Argentine – Keystone, CO

Looking up the lift line.
Yan towers and chairs.
Towers 1-2.
View up the first part of the line.
Tension station. The counterweight is hundreds of yards away next to the Peru Express.
Return bullwheel.
Top drive station/unload.
Unloading ramp.
See the counterweight?

31 thoughts on “Argentine – Keystone, CO

  1. Ryan July 14, 2017 / 10:22 pm

    The original Argentine was a 1970 Riblet double and then it was replaced with this Yan double in 1977. Any idea why?


    • Donald Reif March 2, 2020 / 5:21 pm

      Hard to find photos of the old Riblet. But here’s one:


  2. Cameron Halmrast July 15, 2017 / 10:44 pm

    I’ve always wondered the same thing. Either it was engineered wrong and derailed on a regular basis or it had a design defect where the counterweight was bending the bottom terminal like on KT-22 at Squaw. Without any photos of the original lift, it’s hard to judge so hopefully an old timer has some knowledge.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Donald M. Reif March 15, 2019 / 10:11 pm

    Keystone’s master plan calls for a high speed quad to replace Argentine, starting at the current location but having a midway turn station around Schoolmarm, and then running to the top of Paymaster. (Which would allow for more efficiency in uphill traffic, and give the lift more usage, rather than only be an alternate route to get to the Montezuma Express when the Peru Express goes 101).


  4. Donald Reif May 30, 2019 / 2:50 pm

    There are 21 towers on Argentine, though I don’t know how many chairs it has. From tower 10 to tower 13 is when you’re above Lower Haywood. It’s between towers 13 and 14 that you cross lower Schoolmarm, and between towers 17 and 18 that you cross over the west approach to the Montezuma Express lift.


  5. afski722 February 10, 2020 / 10:18 am

    How often has Argentine even spin in recent years, in particular this season?
    Per the headline on the main page, it says that in the USFS plan, they have indicated the plan to remove Argentine with the pending Peru Express replacement project this summer.


    • Donald Reif February 10, 2020 / 12:50 pm

      Pretty rarely. I’ve never managed to catch Argentine running when I’ve skied. I think it’s only run when things are really backed up at the Peru Express. Otherwise, I think someone was saying on another thread that ski patrol only uses this in the morning when getting patrollers up the mountain, or something like that.

      Liked by 1 person

      • New England Chairlifts & Skiing February 10, 2020 / 1:01 pm

        Think it’s run a few holiday weekends. Might run this weekend for president’s day


  6. Coloski September 29, 2020 / 4:53 pm

    Yeah, It only runs when the lines at peru are jacked or on most weekend powder days.


  7. Coloski January 22, 2021 / 6:03 pm

    How does that counterweight work if it’s not pulling directly on the rope?


    • Utah Powder Skier January 22, 2021 / 6:11 pm

      It is pulling on the bullwheel, but redirected to a remote location. What I don’t understand is why they hid the counterweight. There’s definitely enough room at the bottom


      • Donald Reif January 22, 2021 / 6:33 pm

        This isn’t the only Yan to have a hidden counterweight. Look at Alpine:


  8. Michael January 22, 2021 / 9:39 pm

    YAN actually designed a few lifts that way in the ‘70s. The idea was the counterweights were taking up space at base area lifts that could be utilized for skier queuing so Yan moved the counterweights to remote locations. Alpine, as shown by Donald, was fairly straight forward- angle sheaves at the rear of the longitudinal beam. Look up Copper Mountain ‘High Point” lift and Discovery (Checkerboard) at Keystone. The counterweight rope actually does a 180 degree turn at the rear of the longitudinal beam and then exits the front of the beam to be deflected to the remote location of the counterweight!

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Lukas Valenta April 13, 2021 / 12:28 pm

    Why doesn’t it run anymore? I never saw it run when I was there it stood there for ages!


    • Jonathan April 13, 2021 / 3:29 pm

      Argentine did not run often, however it was mainly used to transport patrol up the mountain in the mornings, and take traffic off of Peru during the busy season. Don’t quote me on this, but I think the lack of Argentine running this past season was due to Keystone being short staffed. They did spin it for guests on closing day last Sunday.


      • pbropetech April 13, 2021 / 4:05 pm

        They even advertised that on local radio up here- ‘come get a last lap in on Argentine!’

        Liked by 2 people

        • Tyler Baroody April 16, 2021 / 2:43 pm

          Especially since those last laps are the LAST laps – Keystone is removing it.


        • pbropetech April 19, 2021 / 8:53 am

          I know. That’s why I posted it.


        • Lukas Valenta April 23, 2021 / 5:12 pm

          Why is Keystone removing Argentine…?


        • Donald Reif April 23, 2021 / 6:26 pm

          Old lift, maintenance nightmare, has only served as backup for the Peru Express these past 31 years.


        • liftdino April 26, 2021 / 8:51 am

          She looks fine to me, She doesn’t look old.


    • liftdino May 6, 2021 / 10:07 am

      Like is it getting fully removed or are they adding a new ski lift?


      • Peter Landsman May 6, 2021 / 10:09 am

        Peru Express is being replaced, Argentine is being removed and not replaced.


  10. Tyler Baroody April 16, 2021 / 2:44 pm

    Is the counterweight cable underground?


    • Kirk April 16, 2021 / 7:31 pm

      In the trees at about 45* angle


    • Donald Reif April 16, 2021 / 8:13 pm

      You crossed under it while getting in line for the Peru Express.


  11. skitheeast April 18, 2021 / 3:01 pm

    Can someone explain to me why they are removing this lift with the installation of Peru Express 2.0? I understand it really is not used more than perhaps 10 days a year, but does it not make sense to have a backup? Or for those peak days when Peru will inevitably be overloaded?


    • jcpierce05 April 18, 2021 / 3:49 pm

      On closing day I was talking to someone from lift maintenance. He was telling me that in order for it to operate for another few seasons, they would have to do a complete gearbox re-build and more. With parts becoming harder and harder to find, it just isn’t worth it to keep the lift up and running anymore.

      However I do think they should have kept it until at least next summer in case there are any issues with the new lift.


  12. Carson April 18, 2021 / 7:15 pm



  13. Ryan April 18, 2021 / 11:26 pm

    Rust in peace.


  14. COSpringSkier April 24, 2021 / 8:14 pm

    I’m going to miss this lift, it ran pretty regularly in the 90s and early 00s, last time I rode it was probably around 2005. it operated for night skiing in the 90s and was really cool riding up at night in the quiet and dark unlit trees. RIP Argentine


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