Minnesota’s Welch Village has announced a deal with Doppelmayr for an Alpen Star quad chair. The fixed grip lift will replace the East Ridge double, also known as Lift 4. The new machine will load about 30 feet to the west of the current Hall and open some time in December. “By moving the bottom of this new lift further to the west, we will be able to open up the bottom of the Harley’s Hollow enabling guests to actually ski and ride in between the new quad chair and the Triple Chair,” said Welch Village President and General Manager Peter Zotalis in a blog post. “There are a lot of exciting aspects to this project (and other projects) that we will share with you over the course of the summer and fall.”
Welch Village also announced the removal of the Bakke double, which two newer lifts made redundant years ago. When this summer’s projects are complete, the mountain will operate six quads, one triple and one double.
Congrats to Welch Village!! I am sad to see 2 old Halls bit the dust, but I don’t much care for those types of drive stations on the above mentioned lifts being removed. Love the chairs and the line gear. Very happy that Doppie will add one more lift to the 2021 list. That’s great business for 2021 for Doppie, Poma, and Sky-T.
It’s been years since I had a Welch pass, but I was always happy when the East chair was running (alas, not too often). To my perception, at least, the rope speed was noticeably faster than on the adjacent quad, and I liked where it unloaded up top.
If they’re going with a quad now, it seems they think there’s skier demand for this much capacity on that handful of runs?
I’d like to see Welch work on higher utilization of Sunshine and the back ‘bowl’. That area is closed a lot. Frankly, rather than relocate the base of East, they could make skier space by shortening Sunshine! The long flat runout isn’t interesting, and the lift ride time is looong.
I wonder if Welch is ever going to add the second back bowl lift that they were planning on, probably not though.
Adding a second lift to the back bowl would open up additional step runs — that’d certainly be a welcome addition.