Ski Sugarite (Raton)
Operation Dates: 1967-68; 1971-76; 1978-87
Area Stats: (1984)
*Elevations: Top 8,950 feet; Base 8,000 feet; Vertical Drop 825 feet
*Trails: 17; All abilities; Longest Run 2 miles
*Rates: Adult $14; Child $12
*Lifts: 1 Thiokel Double Chair; 1 Surface Lift
*Season: Thanksgiving - Easter
*Services: No lodging at base, Snack Bar, Lounge & Entertainment, ski
and rental shop area, 60% snowmaking, night skiing
History:
Sugarite's slogan was "New Mexico's only Colorado Ski Area."  The
area closed in 1989 under financial problems.  The owners, the Walton
family, were forced to sell their ranch a couple years later.  The land was
in their family for almost a century.

A poma lift was first installed at the ski area in 1967.  The ski area then
closed until the 1971-72.  A ski lift was installed at the resort in 1976 but
it never opened the following season.  Finally, in 1978 the place was in
business but then closed about a decade later.  The lifts and lodge were
removed by the 1991 season.   

Location: About 5 miles up NM
Area Brochure
(click for a larger view)
1983
Area Pictures from the 1990's: *
The Base Lodge
Overview from Google
Pictures from 2006: **
Overviews of the ski area with the lifts and lodge removed.
Old snowmaking pipe and parts from the poma lift.
Have you ever skied Sugarite?
If so,
contact us!
Memories:

"I skied at Sugarite during the 1983-84 season.  In fact, that is where I learned to ski.  (I later became a ski
bum, married a ski bum who is now Lift Ops Manager for Mountain High Resort.)

My whole family (Mom, Dad, & Sister) learned to ski at Sugarite.  There was just a poma lift and a double
that I remember.  The double was only open 1 day during our 4 day vacation.  I remember my sister and I
went up the double and came down most of  the way on our butts.  I also remember my sister and I met 2
college guys from Amarillo (I was a Univ Sophomore, my sister was a HS Sophomore) and skied with them.  
It was a one-day "fling" I'll always remember.

We stayed in a motel in Raton, NM.  Sugarite was where I fell in love with skiing - a love which has
continued for 20 years."
-Zina T
----
I lived in the cabin right next to the Sugarite ski lodge for 4 years. I attended the top lift during the ski days
and played guitar in the lodge at night. The best 4 years of my life. When the lodge sold and i had to move
out it was the saddest moment of my life. I now live in Philadelphia and run a computer consulting firm...
What a contrast. Its nice to see this page and know that it wasn't just a dream.
-Tommy C.
----
"Sugarite was my family's ski area.  I grew up skiing and loved every minute of it.  The memories of Sugarite
are priceless.  It was a terrible day when we had to sell the area.  Even worse was the day we lost my
grandfather Milard Walton whose everything was Sugarite.  I look up on the mountain now and I can still see
him.....he is there, he
has been there, the cowboy, my grandfather, Milard Walton."
-Tausha
----
"Where did time go? I was unaware that Sugarite was no longer around. I, like the some of the previous
posters, learned to ski there in the early 80s. It was a great place to learn. It's a shame they had to tear it
down. When we went to the horse races in Raton, we once went go up to the Lodge for supper. The
landscape is still as beautiful as ever. With this site - you are keeping great memories alive."
-John

"Not only did I learn to ski at Sugarite, I was married in the lodge. A year or two previously I also worked
for Milard and LaBelle one season as a cook. I'll always remember Milard's broiler he had in the kitchen
there. It cooked both sides of the steak at the same time. An amazing grill and an amazing place.  I am sorry
to hear of Lynette Walton Wesselhoeft's passing in December of this year.  Ski Sugarite really was amazing.
There was a magic there."
-Alan G.
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All Rights Reserved.

Pictures thanks to:
* Colorado Ski Museum
** Brad C.

Sources:
The Colorado Ski Museum
John M.