America’s entry into the 2nd World War dramatically affected the course of skiing in Stowe. One of Stowe’s greatest stars, Marilyn Shaw was denied the opportunity to compete in the 1940 and 1944 Olympics, cancelled because the war. Many MMSC skiers joined the new 10th Mountain Division. It was an era that also brought many new lifts and trails to Stowe.
- Charlie Lord elected MMSC president.
- Charlie Lord directs the cutting of the Midway, S-53 (named after the C.C.C. Company S-53), and Lord trails. To discourage use of the Smuggler Notch highway for skiing, the Roadside Trail was cut parallel to the road between Chin Clip trail and The Lodge.
- Stowe’s Marilyn Shaw (at age 16) wins the National Combined Championship in Sun Valley. She was selected for the 1940 Olympic Team, but the games were cancelled due to WWII.
- Ann Cooke (a.k.a, Nose Dive Annie) is named alternate to the 1940 Olympic Team.
- A Nose Dive record of 2 min. 17.6 sec. was established by Milton Hutchinson (MMSC) in the Vermont Downhill Championship on March 16, 1940. Wendell Cram and Stevia Korzon, both of the Otter Ski Club are combined champions.
- Sugar Slalom held on April 28, was one of the largest races in the country (162 competitors). Sugar on snow provided for first time. Bob Meservey (DOC) and Marilyn Shaw (MMSC) are winners.
- Second single chair in the East (and first in Vermont) officially opened to the public on December 9, 1940, with “Nose Dive Annie”, wife of lift Vice President James N. Cooke, its first official rider. It was the longest and highest in the U.S., and the cost was 60 cents per ride on weekdays, 75 cents per ride on weekends (MMSC members getting a 10 percent discount).
- Marilyn Shaw wins the National Slalom Championship at Aspen, CO.
- Vermont State Downhill held on February 2nd, and Sugar Slalom held on April 26-27.
- The Sepp Ruschp Ski School, sponsored by the Ski Club, commences its third season at the Toll House. The staff of instructors includes Otto Hollaus, Kerr Sparks, Lionel Hayes, Howard Moody, Everett Bailey, Clem Curtis, and Norman Richardson.
- With the opening of the new single chair, Fritz Kramer was hired as MMSP’s first paid patrolman. Kramer lived in the Stone Hut but came down once each week for supplies and a shower.
- State Shelter (Mt. Mansfield Base Lodge) was completed by the C.C.C.
- Early thaw forces cancellation of Sugar Slalom.
- The Octagon was built. It is designed by Livingston Longfellow, a member of the Amateur Ski Club of NY.
- Dan Ryder replaces Charlie Lord as president of MMSC.
- The Club forms Trail Committee and organized meetings with the Lift Company and the Stowe-Mansfield Association and made plans to raise money for much needed trail conditioning.
- The Skimeister trail was opened. The trail saw the onset of the Ski Meister races – forerunner to today’s ski bum races. Races are run every Thursday afternoon and are sponsored by George Morrell of The Lodge and Sepp Ruschp. Gold, silver and bronze pins are awarded by the sponsors.
- The first Mansfield Merry-Go-Round (4 downhill races in 2 days), was uncorked in March by Howard Prestwich. Bob Meservey, Dartmouth jackrabbit, toted the fastest aggregate time on the four downhill races, and Marilyn Shaw was first in the women’s division. The Nose Dive, Chin Clip, Bruce and Steeple provided a stern test of downhill racing under widely different snow conditions.
- The Eastern Downhill Championships are held on Nose Dive.
- Henry Simoneau (MMSC) and Marilyn Shaw (MMSC) win Sugar Slalom.
- Mr. & Mrs. William Henderson take over management of Ranch Camp.
- C.C.C. disbanded in January 1942 as World War II commenced on December 8, 1941.
- The Nose Dive parking area was enlarged and a parking fee of 25 cents was charged by the Forest Service.
- Arlburg – Parallel techniques chief topic of conversation (C. Lord)
- Pearl Harbor and America’s entry into the war leads MMSC to suspend operations, although it maintains a small volunteer ski patrol.
- Sepp Ruschp spends the war years as a flight instructor in the U.S. Army Air Corps.
- Many of Stowe’s male skiers join the 10th Mountain Infantry Division, including Kerr Sparks, Clem Curtis, Norman Richardson, and Ev Bailey.
- The von Trapp family came to Stowe and built their first lodge.
- Cornelius V. Starr arrived on the scene and envisioned more improvements to the Mt. Mansfield facilities.
- The Lift operates on the same reduced wartime schedule as the previous winter – 10 to 12 and 1 to 3:30 on weekdays, except Wednesday when it is closed; and 10 to 4:00 on Saturday and Sunday.
- As was the policy of the previous winter, the Club activities were carried on insofar as possible, with the exception of competitions. Erwin Lindner, honorably discharged mountain trooper, had solo job of patrolling the mountain during the week days.
- Service members received complimentary Club membership.
- Abner W. Coleman replaces Dan Ryder as president of MMSC.
- CV Starr returns to Mt. Mansfield for the greater part of the 1944-45 ski season, and like many others, becomes impatient with the long lift lines for the one and only chairlift. He pledges to put up 51 percent of the funds needed for another lift (Mt. Mansfield T-bar in 1946), and begins partnership with Sepp Ruschp. A new company, Smugglers Notch Lift Co. was formed to construct and operate the new lift.
- The Stowe Derby was conceived by Erling Strom, Rolf Holtvedt, Knud Andersen and Sepp Ruschp while brushing trails. Originally a race for skiers over 35 years. The first race was won by Sepp Ruschp.
- The Stowe-Mansfield Association has been reorganized and new by-laws adopted, and an office has been established in Stowe to administer such details as information, accommodations and transportation.
- Sepp Ruschp has the following instructors on his staff this winter: Bob Bourdon, Bob Deforest, Joan Sparks and Mary Mather. Operates branch out of Toll House and the State Lodge at the foot of the Lift.
- The first general meeting of the Club since the fall of 1942 was held in Stowe on the evening of May 25, 1945.
- Stowe-Standard Races are inaugurated. Weekly citizen downhill race run (by Ski School) each Wednesday at 12:30 pm.
- The Smugglers Notch Lift Company opens 4,000 foot T-bar, serving Tyro, North Slope, Standard, and Gulch.
- Sepp Ruschp wins second Stowe Derby.
- The Club’s race program includes the Eastern Downhill Championships, Mt. Mansfield Merry-Go-Round (downhill), Mt. Mansfield – Stowe Derby, and the Sugar Slalom.
- Sugar Slalom cancelled due to poor snow conditions.
- Club members who fell in World War II are Richard C. Austin, A.R. Crathorne, William R. Ricker, Claude R. Rossi, and James M. Stevens.
- Erling Strom wins Stowe Derby.
- With a view to providing activities for junior skiers, the Club inaugurates a tentative program of events designed to interest the younger skiers in the area. In charge of the program is Langdon Cummings of Barre, John Moody of Montpelier, and Roger Burke, physical education director at Stowe High School.
- Mansfield Hotel Company acquires 3,000 acres on Spruce Peak from the Burt Company in the fall of 1947.
- State Ski Dorm opens.
- Luther Booth succeeds Abner Coleman as President of MMSC.
- Otto Ruuskanan wins the Stowe Derby.
- The first Vic Constant Memorial downhill race is held on the Lord and Standard trails, starting at the Octagon. Kalle Nergaard wins the trophy donated by Lowell Thomas. The race was dedicated to Victor Constant, well known in Stowe and one-time club member, who was killed training for the U.S. Nationals.
- Seventy boys and girls between 12 and 17 years old, from Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, Massachusetts and Connecticut participated in the Club’s second annual junior invitation meet on March 20. The event consisted of downhill, slalom, and cross country.
- Roger Adams was President.
- CV Starr and Ruschp form the Mt. Mansfield Company and acquire all interests at the mountain, and begin a significant expansion.
- Roland Palmedo, disenchanted with the commercial growth at Stowe, sells his interests at Mt. Mansfield and moves a ways down Route 100 to develop another ski area – Mad River Glen.
- Erling Strom wins Stowe Derby, and Robert Bourdon wins second Vic Constant Memorial
- The Eastern Downhill Championships are held on Nose Dive.
- Ski School with 12 instructors with Kerr Sparks in charge.