Snow Bowl Express – Stratton, VT

This high speed quad from Doppelmayr was among the first lifts Alterra Mountain Company bought after its formation.
The lift replaced a Poma quad and nearby platter lift.
Loading area with Chairkit gates.
There is manual parking at the bottom.
UNI-G-S station.
Towers 1 and 2 are right next to the bottom station.
In addition to the parking, there is a catwalk for grip access.
Lower station overview.
T1-2 side view.
This lift also features a new color scheme for Stratton.
Lift line.
Tower 3.
Lower part of the lift line.
View up the lift line.
Another view down the lift line.
Square tower foundation.
Looking down at tower 9.
Doppelmayr EJ chair with wind slats hung below a DT-104 grip.
Tower 15.
The top terminal is directly next to the gondola summit station.
UNI-G-M station with tensioning inside.
Unloading area and turnaround.
Another view of the top station.
Side view up top.

29 thoughts on “Snow Bowl Express – Stratton, VT

  1. Collin Parsons May 2, 2019 / 2:22 pm

    I love the natural frame created by chair #63 with Bromley in the background. It’s interesting that in the package deal for this lift and it’s two sisters at Tremblant and Deer Valley, that this is the biggest lift in terms of length and vertical, yet it is located at the smallest mountain. I had the opportunity to ride it back in March, and I can say it’s my favorite Stratton lift and the only one that regularly operates at full speed.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Somebody May 3, 2019 / 11:09 am

    Seeing how this lift impacted the skiing experience this season, it makes me wonder why Intrawest never got to this. Liftlines this year were way shorter across the entire mountain, and the terrain this lift services is great, no matter what kind of skier you are. Best mountain improvement since the sunbowl six packs went in 18 years ago.

    Like

    • Collin Parsons May 3, 2019 / 11:14 am

      Intrawest was cheap. Years of broken promises and 17 years of no lift improvements at all. Alterra came in and got it done. I think the choice to get a high speed quad over a 6 pack is fine. It will never be as crowded as URSA where there are 5 other lifts feeding traffic into it, or Sunrise/Amex which are out of base lifts. It’s a lift for lapping the Snow Bowl terrain and serves that purpose well.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. reaperskier May 5, 2019 / 5:38 pm

    Are they planning to repaint the other lifts at stratton in a similar color scheme?

    Like

    • Collin Parsons May 5, 2019 / 6:41 pm

      All their other detachable terminals are just black. The UNI-G offers more color choices than earlier designs so they decided to be creative and add some red. If they get another UNI-G it will probably use this same color scheme but I don’t think they will repaint older lifts with it.

      Like

    • Jon September 22, 2021 / 8:09 pm

      From the web cams, looks like they have started the theme change with AMEX, now sporting the black w/ red trim look of Snowbowl.

      Like

  4. Somebody May 20, 2019 / 5:20 pm

    They missed a naming opportunity with this lift. When they replaced the old sun bowl quad on the other side of the mountain in ’01, they made the new detachable “Sunrise Express”, this one should have been “Snowfall express” to match with that naming scheme.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Donald Reif May 20, 2019 / 10:25 pm

      Why not Sunset Express?

      Like

      • Teddy's Lift World May 21, 2019 / 7:28 am

        Snow Bowl is the name of the area. Most people call Sunrise the Sunbowl Chair. It’s more logical this way.

        Like

        • Donald Reif May 21, 2019 / 11:50 am

          Perhaps Sunrise needs a renaming.

          Like

        • Teddy's Lift World May 21, 2019 / 12:47 pm

          It doesn’t need a rename, but it is just a common misconception around the mountain. One thing that can be confusing for some people is the abundance of lift names starting with s. People get Solstice and South American confused often as well.

          Like

  5. Somebody November 23, 2019 / 9:34 pm

    Stratton is building what appears to be an indoor maintenance building at the bottom of this lift.

    Like

  6. Somebody December 23, 2019 / 7:24 pm
    • Donald Reif January 23, 2020 / 8:27 am

      Like

  7. Donald Reif January 23, 2020 / 10:38 pm

    I think they reused a lot of the tower foundations, at least, when you compare Snow Bowl FGQ’s towers in the background of this picture of the gondola

    ….to this one with Snow Bowl HSQ in the background:

    Like

    • Collin Parsons January 24, 2020 / 5:34 am

      Nope, they did not reuse any because the alignment was changed. It now goes up looker’s right of the trail instead of looker’s left.

      Like

    • Sam Altavilla January 24, 2020 / 9:07 am

      The old foundations have yet to be removed and are still visible on the skier’s right side of the Upper Liftline trail. (I would know because I end up marking them almost every day haha)

      Like

  8. Sam Altavilla September 28, 2020 / 11:03 am

    According to the original plans drawn up by Doppelmayr, the drive terminal was designed to be much different. There was going to be approximately 70 percent carrier parking with the other 30% parked in the terminal with lifting conveyor banks. The parking facility was supposed to be on a much different alignment and the carriers were supposed to be parked in the forward direction with a parallel switching rail. The grip maintenance bay was supposed to be at the end of the parking facility instead of where it is currently.

    Today, the parking rail operates at 100% capacity while being parked in the reverse direction. Carriers pass through a dual-door maintenance bay before making their way onto the parking superstructure. There are no conveyor lifters, but the automatic rail still remains (90 degrees instead of parallel, the carriers come out of the terminal sideways). Stratton finished up the maintenance bay around January and it was built to match the construction scheme of the lift shacks, which I think is a nice touch. I have to admit, it’s very interesting to see how plans can evolve over time.

    Like

    • Woodcore November 23, 2022 / 7:03 pm

      Story behind the re-design of the bottom terminal as I’ve been told is that during the initial excavation of the area designated for the terminal a “stump dump” from the original mountain construction was encountered and it did not provide the proper sub-grade material for anchoring the footings.

      Like

  9. skitheeast September 28, 2020 / 12:04 pm

    This lift has caused problems for Stratton making snow on Upper and Lower Liftline. Apparently, the new alignment puts the lift right in the line of fire of the existing snowmaking tower guns, and this can create an unnecessary icing on the lift. I know Stratton is trying to fix this, but I am not sure what their exact plan or timeline is.

    Like

    • Collin Parsons December 19, 2020 / 7:18 pm

      They can take the chairs off the lift and run the haulrope at very low speed. This would prevent everything from seizing up. Mount Snow does this on the Bluebird Express when they make snow on Lodge. I know they didn’t make snow on Liftline the first season. I don’t know if they did the second season.

      Like

      • Somebody February 1, 2021 / 6:14 pm

        They still don’t blow snow or groom Liftline. I’m honestly fine with it as it has turned into the de-facto designated bump run over at Snowbowl.

        Like

    • Tijsen February 6, 2021 / 9:13 pm

      From my understanding the lift doesn’t effect their snowmaking on the trail. The first year of Snowbowl they didn’t make snow on Liftline as they were installing new pipe alignments for the lower part to avoid the new lift and on the top the pipe was unfinished as they ran out of time. Last year you may have noticed that the trail opened very late and that was because of a frozen pipe on the very steep part of the trail, which kept freezing. This year they are being a little more reserved or trying to avoid making snow under lifts at all since they are a: understaffed and b: limit costs. They didn’t make snow on the lift side of Supertrail or lower standard on the side Amex is on. There are no tower guns pointed at Snowbowl except for a spectrum on interstate and a few ratinks on interstate, which are both used since they are high traffic trails.

      Like

  10. skitheeast December 23, 2020 / 9:06 pm

    Stratton is the only mountain I can think of that built four detachable six-packs before any detachable quads. Getting a single detachable six-pack before a quad is rare in itself.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Chris December 24, 2020 / 1:30 am

      The Rosshütte mountain in Tyrol has 3 detachable six packs, but never had quad chair at all. Just the six packs, two trams, a funicular and a bunch of T-Bars. In earlier it had a bunch of single and double chairs.

      Like

    • julestheshiba June 30, 2021 / 11:01 am

      Squaw valley did not exactly do that but they have not installed a hsq since at least 1998 or whenever kt 22 was built

      Like

  11. Somebody January 7, 2022 / 7:15 am

    Pretty good photo overview of this lift pulled from the website

    Liked by 2 people

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