Killington Resort and a local developer will invest $110 million to revitalize Bear Mountain over the next few years, including the addition of a fixed-grip quad chair at South Ridge next summer. Most of the plans involve base infrastructure and real estate but the lift news is exciting given the South Ridge area has been without direct service since its triple chair was removed in 2011. The $3 million quad chair will be the first new lift at the East’s most visited resort since the addition of the Skye Peak Express in 2008. “This Bear Mountain Revitalization Plan is especially exciting for me because I know that our core group of season pass holders has wanted a new South Ridge lift since the day we removed the old one,” says Mike Solimano, president and general manager of Killington Resort. “With the trail work our team has planned, this layout should greatly enhance the Killington experience by improving connectivity between the north and south sides of the resort.” The Bear Mountain Quad, a 1979 Yan will remain for now but is likely to be upgraded in the future with new development at its base.
Lift Engineering built the old South Ridge lift in the shape of a triangle, a wacky setup that will not be repeated. The new version will follow the path of the old light side from the bottom of Roundabout to an unload near the summit of Killington Peak. “From the top of the Bear Mountain Quad, the long-awaited replacement of the South Ridge lift will give skiers and snowboarders easy access the resort’s north side terrain including the Canyon and Snowdon areas, or easy access to the many trails in the sunny South Ridge area,” says Jeff Temple, director of mountain operations. Leitner-Poma is likely to build the fixed-grip quad as a longstanding supplier to Killington, but there’s also a chance it could go to Doppelmayr with Powdr Co.’s recent history. In further good news, The Beast also announced an agreement yesterday to host World Cup ski racing in both 2017 and 2018.