Frank Bulkley - Sport Builder - 1978


Hall
It was a snowstorm that frustrated Frank in his job of selling flying lessons one day in 1939 and inspired a visit to a private school run by an aunt.  There he talked the students into trying skiing, and thus was born Denver's famous Eskimo Ski Club, and Frank's career. The process of getting city youngsters to Winter Park led to Frank's founding of the ski school there and his selling the Denver and Salt Lake Railroad on the idea of a ski train (he was then named Winter Sports Promotion Agent for the railroad).  Frank rode the ski train, which was continued by the D&RGW, every weekend for 26 years, with an exception only for his wedding in 1949 when he married his sweetheart, Nancy Van Stone. Frank Bulkley learned to ski at Berthoud Pass in 1935, chartering a bus from Denver to bring his friends and six siblings to the mountaintop ski area. When Winter Park opened in the 1939-1940 season, Bulkley ran the ski school and ski shop. In those first years at Winter Park, Bulkley started using the Denver & Salt Lake Railroad to bring kids to Denver on Saturdays. By World War II the Saturday "Frank Bulkley Ski Group" was 300 strong. After teaching skiing and rock climbing to the 10th Mountain Divison in the 87th Infantry and serving in the 42nd Infantry in Europe during WW II, Frank resumed his involvement with the Ski Train and then opened the Eskimo ski shop from 1946 to the early 1970's,  which was the first in Denver to offer season rentals.  By the time of his induction into the Colorado Ski Hall of Fame in 1978, his unique ski club could boast over 25,000 "graduates". At the Ski Train's peak it packed over 20 coaches with as many as 1,600 kids each sporting either green, blue, black or the coveted race-ready rainbow patches on their jackets reflecting their skiing prowess. It is said, Bulkley blazed trail for countless kids.  Frank was born July 26, 1914 and passed away April 2012 at the age of 97. (Deceased)