“It’s an honor to be in this position,” Culp said in an interview with the Aspen Daily News. “My first interest as a skier—loving backcountry skiing—is skiing powder, and (Silverton’s) got to be the best place in Colorado to do it. As a Colorado resident, I couldn’t think of a better next phase of my professional and personal life to be able to be a steward of Silverton.”
The pioneering advanced- and expert-only area was acquired from owners Aaron and Jennifer Brill, who officially opened it for skiing in the winter of 2002-03. In 1999, the Brill’s purchased about 220 acres of land that would encompass the base area, and later obtained an operating permit from the Buruea of Land Management to access an additional 1,300 acres for skiing and riding. In 2010, they secured a permit to access about 20,000 additional acres for heli-skiing. “It’s a pretty emotional day,” said Aaron Brill, who landed in Silverton after scouring the West for locations to establish a no-frills, steep-and-deep ski hill for expert skiers.
Silverton’s terrain is accessible from one double chairlift. The resort offers guided and unguided access to a variety of challenging slopes, chutes, and open bowls, making it a popular destination for experienced backcountry users.
“Silverton itself is one of the most authentic, genuine, kind of gritty destinations out there that any skier and snowboarder that lives and breathes that lifestyle has on their checklist,” Strasbourger told the Aspen Daily News. “It’s a rite of passage for a certain kind of quality skier and snowboarder. It’s super exciting to take the reins of something that has such an incredible following and such a great reputation.”
The acquisition includes 600 acres of land at the ski area, and the new owners have successfully applied for a transfer of the special-use permit for the heli-skiing operation.
The Brills will continue to own and operate their heli-skiing operation in Alaska.