August is when most new lifts really start to take shape. After months of digging, tying re-bar cages and pouring concrete, the public always seems to wonder whether the lift is going to be done on time. I’ve been hearing it for weeks from locals on the tram here. Then towers get set in a matter of hours and the perception changes. Terminals go up almost as quickly.
The Teton Lift is at that point with towers and terminals going vertical. The Ranch parking lot is getting emptier by the day as terminal parts make their way up the hill for installation. Trail crew is finishing grading the new trails and working on erosion control.
The return lift shack arrived from Salt Lake last week and boy does it have a lot of buttons. An automated maintenance lock-out mode. ‘Start drive station unmanned.’ A really large touchscreen. I can only imagine the drive controls will look like. Remote start will be especially nice on a lift with a top drive terminal in a very rugged spot. On big storm nights, JHMR already has three “night creatures” at the top of the gondola, tram and Thunder to start lifts. (and in the case of the tram, to start digging out the top dock.) The top of Teton will definitely have patrol and possibly a fourth night man.