Beaver Creek Announces Red Buffalo Express to Replace Drink of Water

Adding to the big December announcement of new six-packs at Vail, Breckenridge and Keystone, Vail Resorts today revealed another high-speed lift will replace Drink of Water at Beaver Creek.   The new 4,300′ high-speed quad will reduce the ride time from 8.6 to 4.3 minutes and nearly double capacity.  “Upgrading this essential beginner lift will provide high-speed lift access to the amazing beginner and intermediate terrain at the top of Beaver Creek, increasing capacity and making for a seamless lift experience for our guests on the hill,” said Beth Howard, chief operating officer. “We expect this improvement to take significant volume off Cinch Express, Beaver Creek’s second most-popular lift, and it really is an improvement befitting of Beaver Creek’s luxury, family experience, as it enhances a key beginner and family area of our mountain.”   The Drink of Water double is the last remaining lift at Beaver Creek from the resort’s inaugural season in 1980.

Drink of Water will be retired in April. Next season, Beaver Creek will only have two fixed-grip lifts remaining – Highlands and Elkhorn.

The Red Buffalo Express will almost certainly be built by Doppelmayr USA, as Beaver Creek operates an all Doppelmayr/CTEC fleet of 16 lifts.  The four new detachable lifts in Colorado are part of Vail Resorts’ $100 million capital plan this year and we learned this week the six-packs at Vail, Breck and Keystone will be installed by Leitner-Poma.    Eldora, Wolf Creek and Aspen are also likely to build new lifts for 2017-2018.


9 thoughts on “Beaver Creek Announces Red Buffalo Express to Replace Drink of Water

  1. Ryan January 25, 2017 / 11:32 pm

    What’s wrong with just keeping the same name?


    • Peter Landsman January 26, 2017 / 7:16 am

      Red Buffalo is apparently a reference to two peaks in the Gore Range visible from Rose Bowl. Anyone know the origin of Drink of Water?


  2. Walt Schuster January 26, 2017 / 6:19 am

    I worked one season at Beaver Creek as a lift operator so I will only speculate on the name change. There is a run at the top of this lift called Red Buffalo so it makes more sense to have the lift and the run with matching names. Beaver Creek did something similar to this when it built the Birds of Prey Express lift originating from Red Tail Camp. The former Birds of Prey lift started at the top of Chair 6 (Spruce Saddle Lodge) and was renamed the Cinch Express. This also made more sense since there is a Cinch run near the top. The Birds of Prey race course ends at Red Tail Camp so these name changes make sense for that reason

    Now don’t ask why Rose Bowl lift didn’t change names. Its name doesn’t fit either. It seems like one of the founders daughter was named Rose. I don’t know the exact details and I may not have that information correct.


    • Walt Schuster January 26, 2017 / 7:45 am

      according to the Rose Bowl Lift that was just replaced in 2011 used to be the Old Centennial Lift (Triple) that was replaced in 1986.

      Also I think the headquarters for Lift Operations moved. It used to be off of Dally. I know this for a fact since this is where our lockers were and where lift meetings were conducted every morning.


  3. RaflW August 25, 2017 / 11:12 am

    I rode Drink of Water a few times, and after the first ride started timing it. I’m pretty sure I averaged more like 10-12 mins rather that the advertised 8.6 mins due to stoppages. And that was with maybe 1 in 4 chairs even being loaded. Detachable should make offloading better for novices, and restarts are likely to be faster too.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s