Echo Mountain to Become The Front Range Ski Club

Denver mom buys ski hill, plans to turn it into a race training facility

Racing at Echo Mountain. PHOTO: ECHO MOUNTAIN

Sorry, jib tots, your hometown railyard is donezo, because your mom wants you to be a racer.

Echo Mountain, formerly Denver’s neighborhood jib hill, was sold this week and will now become The Front Range Ski Club. According to Sheldon Good & Company, who conducted the sale, the mountain will operate on a membership basis and “have a heavy emphasis on after-school programs for young alpine racers looking for advanced training.”

Nora Pykkonen bought the mountain at auction for an undisclosed price. Her kids are racers, and she says she was sick of schlepping them to Vail for races and training. So she decided they needed a closer option.

Echo, which has been for sale since June, will get an overhaul including an organic restaurant and a homework station, Super G course and snowmaking equipment. Pykkonen Capital LLC plans to spend $5 million in improvements, and they’re bringing in coaches like former U.S. Ski Teamer Sarah Schelper-Gaxiola, to coach the World Cup racers of tomorrow.

According to the Denver Post, “Pykkonen plans to upgrade the resort with ski-race training in mind. Her team will set up the mountain as a gym, with stations designed for honing skills like jump starts and sliding. Two surface lifts will rush racers back to the top more speedily than the chairlift. Racers will finish each run in a video tent, reviewing their form before grabbing another lap.”

Sounds fancy.

The mountain will open in November. Read more about the plans here.

Posted In: First Chair, News, Stories

Add a comment

  • Mallthus

    I can understand “why” she wanted to do this, but in doing so, she’s taken a successful mountain that appealed to the 99% and made it 1% only.

    That sucks.

  • It doesn’t matter.

    That is to say, Buck Hill west.

  • Yamahabdv

    This is sucks! It was a great place to go hit rails and jumps without having the cocky ski racers around you. Also took away a good place for people learn how to ski or board with out breaking the bank. These people should be wanting to share our love of the sport with others. A lot of people can’t afford a $70+ ticket.

  • bigbsurfer

    Because she has the money to do so. And just like it said, she was tired of schlepping all her kids up the hill to Vail. So that’s about one less Ford Expedition or Surburban on I70 with 6-8 less schleppers skiing Vail! That’s just fine with me!

  • Peter Preston

    It was not successful as a freestyle park, Only $700,000 in revenue and the owners put like 8 million into it. They were losing a ton of money.

    That 99% drove on by to Breck, Keystone or Vail.

    If she can turn it into a Buck Hill West that would be great for USA Ski Racing.

    There are plenty of great parks in CO but very few dedicated race centers.

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