"Nice day trips, a little lunch along the way, it makes a wonderful day off," said Alexander.

In the winter, the top of the tramway can see up to 8 feet of snow.  It's perfect conditions for cross country skiing, snowshoeing, sledding, and even the building the occasional snowman. 

"You can be in your swimming pool in the morning and jump in your car and within 10 minutes you are up in the snow," said Smith.

There is also 2 restaurants, gift shops, a natural history exhibit and viewpoints. 

"This is one of my desserts, I have to say, I look forward to being able to come up, maybe once a week, twice a week if possible," said Alexander.

But that's not always possible, twice the tramway was threatened by wildfires and they were forced to shutdown. 

"Back in the 80s we had a large fire here that came probably within a few miles of the tramway," said Smith.

Just this summer, the Mountain Fire came within a mile and a half of the popular landmark. 

"The fires have come close but have not harmed the tramway in anyway," said Smith.

Part of the reason, is the tram itself.  For both wildfires it transported equipment, firecrews, even water to areas that would have otherwise been inaccessible.

"The firefighters did a wonderful job of protecting us," said Smith.  And preserving the natural beauty that generations have now grown up with.

"We have people that come back generations after generations to go and see the snow or they go up to have a picnic because this is where their parents brought them when they were kids," said Smith.

As the tram celebrates 50 years, they are already looking ahead. 

"In the future we will be looking for new and better things to add to the environment," said general manager Rob. W. Parkins.

Already plans are in the works to make it even easier to go hiking.

"I can get down there getting back up is a bit of an experience, we call that heart attack hill by the way," said Parkins.

Within the next two years a motorized track will be built to take you to the trailheads from where the tram disembarks.

"We hope to be here for another 50 or 100 years would be even better," said Smith.

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