Big Red Express – Whistler Blackcomb, BC

Doppelmayr replaced a detachable quad with a six pack for the 2022-23 ski season at Big Red.
Tower with large foundation on the lower part of the line.
Creekside Gondola was also replaced in 2022 next door.
View riding up the long lift line.
Upper part of the line with European conical towers.
Unloading area near the Roundhouse.
Side view of the top drive station.
This lift has numerous towers with combination assemblies due to its topography.
A conical support tower.
Middle part of the lift line.
View down.
The lift actually descends for a short period about half way up.
Flat section of the line.
Another tower with combination assemblies.
View up the lift line.
Support tower near the bottom.
Maze area.
The bottom terminal and tower 1.
Loading area with queuing gates.
Riding up the line.
View back down.
Unloading area.
Breakover towers 22 and 23.
View near the summit.
A large hold down tower.
Side view of the bottom terminal.

13 thoughts on “Big Red Express – Whistler Blackcomb, BC

  1. Donald Reif February 23, 2023 / 7:22 pm

    Compared to the old quad, the lift has way more combi towers (six instead of three).


  2. Todd February 23, 2023 / 8:10 pm

    What is the reasoning for using European towers vs. the American style? Can they handle more load? Or is it just have to do with where the lift was manufactured?


    • Aussierob February 28, 2023 / 4:08 pm

      Doppelmayr had production availability in Europe so we got the conical Euro towers, not the straight North American ones.


  3. Skier February 23, 2023 / 9:19 pm

    It’s not very red. The color scheme is a bit boring in my opinion and not very fitting of the name Big Red. Nice looking lift otherwise.

    What language is the writing on the terminals that’s not English? Is it a direct translation of Big Red and the elevation?


      • whistler local February 24, 2023 / 12:04 am

        The Squamish nation language for big red is on the left side at the bottom and the lilwat nations is on the right. It’s the First Nation names. It’s actually really cool. Creekside has them as well.

        Liked by 2 people

        • Whistler local February 24, 2023 / 12:06 am

          Whoops I just meant that up Squamish is on the right and lilwat the left.

          Liked by 1 person

    • Andrew K February 24, 2023 / 1:54 pm

      I agree the color scheme leaves a little something to be desired. I was kinda hoping we’d see some red maybe on the ends of the terminals as well or (even though Vail would never do this) red seats. Oh well.

      I was super curious about what they were going to do about that rock that gave us the cool wrap-around tower on the original, probably should have figured the most obvious solution was to do exactly what they ended up doing.

      I’m surprised to see that this lift was only built with a 50% download capacity. I keep holding out hope they’re going to open it up for the summer like they did that one time in 2018, and that a new lift was going to be the push to bring that back, but I’m guessing not now. Probably only for biking.


      • Aussierob February 28, 2023 / 4:07 pm

        Trying to build this for 100% down load was going to add significantly to the cost and complexity of it as it has a an auxiliary diesel. There are no immediate plans for summer ops on this lift.


        • John March 12, 2023 / 5:43 pm

          No plans for summer ops as in no plans for mountain biking either? I feel like running big red would be huge for capacity issues this year, especially keeping people out fitz zone coming from creek…


        • Aussierob March 13, 2023 / 12:49 am

          No plans to run Red for anything. It doesn’t provide access to anything you can’t get to from Garbo or VG. There are new trails in Creekside to attract more traffic down there, so Creekside and Garbo laps are going to be the main areas and, whatever we can get up the VG will ride the Fitz zone.


  4. Donald Reif February 24, 2023 / 12:38 pm

    In a way, the “Redline” name from the original Yan HSQ feels like it’d be just as appropriate a name given that the terminals just have a single red stripe instead of being entirely red.


  5. Paul March 1, 2023 / 10:10 pm

    It’s a great lift, the load area clearing more space improvement means more room to have ponytrail/h86 bypass to expressway. The bars are normal vs the green kiddy stop ones. Even the lines seem at a flat grade as old red often had a slope going on
    The only negative is it seems is run at 800ft/min 4m/s as standard operating speed , which sucks as it’s a LONG lift. Garbo and even midweek afternoon when no green lift lines offer noticable more ski time for the same terrain


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