News Roundup: Unboxing

  • Lizards prevent construction of an announced chairlift project in New Zealand.
  • Berkshire East and Catamount owner Jon Schaefer finds success staying away from detachable lifts and acquiring used lifts from across the country.
  • Ikon Pass sales rose 60 percent over last year.
  • Cockaigne, NY will reopen in January after many seasons closed.
  • Frost Fire, ND reopens after a missed season.
  • A 3S gondola to Snowbird and Alta would cost more than $300 million to build and $12 million a year to operate.
  • Vail Resorts looks to build it first D-Line chairlift, not in Colorado or California but at Perisher.
  • The Forest Service green lights construction of a new Big Burn lift at Snowmass.
  • A new version of Eagle’s Rest comes Jackson Hole.
  • A downed tree causes extended stops at Silver Mountain.
  • The one year old Blackcomb Gondola went down Sunday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday this week.
  • Disney Skyliner guests can now call a dedicated phone line for information when gondolas stop for longer than usual.
  • Lift service returns to Tamarack’s Wildwood zone tomorrow.
  • Copper’s Tucker Mountain becomes lift served for the first time today.
  • Regardless of whether Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadows build an interconnect gondola, a private ski area may open nearby.

16 thoughts on “News Roundup: Unboxing

  1. Teddy's Lift World December 27, 2019 / 12:04 pm

    What the hell is wrong with the Blackcomb Gondola? It is having so many issues… At this point, they should’ve just kept Solar Coaster and Wizard.


    • Skier December 27, 2019 / 12:41 pm

      Whistler has had bad luck with Doppelmayr gondolas. The other one had that tower fill with ice and snap in half however many years ago that was.

      Also the brand new Steamboat gondola drive failing catastrophically the second day it was open this year. What’s up with new Doppelmayr stuff?


      • powderforever45 December 27, 2019 / 12:44 pm

        Don’t forget to mention the issue on the Disney Skyliner.


        • pbropetech January 1, 2020 / 4:04 pm

          I can’t name my source, but that was completely operator error. Had the Skyliner been a Poma it still would have happened.

          Liked by 1 person

      • Ryan December 28, 2019 / 9:15 pm

        Was the tower that filled enough with water and froze really the fault of Doppelmayr?


        • ok January 1, 2020 / 11:08 am

          Yea. They could’ve engineered their systems better so that type of stuff doesn’t happen.


        • pbropetech January 1, 2020 / 4:06 pm

          No. We’ve found water in tubes before on different manufacturers. Doppelmayr and Poma have both retro-engineered fixes for this issue.


      • Joe Blake January 2, 2020 / 10:49 pm

        Chair 2 at Bogus is running well so far. The only time I have thought pulling out a Riblet was a good idea.


    • Rob Withey December 27, 2019 / 3:49 pm

      Most of the issues we had last winter were due to lack of training as the lift was only delivered the day before we opened. The construction timeline was the real culprit. This weeks problem related to an electrical component that was intermittently failing, and took forever to find.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Donald Reif January 1, 2020 / 6:36 pm

      Blackcomb ought to consider building a new Solar Coaster Express, perhaps ending at Rendezvous but starting a little ways below the gondola midstation, like around the bottom of Grubstake (so as to be accessible from the Excalibur Gondola), and a Cruiser Express running from Excalibur’s midstation up to the Blackcomb Gondola midstation; for in case either of the Blackcomb gondolas have troubles.


  2. bobby smith December 27, 2019 / 5:49 pm

    Ah, can we now all finally admit it’s not Peaks and Vail just can’t run anything? Now their lifts installed by them and run by them for their entire life are breaking down left and right.

    Maybe try not nearly doubling the ski areas they own in one purchase…

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Will December 27, 2019 / 7:32 pm

    Peter, looks like the lizards will not prevent the construction of that lift in NZ forever, just for this construction season. Not sure why you used the phrase “permanently.”


    • Peter Landsman December 27, 2019 / 7:36 pm

      I think that article has changed since it was first posted. Sounds like they may be able to figure something out for next construction season. Thanks.


      • Teddy's Lift World December 27, 2019 / 7:48 pm

        New profile picture? I like it! Where is it from?


  4. Skiing Stig December 29, 2019 / 10:37 am

    I feel sorry for Cockaigne not being able to open before Christmas break in WNY becuase right now its all melting away and not looking promising in the beginning of January. I will still go and check it out when they do open. I use to ski there when we had a fireman hose races and always had a fun time without worrying about the hill. Not a lot of vertical at Cockaigne but a great family atmosphere. I hope it still there.


  5. Donald Reif December 30, 2019 / 10:09 am

    I wonder if Snowmass will repurpose the quad chairs from Big Burn to boost capacity on Elk Camp and Two Creeks (what with all the new visits from Ikon passholders). Would be no different from when they repurposed towers and chairs from Fanny Hill to create their two learning fixed grip quads in 2006.


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