Ski Trail Pins
March 18, 2004
As I travel to different mountains, I like to collect pins of different trails I skied, typically the black or memorable trails. I started at Stowe about 6 years ago with Nosedive, at the time a very difficult trail for me.
The more I go to bigger resorts, the more I find that these trail pins are hard to find. I typically find them in small shops in the towns near the resorts. This process gets harder each time.
My question is, does anyone else collect the trail pins or do you just collect mountain pins? Most of the pins I find seem old and could be leftovers from the 80's and early 90's. I've noticed on friend's coats (who have skied much longer than me) have trail pins but this may be an old fad. Those of you who have skied longer, can you give me your opinion?
I have been collecting pins for years. I agree that the trail pins have, by and large, gone by the wayside in many places. I recently bought some at Blue Knob with Extrovert trail depicted and of course, at Stowe. Stowe seems to be more in tune with the collector and you not only get to buy the pins, but they also sell you the authentic large trail signs for some of their most memorable trails like the Front 4... But again, that's Stowe...
My wife collects pins from the resort and I like to go with a hat.
Snowshoe is celebrating their 30th year and they have 30 year pins. I got mine from Shavers Center.
Is there are a collectors market for ski pins? I have a friend that has pins from many (if not all?) of the resorts he's skied at in his 25+ yrs ski life. He has them mounted in glass case and it looks pretty spiffy really. Anyway, the thought struck me about whether there was a collectors market at that time...
I think there is a collector's market but it has changed. Where you used to have the trail pins, they are now mountain pins.
Pins are still a collectible in many different areas, one of the biggest is probably the Olympics. It is still big in skiing as many skiers and boarders have pins on their clothing. One of the board instructors at Liberty had a pin from the recent X Games, so even that generation is getting the pins.
I think trail pins are more memorable than mountain pins because you had more emotions getting down that tough slope. I did buy a Corbet's Couloir pin in Jackson Hole last week. It took me all week to build up the nerve to go look at it. Once I did, they had closed it off. I'll have to hold on to the pin until next year when I can try again.
I didn't notice until now that you mention the difference in the type of pins. Come to think of it, I have the Motts Canyon (dbl black) trail pin from Heavenly mtn at Lake Tahoe.