Powdr Co. will invest a whopping $16 million on lift improvements at Killington Resort this summer, adding two new chairlifts and upgrading the cabins on the K-1 Express Gondola. The Snowdon Quad will be replaced with Vermont’s fourth six-place bubble chair, turning the current 10-12 minute jog into a four-and-a-half minute minute blip. This new flagship lift will move 3,000 guests per hour and feature bubble chairs along with indoor parking. “While we are committed to staying core to our beastly advanced terrain, we are also putting the focus on our blue family-friendly terrain.” says Mike Solimano, president and general manager of Killington Resort in a release. “The investments we’re making will re-shape the guest experience for years to come. Uphill capacity will increase to 48,000 per hour and the downhill enhancements will create more diverse terrain for all levels of skiers and riders.” Built by built by Leitner-Poma of America, the new Snowdon lift will be similar to the bubble sixers at Mt. Snow and Okemo.
The old Snowdon quad, which used a mix of new and used Poma parts when it was built in 1987, will move to South Ridge. A triangle-shaped Yan there stopped carrying skiers in 2011 and the terrain hasn’t been directly serviced since. The new quad will follow the downhill alignment of the old triple and feature new hangers, grips and electrical controls.
K-1 will see all new Sigma Diamond 8 cabins to replace the CWA Omegas from 1997 along with a new haul rope. Stratton’s gondola received the same cabins in 2014 and Killington will keep K-1s cabins as spares for Skyeship 1+2. Powdr will also finally complete the gondola’s cabin parking facility so the shiny new cabins can be stored inside.
The new lift and two relocations will cost $7.8 million with the gondola upgrades totaling $2.2 million. If all that wasn’t enough, the Beast of the East is also going to add Axess RFID ticketing for 2018-19, relocate the Snowdon Poma (built in 1958!) to Ramshead and make significant trail improvements. These moves represent the largest capital program at Killington in more than 20 years – since the American Skiing Company days. Welcome to lift announcement March!