Here's the story of Marmot Basin, how it came to be, who was involved and what the major developments over the years have been. As you will see a lot has happened since those early days in the 1920's, however Marmot still retains that pristine uncluttered feel that makes it so special and why so many people return season after season.
Marmot Basin celebrates its 50th Anniversary:
This season marks the beginning of the 50th anniversary for Marmot Basin as well as the start of a number of notable anniversaries for the town of Jasper. The start of the 2013/14 season kicks off a year long celebration and we to invite you to join us in celebrating this most special occasion.
Other achievements for this season include:
- Completion of the 1st Long Range Plan
- Construction started on the new Maintenance Shop at mid-mountain
- Improvements to the Rental Area in the Lower Chalet have provided a bigger Reserved Rentals section and VIP area
- New partnership with Coca Cola established
The Magic Carpet:
Over the summer the Magic Carpet was relocated to create a more flexible beginner area. This has effectively created two learning areas for either skiers and snowboards or for children and adults and will help to maintain a safer environment for all - particularly at busier times of the season.
The Paradise Express:
This high speed quad chairlift began operating in the 2011-2012 season and carries a whopping 2,400 people per hour, has a vertical rise of 410 m (1,345 ft), and will carry skiers 1,450 m (1.45 km) in only 4.6 minutes.
The Schoolhouse Chairlift and Learning Area:
Installed for the 2011-2012 season, the schoolhouse triple chair replaced the old t-bar and provides easy access for beginners to the world class beginner terrain in the School House learning area.
The Marmot Town Store:
Opened in Jasper at 611 Patricia street, the new town store means more convenience and services for visitors by offering tickets, lessons and rentals reservations in one easy location.
The Canadian Rockies Express:
This high speed quad chairlift began operating in the 2009-10 season. This is the longest high speed quad chair in the Canadian Rockies at 2.3 kilometers and whisks skiers and snowboarders up 1,955 vertical feet (596m) in under 8 minutes.
New and Improved Terrain Park:
A completely new and much expanded terrain park was located on “Liftline” in the lower portion of the mountain meaning quicker laps, better safety in poor weather and more features for skiers and riders to hit.
New 2,000 square foot Kokanee Glacier Sun Deck installed at the Caribou Chalet. The view down the Athabasca Valley and deep into the heart of the Rockies was chosen “The Best New View” of 2007 by Ski Canada. A communications tower was installed providing peak to parking lot Rogers Wireless cell service throughout the mountain. The reservoir capacity at lower mountain was increased for the snowmaking system.
A new 1.8 million dollar state-of-the-art snowmaking system was installed in lower area of the mountain ensuring good snow conditions from mid November to the end of April.
The Paradise Chalet underwent interior renovations. The Marmot Basin shuttle bus service was expanded.
The Caribou Chalet interior was renovationed and included the new Caribou Bar. The Jasper Sales Centre was located in downtown Jasper for advanced lift pass sales, ski lesson and rental equipment reservations. A new winch cat was purchased for improved grooming throughout the mountain.
The Magic Carpet ski lift was installed in the learning area. A 1 million dollar complete renovation of the Guest Services area including the installation of a state-of-the-art rental shop complete with the most up to date equipment. Rental ski & snowboard equipment is kept up to date with one third of all equipment replaced annually. Two new high alpine bowls opened on Eagle East completing the 3 year Eagle Ridge Project.
The Eagle Ridge Quad Chair was installed opening up large area of terrain including lots of expert areas.
Mr. R.B. Marshall retired in May 2000. Mr. Marshall was the President of Ski Marmot Basin, Chairman of the Rocky Mountain Skiing Inc. Board and one of the original founders of Marmot Basin.
Renovations of Rental/Repair Shop were completed. Renovations of the Caribou Chalet Cafeteria and kitchen were completed. Stairs from parking lot #3 to parking lot #4 were installed. An upgraded ticket computer system was installed in the 4th parking lot.
Marmot Basin Celebrated its 35th Anniversary. Marmot Basin enters into a partnership with Canadian Pacific Hotels. The Jasper Park Lodge will manage all Food and Beverage Services at Marmot Basin.
Renovations of Lower Chalet and a 17,500 square foot new addition, named Caribou Chalet (encompassing a new dining room lounge, washrooms, ski shop, tickets, nursery, group sales, rental shop, and administration) was completed. A new computerized ticketing system was installed.
Renovation of Eagle Chalet and washrooms was completed. The all new Eagle Dining and Club Lounges with fireplace were completed. A Ticket Booth was installed at third parking lot.
The Handle Tow was installed. The access road to the Lower Chalet was paved.
Widening of the lower portion of Spillway was completed. Parks Canada upgraded the road from the 93A turn-off to the leasehold and upgrades were made to the road up to the Lower Chalet area. Extensive preparations were made for the 1995 Canada Winter Games.
General maintenance of lifts and chalets was completed. The construction of a Snowboard Park in the lower lift area was completed.
Lower chalet renovations and additional washroom facilities were completed. The Red T-Bar was renamed School House T-Bar. The Yellow Chair was renamed the Tranquilizer Chair.
The Paradise chalet was completed. Renovation of the Eagle chalet deck and the addition of a built-in barbecue area and patio seating in what used to be the snow pit area was completed. The Eagle Chalet (Old Upper Chalet) deck was connected to the Paradise Chalet patio by an overhead walkway.
The Eagle Express Quad Detachable Chair was installed. Ski runs were widened and developed. A 10,000 square food addition to Upper chalet was built. Lower Chalet renovations were completed. The Kiefer T-Bar (formally the Yellow T-Bar) was upgraded.
Marmot Basin Celebrates its 25th Anniversary.
A 2.2 million gallon sewage treatment lagoon was constructed.
The Spillway T-Bar was installed. The Little Rascals Nursery was built. A modem sewer system was installed to connect the chalets and chalet renovations were completed.
Runs were extended and developed.
The Knob Char was installed in the Upper Basin – the serviced vertical rise became 701m/2300ft.
A modem access highway to Marmot Basin was completed. The Caribou Chair was installed from the 4th parking lot.
10 sheltered runs were developed. The Lower Chalet was built. The Yellow Chair was installed. The Red T-Bar was relocated to the lower slopes.
Nancy Greene and the Canadian National Team trained at Marmot Basin due to the early November opening.
The Red T-Bar was installed.
The Upper Chalet was built. The Yellow T-Bar was installed.
Marmot Basin Ski-Lifts Ltd. was issued a 'Licence of Operation' by Parks Canada.
Toby Rayner took over the snow car concession and installed a 700m/2296ft long rope tow on Paradise, constructed from parts of an old British Army Truck.
Bill Ruddy and Tom McCready lobbied for a road to be built from the highway to Marmot Basin. Bill then ran a bombardier snow cat, transporting 15 passengers at a time to Marmot Basin.
The British army used Marmot Basin for alpine training manoeuvres requiring a crude trail for snowmobile and snow cat transportation of the troops.
The first trail was blazed from the Athabasca Valley.
Joe Weiss names Marmot Basin and acted as guide to cross-country skiers from Whistler's Creek via Caribou Ridge.