Nordic Valley Seeks to Add a Fourth Chairlift


Mountain Capital Partners no longer plans to build nine new chairlifts and one of the world’s longest gondolas in Northern Utah but a scaled back expansion of Nordic Valley is moving forward.  The previous vision hinged on use of Forest Service lands and received chilly public reception.

The resort recently applied for a conditional use permit to add a new lift on 347 acres of entirely private land south of the current ski area.  The updated project includes 50 acres of new snowmaking coverage and an approximately 4,400 foot chairlift dubbed Lift 5.  Photos included with the application depict Skytrac lifts, indicating the new lift would be fixed-grip.


Back in 2018, Mountain Capital Partners forged an agreement to operate Nordic Valley, becoming the firm’s first property in Utah.  MCP specializes in modernizing historically under-capitalized resorts across the Southwest.   “The proposed project will allow for an improved guest experience for the surrounding communities and will compliment and improve the existing ski operations at Nordic Valley,” said the Colorado-based company.  “With the addition of snowmaking, Nordic Valley will be able to minimize the impact of low natural snowfalls and offer a more consistent product to its customers.”


11 thoughts on “Nordic Valley Seeks to Add a Fourth Chairlift

  1. Mike B February 11, 2020 / 1:51 pm

    I get that this plan is more feasible than the original, but I still have to question the logic of dropping this much capital into a resort that will top out at 7K feet and likely get little more than half the snow if its neighbors in the Ogden area. This must be a play to attract the local market b/c even with a 1600′ drop, Nordic Valley won’t really be much of a blip for destination guests.

    How they can make this pay off w/o the high margin destination visitor or w/o a track record of drawing a loyal core (Wolf Creek this ain’t) or a captive market (e.g. AZ Snowbowl) is a mystery to me.


    • Ryan Murphy February 11, 2020 / 2:25 pm

      There might be a market for locals who are frustrated with commercialization at Basin and Pow Mow. I’ve spoken with multiple people on lifts who are driving from the north side of SLC to the Cottonwoods because they don’t like Pow Mows current ownership. Key word is might.


      • Mike B February 11, 2020 / 5:50 pm

        Makes sense. I could certainly see locals not thinking the Summit Series folks were their cup of tea. And Snowbasin is certainly not oriented towards locals. But it is on the Epic Pass, which makes it pretty attractive for area residents. Basically, they need to really thread the needle in finding their customer, b/c there’s a pretty narrow set of circumstances where someone would choose Nordic Valley over local competitors. They’ll have zero margin for error in either ops or marketing.


        • Che guevara February 11, 2020 / 8:18 pm

          I think if the needle was ever going to be successfully thread it would’ve happened by now. Nordic Valley has been around for 50 years and has burned up the capital of a few owners. I’d really like to see Mountain Capital succeed seeing as they have some iconic properties under ownership such as Snow Bowl and Purgatory. I wonder why they’re deploying capital on worse than marginal properties like Nordic Valley, Hesperus and the biggest head scratcher of all, Elk Ridge. Some ski areas are just destined to revert back to nature while others live on. I get the need to diversify into a colder latitude but there are better targets that would eventually become available. Maybe Coleman just has a management contract at NV and isn’t on the hook if the skiers don’t show up. That would make more sense.


    • Randy February 12, 2020 / 11:09 am

      Pretty sure Nordic Valley is 100% open for night skiing. I bet that’s their big draw.


  2. Ryan Gardner February 11, 2020 / 7:47 pm

    GOOD. Leave my Eden/Liberty alone!! We like it quiet and peaceful!


  3. Jason Harris February 12, 2020 / 5:32 pm

    Could Nordic Valley expand to its larger plan later if it wanted to? Or will they never be able to add the gondolas and all that other stuff if they put this lift in?


    • Joe Blake February 13, 2020 / 6:27 pm

      Let’s hope they can’t. Never mind that they have the best vibe of the Ogden Valley joints. Lewis Peak is busy enough without adding lifts.


  4. Michael Stahler February 13, 2020 / 9:29 am

    That’s nice, but are they going to do anything about the existing lifts? The Summit Double is pretty decrepit and it seems that at least one person falls off it annually. I don’t understand the logic of expanding when the core mountain has some pretty dated lifts.


  5. G E Ferrell June 27, 2020 / 6:19 pm

    Let’s face it, ski area development is a lot like building golf courses. It has nothing to do w/selling greens fees, it’s all about the real estate. This crew already depletes their h20 resource making snow on the lower mountain prior to holiday season. Last summer they added a new pipeline to the top of apollo lift as well. Just don’t see where the h20 resource will come from to make snow on their new terrain. Finally, as fine stewards of the land; have a look at the mess they made of the two ponds they utilize for their snow making system on the old golf. I guess it’s ok to draw the h20 level down 7-9′, kill the fish, and create a toxic body of h20 that can’t be consumed by your dog or be safe for your kid to swim in. CAVEAT EMPTOR.


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