Architecture

Squaw Valley Chapel's parabolic roof.
Squaw Valley Chapel’s parabolic roof.

The sanctuary is an excellent example of modern architectural design, circa 1960. Two huge pillars, one on each side, support the free-form hyperbolic parabola roof made of reinforced concrete. This parabolic arch is reminiscent of Eero Saarinen’s masterpiece, the TWA terminal at Idlewild Airport commissioned in 1956, opened in 1962.

The stained galss over the entry doors to the sanctuary depicts the fall colors of the High Sierra.
The stained glass over the entry doors to the sanctuary depicts the fall colors of the High Sierra.

A unique adhesive-bond stained-glass masterpiece surrounds the sanctuary, depicting the four seasons in the High Sierra in a cubist collage. This is an excellent example of the modernist movement in stained glass, the epitome of which is Coventry Cathedral, which opened in 1962.

Poulsen Peak from the Sanctuary
Poulsen Peak from the Sanctuary

The vaulted roof over the altar frames Poulsen’s Peak, named for the founder of Squaw Valley, providing those inside with the inspiration of the magnificence of God’s creation, both within and without.