On Memorial Day, the Ski House of the Day is one that's located near one of the most unique US military training areas ever. The time was the 1940's, the trainees were the Tenth Mountain Division, and the place was called Cooper Hill, Colorado. The army built Camp Hale there to train the newly-formed ski-trooper unit for WWII combat on the snow. According to Colorado Central Magazine, Army engineers cleared the ski runs on Cooper Hill, and although they installed the region's first T-bar, the ski-troopers usually trekked up the mountain hauling their skis, plus an M-1 rifle and a 90-pound pack, on foot or on skins. As history shows, these brave skiers became some of the most decorated soldiers of WWII, and (those who survived) returned to the US to contribute greatly to the development of the American ski industry after the war.
Today, skiers can ski the same Cooper Hill slopes that those brave WWII soldiers of the Tenth Mountain Div trained on, at the now family-friendly resort, Ski Cooper (where the daily lift tickets there are still under $50!). Ski Cooper has granite monuments honoring these brave soldiers, and Ski Cooper still holds an annual reunion of the surviving ski trooper veterans, including honor ceremonies, and even a ski run (on the white skis) down the same slopes they trained on so many years ago. This makes me proud to be an American, proud to be a skier...and I will surely put Ski Cooper on my bucket list.
So, in honor of the skier-soldiers of the Tenth Mountain Division of WWII, on this Memorial Day the Ski House of the Day is on the mountainside very near those slopes that were their training-ground on Ski Cooper.
The modern ski cabin is an off-grid beauty that was built by Fiddler Creek Company whose inspiring business is described as "creative design and construction for a sustainable world". The beautifully creative timber frame cabin is situated on a 12-acre parcel at an elevation of 10,500 ft!
Inside are two bedrooms and two bathrooms (including one with a quaint claw-foot tub!), a living room with cozy wood stove, and a charming atmosphere.
The lovely, private cabin is available for rentals.
I love all the unexpected curves throughout the cabin:
Outside is access to gorgeous views, back-country skiing, and hiking -- including to some of the 10th Mountain Division huts in the surrounding mountains. Four wheel-drive is needed to access this special place.
It looks to me like the setting of this ski house is peaceful and serene...but echoes a past that demands respect and reverence - a perfect place to take a moment to remember the ski troopers of the Tenth Mountain Division...especially on this Memorial Day.