Never get lost while skiing again

1:57 PM, Dec 15, 2007   |    comments
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"How to get to what run to meet someone or what restaurant; how to get down a hill," said Meikl, who works at Breckenridge Ski Resort.

Marcus Needham thinks he has another way to answer all those questions.

"What our company does is we make ski resort maps for GPS's," said Needham.

His company, Mountain Dynamics, has come out with GPS devices for the slopes that take trail maps from Vail Resort Mountains and puts them in the palm of your hand.

"You download our maps and you can see where the lodge is. You can see the ski trails, the chair lifts and parking, things like that," said Needham.

The GPS technology will also soon be on Sprint phones, so if you have a friend with the same software, you can see where they are and they can see where you are.

"You can also set up a buddy list and see exactly where your friends are on the mountain," said Needham.

To demonstrate, he pulled out his cell phone in Breckenridge and showed 9NEWS exactly where a co-worker was skiing in Vail.

"I could just pull his name up on my buddy list and it showed me the Vail map and I could see he's right next to the Lionshead area," said Needham.

The software also acts just like car GPS systems, pointing skiers in the right direction on the mountain, even telling them what runs to take in relation to their skiing ability.

"If you said you were a blue skier it will make sure you will only get there on green or blue runs, you can actually have an ear bud, this in your pocket and as you ski along it will tell you just like in a car turn left in 200 yards," said Needham.

It's so impressive even information guides like Meikl who has the mountain memorized, thinks these GPS systems are something to talk about.

"Sounds like some good technology," said Meikl.

Prices on the GPS units range from $200 to $400 and then you download the map software from Mountain Dynamics. If you don't want to drop that much money, in about a week ski shops in Vail, Breckenridge and Keystone will be renting the devices.

You can learn more about ski slope GPS units by going to their Web site at www.mountaindynamics.com.

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