Sanctuaries in the Snow

The Aspen Ski Lift No. 1 Plaque (Aspen Mountain)

This plaque, installed by the Aspen Historical Society, is near the base of old Lift No. 1 and the Shadow Mountain lift on Aspen Mountain. 

Prior to 1946, the mountain had been the site of skiing using a crude boat lift, and by the use of the jeep trails up the back side of the mountain on Midnight Mine Road.  The foundation of the ski area in 1946 was accomplished by the building of the single-chair chairlift, Lift No. 1, which opened on December 14, 1946 as the longest chairlift in the world at the time.  Lift No. 1 was superseded in 1971-72 by two double chairlifts, Shadow Mountain and Ruthie's.  Access to the mountain was radically changed in 1986 with the installation of the Silver Queen Gondola, a gondola lift which ascends to the summit of Aspen Mountain, with a vertical rise of 3,267 ft (996 m).

Although there are a few factual errors in this article, see this for more information about this lift:


See "Aspen Walking Tour:  Lift One" by the Aspen Historical Society.  Published on June 7, 2013.  History Coach Mike Monroney tells the story of Lift One: (1:20)

See this AspenModern page:

Photos of the plaque and its surrounding area are below.  The last two photos were taken in April of 2020.

Also, this plaque is part of a Facebook photo album that covers various signs and plaques on Aspen Mountain (you do not need to have a Facebook account in order to view the album):

If you have any photos of or information about this item that you would like to share for use on this page, please send to the author at [email protected].


Click on images to enlarge.