California Trail – Oakland Zoo, CA

This new gondola connects the Oakland Zoo to a new, separate $80 million expansion on a neighboring hill.
The bottom terminal is a standard Doppelmayr Uni-G design.
Cabins above tower 3.
loading area.
Towers 1 and 2 are directly adjacent to the return terminal.
This is called California Station.
Uni-G terminal enclosure.
Riding up the first part of the line.
Tower 4 uses large sheaves and has a European-style lifting frame.
After T4, the line is relatively flat with beautiful views.
View down to San Francisco Bay.
Tower 5.
T6 has a third lifting frame style.
The top terminal is located on the first floor of the Landing Cafe.
The typical enclosure only extends part way in before the building serves as a roof.
The turnaround is open to the building.
In some ways, this is the United States’ first urban gondola.
Terminal machinery.
View of tower 7 from the restaurant deck above.
Breakover towers and Omega cabins.
T7 from above.
Towers 5 and 6.
Cabins pass above the forest, simulating a safari. Animals will be added below the gondola in 2018.
Leaving the Kaiser Permanente Visitor Center.
There is no parking rail so the maintenance carrier stays on the line full time.
Tower 6 looking down.
The area below T5 will house American Bison beginning in 2018.
View down towards Oakland.
The cabins are open to the air on two sides, which is awesome.
The Omega cabins are the tallest (skis inside) version.
View up from California Station.
Cabin name plate.
A cabin approaches the summit.
Safari-style windows.

10 thoughts on “California Trail – Oakland Zoo, CA

  1. Mike N June 22, 2018 / 9:13 am

    I would think NYC’s Roosevelt Island Tramway is the United States first urban aerial tram. You don’t have this in your database do you?


  2. Connor Shuff April 28, 2019 / 9:28 am

    I know this is kind of a dumb question but what do lifting frames do?


    • ALT2870 May 1, 2019 / 11:37 pm

      Hoist the haul rope above the sheave train for maintenance or in a worser case, a deropement.


    • Sam A. May 2, 2019 / 9:32 am

      If I am correct, they can also be used as anchor points when the towers are lifted by helicopter/crane.


    • snowbasinlocal12894 May 2, 2019 / 4:48 pm

      They also hoist the haul rope over the tower to lubercant the sheaves. They will attach a sheave from one of the lifting frames when pulling rope to splice it. They also use it to hoist the rope back onto the sheave train in the event it derails. Many uses for it.


    • Max Hart May 2, 2019 / 5:45 pm

      They also keep the crossarm from bending. That’s why Doppelmayr USA made the switch from its 1980s/early ’90s style (the very pronounced trapezoid) to the more rectangular style that they have used since then. That’s also one of the reasons why a lot of Yan lifts have had lifting frames added or entire crossarms replaced.


  3. Connor Shuff May 2, 2019 / 5:19 pm

    Ok thank you.


  4. Loic Esch May 24, 2020 / 6:01 am

    Are the gondolas parked in the contour?


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