or veered from their core values over the decades.

    Cheers, Jamie

    • Not surprised that you and Jeremy are on the same wave length. I was going to ask him if he was familiar with MRA. Dedication to locals and a real town are top priorities for you (and Boyne as well.)

  2. Kim, I like this topic and it hits home for me as I call Park City home. You’re right about it being a vacation spot for the 1% but it has MUCH more than that. I’d argue that although Park City has changed significantly over the years, there’s a quality of life that goes beyond skiing and being a “ski bum” that so many find appealing. I’m not sure if you’ve spent time in Park City or not when making that statement but I find life here a great balance of work/play. That’s what we seek right;)?

    • Absolutely Eric. I’m glad to hear the work/play balance is available there. We need more examples of people “making it work” in ski towns. I’ve spent a bit of time in Park City–even considered moving there. Well, truth be told, my husband and I go through a “should we just move to Park City” jag about once a year. In fact, your comment will probably bring about another navel-gazing session.

      But we remain at Crystal Mountain. It’s small. It’s on public land. It will never fully sustain a town. But the terrain is amazing. The snow is abundant. And it’s definitely not full of dark, unused houses. In fact, there aren’t any houses within a 20 mile radius.

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