“I knew after the first hour of living in Leadville that Dutch Henry Hill needed a lift. North-facing slopes at 10,000 feet with snowmaking and grooming through CMC right next door: I mean, this place is special and deserves more use.”- Ben Cairns, President of Cloud City Mountain Sports, Vice President and Campus Dean for Colorado Mountain College’s (CMC) Leadville and Salida campuses, and coach for the Lake County High School Alpine Ski Team.
For years, Dutch Henry Hill has been the signature snow tubing and sledding spot for the citizens of Leadville, Colorado. But after a “coed dual-panel slalom race between Lake County High School and Summit High School” on the hill in February, momentum has shifted towards making it a local ski hill as well. According to the Leadville Herald, an anonymous donor has pitched in $30,000 in order to get the slope a rope tow. When installed, the slope will feature a run for racers, along with a trail for beginners. The hill sits just below the Colorado Mountain College-Leadville and features two runs: the hill for snow tubing, and the steeper slope that used to be home to a ski area.
The rope tow, distributed by TowPro out of New Hampshire, is planned to be purchased next spring and built-in time for the following winter. In order to get the rope tow installed, the county, Cloud City Mountain Sports, and Colorado Mountain College will have to work on developing a plan to install the lift. The plan is to install the lift near the former location of the hills lift, which will require some tree clearing. When installed, it will become a cheap and local option for the people of Leadville.