There truly is no real way for me to capture the spirit and history of today’s ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new Werner’s Schuss trail. This fall, Alpine Meadows held a trail renaming contest for three trails; and among them was Blue Trail. Melanie Jackson won her suggestion to rename Blue Trail to Werner’s Schuss.
Tenured Tahoe residents realize the significance of the new name: Originally from Immenstacht, Bavaria, Werner Schuster was invited to teach at Alpine Meadows by Luggi Foeger in the 1960′s. In 1963, Werner started at this 3-year old mountain as the Assistant Ski School Director. In 1964, he was the new Ski School Director at the mountain. Understand, though, this was a time when Alpine Meadows was literally world-renowned for its ski school; and skiing was on the cusp of being one of the largest, fastest-growing sports in the United States. Teaching at Alpine Meadows in the 1960′s was like teaching world socioeconomics at Radcliffe. It was a big deal, and the school was Werner’s passion. His students loved him; and still do. Many were at Alpine Meadows to honor him today.
Werner, his wife Hanni, and his granddaughter, Genevieve, were at the mountain today. He had ‘first tracks’ down Werner’s Schuss, and he was joined by many of his former instructors. Here are some great photos from today’s festivities: