Annual Cushing Crossing at Squaw

April 4, 2016

elephantskiercushingcrossingThis wildly entertaining competition challenges local lunatics and gregarious guests to cross the vast and chilly waters of Lake Cushing (really it’s a pond) on skis, a snowboard or any ski or snowboard-based vessel.

Notorious for its colossal crashes, hilarious costumes, and ultra-creative pond skimming contraptions, the annual Cushing Crossing comes to the frigid waters of Squaw Valley.

Pond Skimming has become a fixture on spring event lineups at ski resorts around the world. However, it was at Squaw Valley, 26 years ago, when the event was first conceived. At the end of each ski season, when the large pond at the base of the mountain (“Lake Cushing”) had melted, Squaw Ski Patrollers would attempt to ski across Lake Cushing as a ceremonious goodbye to the season.

The ritual developed into a public competition and later, Squaw Valley’s signature spring event. Since then, plenty of ski resorts have their go at pond skimming events, but none do it quite like Squaw Valley. Perhaps it is because the characters at Squaw are a little more daring, a little more agile, and a little bit better on sticks. Or maybe it is because “Lake” Cushing is a real pond, rather than a tarp-lined ditch or kiddie pool. Whatever the reason, the Cushing Crussing blows other pond skimming events out of the water, and the thousand plus spectators each year are testament to that.


The legendary competition will be limited to the first 50 registrants, and participants can register on the day of the event at KT Base Bar. Registration opens at 9 a.m., and is $20 per competitor, with prizes including roundtrip airfare for two on Alaska Airlines, a Bronze Tahoe Super Pass and cash prizes.

All entrants must be 18 years of age or older. Life preserver and a helmet are required. For more information, please see