Everyone has them. Those phrases that make you want to clutch your hair and scream at the top of your lungs until it stops. "Hot enough for ya" is a classic. "Wassssssup?" is a new contender. My local favorite though, would have to be "...it's a good project, it's just in a bad location...." I hate it even more when they're right.
This one started many moons ago with a spoof email claiming Starbucks was going to hollow out the Stawamus Chief and put an elevator to the top. Ahhh yes, we all had a good chuckle and got on with our day. Recently another even more fanciful tale was told and knowing now that it's true isn't helping me come to grips with the fact that?
"They want to put a gondola up the Chief."
Upon each uttering of that phrase the reaction is the same "Phtt, No. Wait, you're kidding, right?" Insane as it might be, it appears that there are / were people looking into this. You can't fault them for trying, because without looking into it they wouldn't be able to realize that this idea will never have the community's support. Sure, this would be a great money maker. Money aside however, the idea is simply silly.
Where do you begin? Thousands of locals, millions of travelers, it's impossible to put into words what a single glimpse of that rock means to so many people. Anyone who ever has, or ever will use the area would beg you not to let this happen. Not to mention the spiritual implications with that rock being a proud symbol of the Squamish Nation. Putting a gondola up the Chief would be like our neighbors putting an elevator up Roosevelt's nose. There is no dignity in a gondola going up the Chief's nose.
At first mention of the proposal I was shocked to read Ted Nebling supports the idea. Holy cow, after years of neglect, Ted Nebbling is talking to us again. This leg man for Gordon Campbell had little to say for so many years as they closed down our courthouse, sold out BC rail, while actively trying to destroy our hospital and woman's shelter. Now he wants a gondola on our Chief. With his immanent retirement perhaps this gondola idea is akin to a spiteful farewell gift from a deadbeat dad.
But for every reason why the Chief idea is ridiculous, there's a dozen reasons why the Tantalus idea is brilliant. The mere thought of a gondola up to Echo Lake gets me giggling like a school girl. The area in question is the massive mountain range a stones throw to the west of us. Without a bridge that area has been all but inaccessible, and the terrain is simply amazing. With a gondola and a world class hut system on the outlying peaks we could seriously be looking at heaven on earth potential. The choice is easy, don't Disneyland the Chief - Swiss Alps the Tantalus Range.