Snow Summit, CA

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One thought on “Snow Summit, CA

  1. skier72 December 22, 2019 / 4:07 pm

    I believe the ringer double was actually a very early detachable lift.

    “Although in 1952, Ringer was hurting for lift parts for a lift that he recently installed at Snow Summit in California, which made history as America’s first monocable detachable lift. The lift opened in January of 1953 and had a length of 5,000 feet with a vertical of 1,500 feet. For this lift, Ringer used the automatic couplings off old German cable-car sets Ringer made the necessary modifications to make this lift work. Each chair had a sheave with the clutch that was attached to the grip. The lift was operated by a person who pushed the chairs around the contour to the area where the riders would board the lift. Then the operator would push the chair further to a spot where the spring-loaded clutch would open the jaw and then close onto the moving haul rope. When the chair arrived at the top station, the clutch would disengage, allowing the grip to detach from the haul rope. Once the riders unloaded from the chair, a lift operator would then push the chair around the contour and send it back down. Unfortunately, the final story on this detachable lift wasn’t a happy one. Dick Kun, who is the president of Big Bear Resorts, which owns Snow Summit remembers “The design was unnecessarily advanced and complicated for the technology of the times. It was labor-and-parts intensive.” The first season the lift operated, a chair fell of the haul rope when its clutch failed to engage properly. The riders sustained injuries, but luckily didn’t die. But the fallowing summer, the chair derailed on the uphill side, knocking the sheave off the chair as it crashed into a tower dropping the chair and killing one passenger. The lift was never operated again after this incident.”


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