Snow Ghost Express #4 – Whitefish, MT

This lift indirectly replaced a rarely used Stadeli triple in a significantly longer alignment.
The top part of the alignment ascends above tree line.
View back down the long lift line.
Breakover towers 23, 24 and 25.
Lift overview.
Loading area with automated gates.
View inside the return terminal.
Riding up the line.
Combination assemblies on tower 12.
Nearing the summit.
View back at T17.
Tower 20.
Arriving at the drive terminal.
Leitner DirectDrive.
Braking systems and direct drive with small diesel evacuation engine in the background.
View from the top station.
Drive station overview.
Outside operator controls at the top station.
Inside desk controls with tablet.
Side view of the breakover and LPA station.
Unloading area.
Tower 22 view.
One of many towers with combo assemblies on this lift.
Upper lift line.
View down at T17.
Middle part of the lift line.
View up the middle part of the line.
Tower 9.
Base area.
Side view of the top station.
Lift line seen from the bottom.
Maze area and return terminal.
Tower 1 with heated concrete below.
Upper station overview.
LPA six place chair.
Another view of the return terminal with internal tension carriage.
Extended lift line with old Chair 4 alignment to the right.

8 thoughts on “Snow Ghost Express #4 – Whitefish, MT

  1. Collin Parsons February 16, 2023 / 5:35 pm

    This lift effectively replaced 3 old and shorter fixed grips. It starts at the bottom of Lift 10, goes to the top of the former Lift 5, and serves all of old Lift 4’s terrain in the process. 5 was relocated in 2017, 4 was just scrapped, and 10 no longer operates in the winter.


    • Donald Reif February 16, 2023 / 5:51 pm

      Lift 5 started where tower 18 currently is.


  2. Donald Reif February 16, 2023 / 6:45 pm

    Although Snow Ghost and Big Mountain do have a lot of terrain overlap, they do serve different functions. Snow Ghost is the way onto the mountain for those starting at the Base Lodge, and for lapping everything on the main face from Toni Matt over to Inspiration. However, it doesn’t quite get all the way to the Summit House. For that and access to Big Creek, one has to take Big Mountain, which starts from the Village and accesses all the same trails as Snow Ghost, as well as Big Ravine, and direct access to the North Bowl and East Rim areas.


  3. Thomas Warr March 14, 2023 / 8:58 pm

    There is a rumor the cable will need to be replaced this summer. I don’t believe it, but would like your conformation.


    • Joe Blake March 14, 2023 / 11:06 pm

      Haul ropes often need resplicing a season or two after install. Maybe that’s what was first whispered in the giant Game of Telephone we call ski areas.


      • Thomas Warr March 15, 2023 / 8:08 am

        Thanks for the clarification. Is this because the new rope stretches, and resplicing is to take out the slack?
        I appreciate this blog as a way to squelch the strange flying rumors. Snow Ghost Express is the best upgrade to Whitefish Ski Resort in recent memory. You guys do a great job!


        • pbropetech March 15, 2023 / 10:16 am

          Correct. Most (not all) haul ropes do require shortening fairly quickly due to ‘construction stretch’. Our Flyer’s rope barely made its first season; we had to detension the lift every night for three weeks to avoid hitting the rear stops.


      • Joe Blake March 15, 2023 / 7:08 pm

        In a roundabout way, rope stretch is why I am in bikes instead of the ski world. I was an inexperienced grunt at CM, rattle-canning motor rooms and rebuilding Riblet sheaves and hitting Stop at hopefully the right time. My and PBRT’s brother needed some help the weekend Crystal was gonna resplice New 3 back in the day. I try to put family before work whenever I can, so I asked for the weekend off. The maintenance manager at the time (fired some time ago now, hopefully living his best self or whatever the kids are saying these days) wouldn’t budge, so I just no-call/no-showed. He fired me and put me on No Rehire, which also cost me a possible patrol job. I saw the cat/trail crew boss that weekend and asked why he wasn’t at the hill splicing since he was, like, THE on-hill grabby/diggy/pully machine guy, and he said “we weren’t even scheduled to splice.” 22 or whatever years later, I have still not forgiven.


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