News

  • 9 Feb 2020 3:14 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    All ten club members arrived at the Crystal Inn in Murray, Utah (suburb of Salt Lake City) on Saturday afternoon, February 1st including John Neblett, Jim Mullenix, brothers Randy and Chris DeHart, Gary Farmer, Dave Conner, Pat and Ashley Ownby, and Tom and Susan DuBose,   The rental shop picked some of us up and took us to get our skis.  Pat Ownby talked our driver in to taking us to the state liquor store where there were long lines because everyone was stocking up for their Super Bowl parties.  We joined about 30 skiers from the Raleigh club and four members of the Coastal (Myrtle Beach) club who were also staying at the Crystal Inn and had booked their trips through Skigroup.net like we had.

    Sunday morning eight of our ten members who were skiing (Pat and John were on a relaxation trip) took the bus to Alta Ski Resort which is at the end of Little Cottonwood Canyon.  There was a traffic jam at the base of the canyon so the trip took an hour and a half.  Ashley, Randy and Chris had lift tickets while the other five had IKON passes.  The lift ticket holders found out that their lift tickets didn’t work for the bus or the lifts.  After a few phone calls the situation was finally resolved.  Temperatures at Alta were in the 40’s but it was extremely windy, especially at the top of the Sugarloaf and Collins lifts.  So most of us made it over to the Supreme lift were the wind wasn’t so bad.

    On Sunday night several went to the Bohemian Brewery for Czechoslovakian food and beer and to keep an eye on the Super Bowl - it started 4:30 pm local time.  Then everyone went back to their rooms and most reported watching the rest of Kansas City's victory before going to bed.

    On Monday a huge snow storm arrived in Salt Lake - we woke up to about 4 inches and it snowed in Salt Lake most of the day.  Four skiers - Chris, Randy, Gary and Tom - made their way up Big Cottonwood Canyon on another hour and a half bus ride (some had to stand the whole way - not fun!) to Brighton Ski Resort.  And even though forecasts had all four resorts getting 10 inches or more, they only got about an inch.  It was very cold - below five degrees - but not much wind.  And the sun even came out after lunch.  Gary exhibited his ski instruction abilities so now all four of us are ready to try out for the 2022 Beijing Olympics.

    Non-skiers soaked in the hot tub and went to the nearby mall for a delicious lunch at Red Rocks Brewery.

    Tuesday was another day at Alta for some skiers and included a fancy lunch at the Collins Grill (see picture below) - they even have slippers you can wear while you eat.  Other skiers went to Snowbird.


    Wednesday’s skiers went back to Alta and that evening several in the group skipped the free Crystal Inn chili cheese dogs, opting instead to take the Trax train downtown to the Red Iguana for some delicious Mexican fare. 

    Because of the snow storm that started on Wednesday night and the fact that the road going to Little Cottonwood Canyon was closed, Thursday morning the buses were running really slow.  After an unsuccessful wait of about 30 minutes Jim, Susan and Tom decided to take the day off instead of skiing.  Gary, Dave and Ashley drove over to Deer Valley where the World Cup was being held.  They toured the very swanky Stein Eriksen Lodge and came back with some great swag.  The five non-skiers went downtown to the mall and three of them went to the planetarium.  That night Susan happened to see a short video clip of John, Jim, Pat, Tom and herself on local TV waiting to board the train!

    Friday Dave and Gary headed back home by car, and the DeHarts and the DuBoses went to Brighton.  The road up Little Cottonwood Canyon was closed so everyone in Salt Lake wanted to go to Brighton and Solitude - it took the bus 2 hours to get there.  The other 4 of our group relaxed at the hotel.  Friday night the remaining eight of us enjoyed a great Italian dinner at Celeste Restaurante.


    Randy DeHart, Susan & Tom DuBose


    Chris & Randy DeHart

    By the time we left on Saturday morning the snow base depth at Alta was 128”, up from just over 100” when we arrived the week before.  Total additional snow at Alta and Snowbird while we were there was between 30-40”, almost all of which fell Wednesday night through Friday.  The road up Little Cottonwood to Alta and Snowbird remained closed from Wednesday night through Saturday morning and the people at those resorts were “interlodged” meaning that because of avalanche danger they could not leave their lodging for over 2 days!

    In summary while we were never confined to the hotel and we did experience some really good skiing, most felt they could have done without the long bus rides and the complimentary but low-quality hotel food.

  • 31 Jan 2020 9:43 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Chattanooga Cleek Team and Megan lined it up again at Appalachian Ski Mountain for the 2nd race of the season.  The team again worked its magic and held on to 4th place overall.  Individually, only Ben Cleek made it to the podium, but a sibling rivalry seems to be developing in division 2.  Team Captain Kevin Cleek, competing in unfamiliar territory in Flight 3 Saturday, found himself on his back on his first run and finished last, followed by a clean run where he finished 2nd from last.  On Sunday, he moved up to 5th in the giant slalom.  Cody Cleek, also racing above his pay grade found himself in 5th place both days.  He did place 2nd in his first run Sunday, but he too managed to leave a body-sized divot on the course on the 2nd run.  Megan Wigginton gave a stellar effort both days finishing 7th and 8th, but leaving no permanent marks in the course.  Ben Cleek took a 3rd Saturday and a 6th Sunday.  He is presently leading the field in "Most Improved Racer" points, and hopefully nets himself a prize at the end of the season.  But the real story is Beverly Cleek who found her idiot husband had inadvertently entered her to race, so she did, and qualified for the first time ever.  Welcome to the team, Bev.

  • 22 Jan 2020 3:36 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Welcome to all our visitors and members who enjoy all the lifestyle activities that our club offers.  Thirty-nine of us just returned from Snowmass CO where we enjoyed great snow.  Our accommodation's were slopeside, and right across from the hot tub, which several of us enjoyed daily.  Snowmass ranks as the number one spot for me with lots and lots of wide open slopes.   Our next club trip is Salt Lake City UT, which has been getting a lot snow in the mountains. They should have excellent conditions.  

    As said at our last meeting, there will not be a February general meeting or board meeting due to the Salt Lake trip. Please make a note that in March we will be in full swing getting ready for our election of officers in April. My time as President will soon come to an end, and I want to thank everyone for making my time as president a great success. I encourage anyone who wants to volunteer to help our club to please let us know.    

    Our race team hasn't had the best weather in the eastern mountains yet.  I know a race is suppose to happen this coming weekend.  Hopefully, the cold air we brought back from Colorado should let them make snow. Good luck to all our racers.

    Looking forward to seeing you at our next meeting in March.

    Thank you,

    Mike   


  • 22 Jan 2020 3:07 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    For the second year, the Chattanooga Ski Club had a exhibit table on Saturday during the 2020 Lookout Wild Film Festival at the Tivoli Theater. The Lookout Wild Film Festival is a four day event held since 2013 featuring a variety of terrific national and regional outdoor and conservation documentary films on subjects such as skiing, rock climbing, kayaking, trail running, and preservation of endangered wild areas.

    The Chattanooga Ski Club was one of several regional outdoor sport and conservation organizations offering information to the varied audience members. Many who stopped to speak with us were surprised that Chattanooga has a ski club. Many who talked to us said they had never skied or had not skied in many years. Having a presence at events that attract a lot of people interested in skiing, snowboarding and/or travel may help with future membership recruitment.

    There were three movies on skiing, which fortunately are available in full on YouTube: "Lhotse," about two people who climb and ski in the Himalayas; "Zabardast," about a group of skiers and boarders who climb and ski in a remote area of Pakistan; and "REI Presents: Brotherhood of Skiing," about the history of black ski clubs. The hilarious cartoon, "Hors Piste," is sadly not available for free, but the trailer can be seen on Vimeo.

    Thanks to our Publicity Chair, Suzanne Grueser; Joe Wilson, who prepared an informational poster for our table, and Tom DuBose, who coordinated this event with the film festival group.  Thanks also to club members who volunteered at the event: Cindy Dees, Betsy Darken, Joe Wilson, and Tom DuBose. Many club members came to various sessions during the four days of the festival. It was great to see everyone there.


  • 26 Dec 2019 10:17 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Welcome to everyone this winter. Glad to hear everyone got back from the Crescent Ski Council trip to Steamboat with nobody hurt.   But I did hear mother nature threw snow at them on the day they were suppose to leave, causing some delay. 

    Snowmass is coming up in a few days, and we all are excited.   Snow conditions are showing a lot of packed powder and 16 of 22 lifts open as I write this.  So, 90 percent of the mountain is open, with more snow to come. 

    We would like to thank everyone who came out to our Christmas party at our new location.   It seemed to go over very well for everyone.   Thanks to all who brought desserts.   

    At our next general meeting, we are having our buy / sell / swap ski gear event on Jan. 7.  Be sure to RSVP for the meal.

    In other ski news, it was announced this week that Uber is extending its “Uber Ski” program to a number of new locations after having successfully piloted the project in select U.S. cities in previous years. Now, the program is being introduced in a total of 23 locations across the U.S., with both mountain locations and big name cities located hours away getting the green light. But what exactly is “Uber Ski”? Well, it’s simple. Uber users looking for a ride will open the app as usual, and select the Uber Ski option. In doing so, the rider will be guaranteed transportation by a spacious vehicle equipped with 4-wheel drive, and most importantly, either a roof rack or a truck bed for ski equipment. The fee for the service is reasonable as well, as it’ll cost riders just $8.00 in addition to their standard trip fare. 

    Thanks and Happy New Year to all,

    Mike


  • 25 Nov 2019 10:01 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    On Saturday morning November 2nd, twenty brave souls left cold Nashville for the warm, sunny Dutch island of Bonaire.  The flight down was interesting since right after we got over the Gulf of Mexico, the plane turned around and returned to Houston due to a navigation system problem.  After about five hours we re-boarded the same plane to try again.  This time we made it to the island, after 10pm.  Representatives from Buddy Dive Resort met us at the airport and took us on a 10 minute ride through mostly deserted (at that hour) town to the resort.

    The next morning everyone met at one (of the two) restaurants on the resort for the first of our daily buffet breakfasts, complete with pancakes, bacon, sausage, potatoes, fruits, juices, breads, made to order omelets/eggs, and more.  Since we were so late getting in the night before, we were then given a special 30 minute orientation to the island (that is required for all visitors since the water around the entire island is a protected marine park) and to the resort.  After that we received our vehicles, either seven passenger vans or five passenger extended cab trucks (each of our five apartments included a vehicle) for carrying dive gear and tanks.  Next, all the divers went to the dive shop/pier and got wet, checking out our gear and ensuring we had the proper weights to submerge and stay off the coral.  The diving at Buddy’s was some of the best on the island, with two ladders for entering the water and a very short swim to the reef wall.

    Our dive package included unlimited tanks (air or Nitrox) for shore diving and most of us made 2-4 dives a day.  The great thing about shore diving was that we did our dives on our schedule.  Another plus was we weren’t bumping into people on a dive boat when getting geared up or when submerged.  In addition to Buddy’s reef, some of our favorite locations were the Salt Pier, Karpata, and Hilma Hooker (a sunken ship/artificial reef).  Some also did some boat dives to locations that aren’t accessible from the beach.

    Those of our group that didn’t dive enjoyed the snorkeling, usually at the same sites where others in our group were diving.  Due to the protection of the marine park, there is an abundance of coral and fish.  Some of the things seen included barracudas, stingrays, eagle rays, tarpons, groupers, turtles, lionfish, scorpionfish, and spotted and green moray eels.

    On Monday and again on Tuesday, some of our group went on a three hour horseback ride with Horse Ranch Bonaire.  The group was led by Simone through the countryside, including deserts and mangroves to Loc Bay.  Once at the bay they swam with the horses in the bay, then returned to the ranch.

    Monday night everyone went on a Sunset Snorkel Dinner Cruise with Captain Miguel from Epic Tours.   We sailed along the coast of Bonaire and Klein Bonaire where we had two guided snorkel sessions. After snorkeling, the crew prepared a luxury BBQ diner on board our catamaran while we watched the sunset and then the stars come out.

    Wednesday night we had a surprise birthday party for Bobbie Witt.  I’ll leave her age up to your imagination.  During the evening we had pizza and played various games.

    Overall, everyone had a great time and we are looking forward to a return trip.


  • 22 Nov 2019 12:28 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Welcome all guests, members, and visitors.   Winter is around the corner,  ski resorts out west are planning to open before Thanksgiving.   It's always good to see that.   Our club members are looking forward to the trips that will be here soon.

    Before those trips, however, we have our Christmas party on Dec. 3rd, being held at a new location for us,  The Mill.   We are expecting a good crowd.   

    Since we last met, we had a group venture to Bonaire.   I'm looking forward to hearing about that trip at our next meeting. 

    I am proud to say our membership is at 265,  thanks to all the people who volunteer to make our club a "lifestyle" destination.   John Hilbrandt and I had the opportunity to go on nooga.com radio a few days ago and share club information with their audience,   Jeff Styles was a great host and he invited us to come back again.  They're on 92.7 FM.  Our area is growing by leaps and bounds,  as we can tell by increased traffic,  and most people do not realize we have a ski club in this area.   We had some new cards printed up, so if you have a place that might grab the attention of liked-mind people like ourselves, see me or any of the board members to get some cards for display.

    Thank you,   

    Mike


  • 24 Oct 2019 10:39 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    For those of you that are wondering what or who is a Len Foote: “The name Leonard E. Foote is not accidentally linked with the Hike Inn’s unique backcountry setting, commitment to the outdoors, and mission of teaching conservation ethics, outdoor safety, and preservation of wilderness."

    For those of you that have not made this hike with CSC, you are missing out on a two-day trek with great people, an evening of fun and games with NO TV, radio, laptops and, up until this year, cell service.

    This year, we had ten rooms, and we ended up with 18 club members co-mingled with other guests. What is it exactly about CSC members that we had two couples from Florida telling us that they are joining our club as soon as they get home?  We just have fun and enjoy life.

    Is this a hard hike?  Not if you are in shape and do some hiking before you go.  However, if you have just finished tax season 2019 sitting at a desk most of the day, then you will make it to the top, just not with the rest of the hikers.  You will be like me.  Was I slow?  Let’s just say it took me so long that the buzzards were circling waiting for me to die.  I do think others have died on this trail because I saw mounds of dirt piled up beside the trail (big mounds with room for 2 or 3 bodies buried!)

    I will be ready next year!! Go With Us Next Time!!

    Barb




  • 23 Oct 2019 12:10 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Hello to everyone who enjoys the lifestyles and adventures of the Chattanooga Ski Club and to everyone who is thinking of joining us in the future.

    Yay, you can feel fall in the air! Winter is coming, thank goodness. Most of the higher elevations are getting a dusting of snow. A good friend of mine is going to Banff October 20 and he is packing for snowy weather. Let's hope this trend continues so we can all have an outstanding ski season. Seventeen of us just got back from a southern Caribbean cruise. We had fantastic weather this year with no hurricanes! We also had the Len Foote Hike Inn and Crescent Fall Conference in Gatlinburg last week. Looking forward to hearing about them.

    Our November 5th meeting will include a special guest, so be sure to sign up and join us for a wonderful meal.

    Mike


  • 23 Oct 2019 11:47 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Our eight day Southern Caribbean Cruise was a wonderful trip filled with fun, excitement, and adventure. And the weather could not have been better.

    Even though the Carnival ship, the Horizon, was not scheduled to leave the Miami cruise port until October 5, many of us wanted to get the fun started early and flew to Miami a day ahead to enjoy the Friday opulence of the Marriott Biscayne Bay.  The rest flew in on Saturday morning and the adventure began.  Our first surprise was the immense size of the ship.  Being only seventeen months old, the Horizon is the newest of the Carnival line on the Eastern coast, and carries 5,101 passengers and 1,450 crew members.  Our second surprise was the absolute efficiency that was planned into our boarding process.  Many seasoned cruisers commented on the quick and efficient boarding, quicker than we have ever seen.  There were also many positive comments made about the staterooms being larger than many expected.

    As is the case with any new ship, the first task after lunch was to tour the ship to see what it has to offer and learn the layout so we wouldn’t get lost.  This turned out to be a greater task than anyone imagined due to the size and many venue and activity offerings of the Horizon.  It took several days to explore the entire ship, and even near the end of the cruise, we were still discovering many things we had not discovered previously.

    In addition to this cruise being fantastic because of the ship itself, this was also a fabulous cruise because of the exotic ports.  We saw and explored Grand Turk, the largest island in the Turks and Caicos chain; beautiful La Romana in the Dominican Republic; Curacao, the colorful island near South America that comprises a third of the islands commonly referred to as the ABC islands; and Aruba, another third of the ABC islands and home of fantastic resorts, beaches and unusual rock formations.

    Couples and groups went on various excursions at each port.  These excursions adventures included activities such as scuba diving, swimming with dolphins and stingrays, snorkeling, island tours, and a romantic horseback ride on the beach.  The excursion with the most members on it was a visit to an authentic replica of a 16th century rock village (Alto De Chevon), followed by a memorable boat ride down the River Chevon (the river that was used to shoot the movie “Apocalypse Now.”)

    Because we booked this cruise a little later than usual, all fixed seating assignments were already taken.  We thought we would have to settle for eating in small groups rather than as a large group like we usually do on a cruise.  This is a part of the cruise that everyone always looks forward to and is one of the highlights.  At the first dinner, however, after hearing of our dilemma, the Asst. Maitre D took our plea to the head Maitre D, who came to our table and offered to assign us two round tables next to each other at a fixed time so all seventeen of our Ski Club members could dine together for the rest of the cruise.  Thank you Carnival for saving this valuable part of our cruise.

    The food was fantastic.  We chose from a different dinner menu each night with so many great choices it was often difficult to choose.  When faced with two great choices, it always helped when our waiter said, “No problem, I will bring you both.”

    With activities available onboard like the elevated bicycle ride, the gigantic tube slides, the ropes course, the exercise room, the swimming pools, the movies shown on the giant screen above the main pool deck, the iMax movie theater, the 3D movie theater, the amazing live productions in the Liquid Lounge Theater, and the music emanating from every venue every night and day.,etc., etc., there was no end to the things available to occupy, thrill, entertain, and amaze the guests.

    Needless to say, everyone had a great time and is looking forward to more adventures with “The Club.”  Thank you Chattanooga Ski Club for making this group trip available, and thank you Carnival Cruise lines for a beautiful, memorable experience.