Ski Apache opened under the name “Sierra Blanca Ski Resort” during Christmas of 1961. Amazingly, twenty-six hundred people an hour were fast carried up the ski run crest via three T-bar lifts. In 1962, the very first mono-cable four-passenger gondola in North America was built to accommodate a greater number of skiers. And it seems just in time as twenty-five thousand skiers showed up for the second season.
Since 1963, the resort has been owned and operated by the Mescalero Apache Tribe. Only two years after its official opening in 1961, Robert O. Anderson, the wealthy oilman who built and opened the slopes, sold the resort to the able hands of the Mescalero Apaches. It wasn’t until the 1984-85 season that the slopes were appropriately named “Ski Apache”.
The wood-spired Main Lodge was designed by Victor Lundy … proclaimed as America’s Outstanding Architect in 1958. Since the opening season of 1961, this lodge has stood statuesque, an unfailing sentry below the crest. With wood spires reflective of the surrounding pines, the Lodge mirrors the natural beauty of the Sacramento Mountains. Lundy succeeded in introducing Modernism architecture with a practical eye towards the skiers’ needs.
- The alpine peak of Sierra Blanca is over 12,000 feet
- Elevation at “the top” of the Gondola is 11,500 feet
- Positioned geographically to have the best skiing weather in North America
- Annual snowfall over 15 feet!
- 55 runs and trails – 20% Expert, 60% Intermediate, 20% Beginner
- 11 lifts including New Mexico’s only 8-person Gondola to the top
- Enhanced snow-making all the way to the top
- All-day ski instruction programs
- Vertical drop of 1,900 feet
- Over 750 ski-able acres