Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadows: Tales from Two Valleys
by Eddy Ancinas
In the rugged High Sierra at the north end of Lake Tahoe, California; two adjacent valleys lie
protected by high peaks to the west and separated by a massive ridge. The story of how these two
remote valleys became two (now one) of the best-known ski areas in North America, begins with
their discoveries by two visionaries: Wayne Poulsen, a young ski competitor from Reno, who first
saw the potential in Squaw Valley while fishing there as a boy in 1931, and John Reily, a Los
Angeles businessman, who came to Squaw Valley in 1955, and looked down from the top of the KT22
ski lift into a pristine valley to the south.
How these two valleys-so close geographically yet so distant philosophically-survived
avalanches, fires, floods, lift accidents, economic ups and downs, ski trends, public opinion,
good and bad management; and how the corporatization of both sides of the mountain inevitably
joined them as one, is a story about the people who lived, worked and survived all of the above in
both valleys. Today, a new chapter unfolds as the distinct philosophies behind Squaw and Alpine unite the two
valleys under common ownership, and their future is linked by a young couple who own the ridge
that separates them.
|Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadows: Tales from Two Valleys|
Eddie Ancinas, Author
Publisher: The History Press (February 20, 2013)
About the Author:
Eddy Ancinas, descendent of a California ski and mountaineering family, first skied at Badger Pass
in Yosemite in the 1940s before following many California skiers to Sugar Bowl and on to
Squaw Valley when it opened in 1948. She was a guide for the International Olympic Committee
in Squaw Valley at the 1960 Olympics, where she met her husband, a member of the Argentine
Olympic Team. They raised their family in Alpine Meadows and currently live between the two valleys.
Eddy has published travel articles in the Los Angeles Times, San Francisco Chronicle
and Boston Globe, Nevada Magazine (best travel story award). She also writes ski
history pieces for Skiing Heritage magazine, plus an article on the 1960 Olympics
for The Atlantic.