11 May 2016
By Jack Keating
In 1936, one idea revolutionized the concept of skiing- this idea became known as a chairlift. The very first ever chairlift was built upon the back of Proctor Mountain in Sun Valley, creating a foundation for the massive ski resort that we all see and love today. The actual Sun Valley Resort was created by the Union Pacific Railroad as a destination resort in order to increase the number of people riding on the railroad. They created a number of lifts, the first ever being the one on Proctor. Interestingly, the design of the lift came from a completely different place than Sun Valley itself. They were built based off of machinery that was originally used for loading and unloading, oddly enough, bananas off of ships. The two different uses for the relatively similar machinery stand in stark contrast to each other, one being to transport bananas, and another to transport skiers. Proctor Mountain and its infamous ski lift created an entire valley and for lack of a better word, a skiing revolution which took over the country, and the world.
Yet in the modern age people seemingly disregard the one thing that created the infrastructure of their home. Proctor Lift is no longer in use, and it has not been for many a year. Now, Bald Mountain has set a skiing dynasty within the valley, as it is one of the most popular places to ski in America. A massive trend in society has been made clear time and time again. Out with the old, in with the new. And the Proctor Lift stands as a perfect representation of this concept. It is relatively sad to see it up there, unused, seemingly unwanted. Yet it continues to watch over the valley and the resort that it once helped create, stoically baring the pain of never being used or rarely even thought of, year after year.