History and Skiing in Sun Valley
The road trip from Southern California to Sun Valley actually started in the remote mountain town of Ely Nevada, about four hours north of Las Vegas. Even though we had been through Sin City and on the highway for nine hours, the historical ghosts of Sun Valley were visiting us in this Old West outpost. The iconic Hotel Nevada has hosted celebrities since the 1930s and 40s, when they were en route to Sun Valley upon the resort's illustrious opening during that era; indeed, we stayed in the Gary Cooper suite. Along with Cooper: Marilyn Monroe, Clark Gable, Lucille Ball and Errol Flynn all joined Sun Valley's most famous resident Ernest Hemingway during Hollywood's golden age for skiing, hunting, fishing and general revelry. In 1939, Papa finished his book For Whom the Bell Tolls in a suite in the Sun Valley Lodge after beginning it in Cuba and Key West. In present times people of all stripes still live, and flock seasonally, to this beautiful area in the Wood River Valley. We met everyone from crusty local hunters in beat up Chevys heading a short drive out of town to hunt wayward wolves to legendary mountaineer Ed Viesturs and Rolling Stone founder Jann Wenner. Even the slopes of the excellent Bald Mountain give enthusiastic nods to history, naming ski runs after Olympic medalists Christin Cooper, Picabo Street and Kaitlyn Farrington. Sun Valley is often bathed in glorious sunlight as it has for eternity, enticing those in the know. Shoot, even the Dalai Lama visited in 2005
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