ANCHORAGE (AP) -- After more than 30 years, the ski train that hauled hundreds of skiers from Anchorage to untouched snow in the Kenai Mountains is coming to a halt.
The Nordic Ski Association and Alaska Railroad sponsored the train trip each spring. Complete with a polka band, the ski train was a rolling party. Skiers would spend the day skiing and would dance in the train cars on the way home.
But ski club officials said rising insurance and operating costs as well as avalanche worries and regulations have put an end to the party.
The last ski trains are scheduled for March 24th and 25th.
There's talk of setting up a future weekend ski train to go someplace near Talkeetna, which would happen only if volunteers step forward to organize it. But even if that happens, polka dancing in the baggage car is history.
''This is absolutely the last year for the polka band to be in the baggage car,'' said Tim Stone, ski club president. ''The railroad wants passengers in their seats, as I understand it, because of some federal regulations.''
Peninsula Clarion ©2013. All Rights Reserved.