2017 Eaglecrest Slush Cup
Article and Photography by Lance Nesbitt
Saturday, April 8th 2017
Juneau, AK – The origin of the Slush Cup goes way back to the late 1920s when two men, Cliff White and Cyril Paris, skied up Healy Creek to the Sunshine Meadows area in Alberta, Canada. They were headed for a cabin built by the Canadian Railroad, high in the Canadian Rocky Mountains.
The two planned to use this location as a break during their journey across the Great Divide. The snow was deep and the two men did not find the cabin they were looking for and instead slept in a hollow they dug in the snow. They awoke the next day to poor weather and broke a trail over Citadel Pass. Their hardship became historic as they were the first people to ever ski the area, which caused the awareness and growth of this great ski area in Banff National Park. Later that spring, skiers played in the snow runoff, and so began the long standing tradition of what became known as Slush Cup. From then on, skiers would annually play and splash, laugh, drink and sing in the waters as the snow melted at the end of winter.
The Slush Cup in Sunshine was opened to the general public in the 1980s. Each year, dozens of people try the slush run with thousands more gathering to party. The event in Canada has inspired the creation of similar competitions in ski destinations in the United States, especially Alaska.
The Slush Cup returned to Eaglecrest Ski Area here in beautiful Juneau, Alaska, after a two-year absence. Competitors attempted to clear a massive slush pit with 90,000 gallons of water in a man made pond over 100 feet long on skis, rafts, snowboards, or any chairlift approved equipment. The event this year was named Party Animals and the competitors were of all ages ranging from 8 to 50.
The competitors this year vied for best costume, best accuracy, and biggest show-off awards. It is not every day you can see a person in a monkey costume screaming down a ski slope with a blowup banana under their arm, or a person holding a can of beer. This year’s event had a nice size crowd and the weather held off on the slope. I am looking forward to attending next year’s Slush Cup, and seeing what the creative people of Alaska will come up with next…
Credit: Lance Nesbitt
Click here for more information about the 2017 Slush Cup.