Alpine Slide Celebrates 45th Anniversary
Author: Oliver Mauk
Category: Explore The Mountains
The Alpine Slide at Bromley has a legendary history and gave rides down the mountain for the 45th straight summer in 2021. As the first Alpine Slide in the United States, it’s referred to as “The Grandaddy of Them All”, a moniker usually set aside for the world-famous Rose Bowl college football game. There are now at least 25 different places in the United States (and many more worldwide) where you can find alpine slides, all thanks to German engineering and a man named Stig Albertson.
Albertson originally was looking for ways to drum up business in the summer at the mountain. The only thing Bromley had running at the time was the scenic lift ride, which was on an old, slow riblet double that ran to the summit.
“First we tried turf skiing on Lord’s Prayer,” said Albertson. “When that didn’t work, we had to start thinking about other ideas.”
That’s when his brother sent him some news clippings from a Swedish magazine. These clippings contained information about new German technology and the world’s first alpine slide. It was originally built with a steel track before the technology allowed for asbestos cement and later fiberglass.
Albertson was immediately enthralled by this idea and began working out an agreement with German company Demag Corp. to design an alpine slide for Bromley. Demag sent two people to the US to perform a survey of the mountain, and soon after the design of the slide began to take shape.
Albertson then took the designs up to a factory in Montreal. They were experts with the materials needed to create the slide, and they made the molds for all of the track pieces. Over the course of the next year, the track was laid out and eventually was ready for its first riders!
The slide made its debut on 4th of July weekend in 1976. The news about this new attraction had traveled, and people were traveling from near and far to test out this new technology.
“We had tremendous crowds right away. There was a 3 ½ hour lift line on opening weekend and the road was jammed,” said Albertson.
Now in 2021, the Bromley Alpine Slide is giving its 45th straight year of rides. While the 3+ hour wait times may be gone, people still flock to the mountain to ride the “grandaddy of them all.” Many parents who rode the slide as kids are now bringing there kids to experience the same joy and thrill that they did many years ago.