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Encyclopedia > Ski tow

A ski tow, also called rope tow, is a mechanised system for pulling skiers uphill. In its most basic form, it consists of a long rope loop running over a series of wheels, powered by an engine at the upper end. Skiers grab hold of the rope and are pulled along.


The first ski tow was apparently installed in 1933 by Alec Foster built the at Shawbridge in the Laurentians outside Montreal, Quebec.


It was quickly copied at Woodstock, Vermont in New England in 1934 by Bob and Betty Royce, proprietors of the White Cupboard Inn. Their tow was driven by the rear wheel of a Ford Model A. Wallace "Bunny" Bertram took it over for the second season, improved the operation, renamed it from Ski-Way to Ski Tow, and eventually moved it to what became some of Vermont's first major ski areas, including Suicide Six.


Their relative simplicity - a car engine, some rope and a few pullies was all that was needed - made ski tows popular and contributed to an explosion of the sport in the United States and Europe. Before tows, only people willing to walk back uphill could ski; within five years, more than 100 tow ropes were operating in North America.


Although largely supplanted by chair lifts, which have the great advantage of not blocking off a portion of the mountain, rope tows are still common at ski areas around the world, particularly small areas or in relatively flat portions of ski areas devoted to beginners (often called bunny slopes).


See also


  Results from FactBites:
 
Ski tow - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (289 words)
The first ski tow was apparently installed in 1933 by Alec Foster built the at Shawbridge in the Laurentians outside Montreal, Quebec.
Their tow was driven by the rear wheel of a Ford Model A.
Although largely supplanted by chair lifts, which have the great advantage of not blocking off a portion of the mountain, rope tows are still common at ski areas around the world, particularly small areas or in relatively flat portions of ski areas devoted to beginners (often called bunny slopes).
Ski Tow (1623 words)
Ski Tow Opening Day 1936 To compound the difficulty the tow line bent to the right about halfway up to conform to the edge of the cleared slope.
The ski slope was intended to be an economic boom the the village.
The ski slope was incorporated July 14, 1960 and an addition to the lodge, the fourth tow and additional trails were built with cash on hand.
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