Snowmass, CO

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47 thoughts on “Snowmass, CO

  1. Maxwell Uguccioni May 14, 2019 / 4:21 pm

    Why can’t Dopplemayr lifts run at 1100 fpm?


    • Kaden K (nedakalTNT) August 12, 2019 / 7:52 am

      Wrong place, but there are dopps that can run at 1100. Timberline at Copper Mountain is an example, although it doesn’t go that fast very much anymore.


      • powderforever45 September 25, 2019 / 5:46 pm

        Also Summit Express at Keystone


        • powderforever45 October 3, 2019 / 8:40 pm

          To add on to the list Gem Lake Express at Big White.


      • Donald Reif September 25, 2019 / 7:42 pm

        I bet many of Snowmass’s HSQs run at 1,100 fpm due to their long distances. (Sheer Bliss is a mid-mountain lift, and it covers a distance almost as long as Keystone’s Summit Express. Two Creeks is longer than almost any other high speed quad in the state except for, I think, Sunshine at Telluride)


        • powderforever45 September 25, 2019 / 8:38 pm

          Sheer Bliss is rated for 1200


        • AO January 17, 2023 / 3:00 pm

          None of Snowmass’ HS lifts normally run at 1100 fps. Most are rated for 1000, but run between 850-950 fps


  2. powderforever45 October 1, 2019 / 8:06 pm

    Why is Sheer Blisses design speed so fast? Lengh?


    • Donald Reif October 1, 2019 / 11:49 pm

      Sheer Bliss covers a distance that’s akin to that of the Beaver Run SuperChair, as in more than 9,000 feet.


    • AO January 17, 2023 / 2:51 pm

      Full speed on Sheer Bliss is 1,000 fpm


      • ShangRei Garrett January 17, 2023 / 4:20 pm

        1000 is probably the max speed they run it at, but I definitely trust the spreadsheet, which says that it is capable of 1200 should they want/need it to run that fast


        • AO January 17, 2023 / 5:52 pm

          It’s on the internet, so it must be true! I’ll grab a sharpie and correct the data sheet in my maintenance manual for that lift tomorrow…

          Question I have is: where did Peter get the 1200 fpm figure?

          Liked by 2 people

        • Peter Landsman January 17, 2023 / 6:19 pm

          From the manufacturer at the time of construction. They sometimes make mistakes reporting and lifts sometimes get modified over time.

          Liked by 4 people

        • AO January 17, 2023 / 7:15 pm

          Interesting! I’m pretty sure my data sheet is the original as-built; maybe you got an early design parameter that didn’t pan out. I can say with the lift speed potentiometer turned all the way up we see speed peak at about 1025 and then settle at 1000. Thanks for answering, Peter.


        • ShangRei Garrett January 17, 2023 / 7:27 pm

          AO, I’m sorry, I didn’t realize you worked at Snowmass


        • AO January 17, 2023 / 7:39 pm

          No worries, I really hadn’t been clear about that


  3. Donald Reif December 30, 2019 / 10:21 am

    Snowmass must really pride itself on having ultra-long detachables, as the only one on the mountain that’s shorter than 5,000 feet is Sam’s Knob at 3,970 feet. The second shortest is Coney Glade (5,056), then High Alpine (5,256), Alpine Springs (7,200), Elk Camp (7,605), Big Burn (7,910), Sheer Bliss (9,242), Two Creeks (9,835) and the Village Express (10,074). The only places in Colorado that could rival Snowmass in having a detachable lift fleet made almost entirely of lifts that are at least a mile long are Breck (where the only detachable shorter than a mile in length is Imperial) and Beaver Creek (where the shortest high speed quad is 4,600 feet long).


  4. Donald Reif November 10, 2020 / 12:50 pm

    The Village Express’s missing stats are 34 towers and 169 chairs.


  5. Alex December 27, 2020 / 9:41 pm

    Now that the Big Burn HSS has been installed I wonder what is next for Snowmass. Feels like they will need to replace Coney Glade in next few years – likely with a low capacity HSQ (1200 PPH). Long range plan is to eventually install a very long HSQ on Burnt Mountain. Personally I would like to see them reinstall Naked Lady as a low capacity HSQ to complement Alpine Springs.


    • Donald Reif December 27, 2020 / 10:31 pm

      I wonder if Burnt Mountain getting a HSQ will necessitate a capacity upgrade for Two Creeks.


      • Myles Svec December 28, 2020 / 9:03 am

        What would be the lift line of the Burnt mountain HSQ?


      • pbropetech December 10, 2021 / 11:37 pm

        Maybe, but I kinda doubt it. Two Creeks isn’t a major access point; most folks go through the village via the Elk Camp Gondola.


    • Myles Svec March 13, 2021 / 11:22 am

      Also just wanted to note that before the Burnt mountain HSQ goes in there will be a fixed grip lift called Naked Man that will go from Bull Run to the summit of burnt mountain until the HSQ is installed. It will service the trail pod for the HSQ which will be cut before the HSQ goes in. It will have a vertical rise of 235 feet and a capacity of 1,200. It could either be a surface lift on the same alignment with a vertical rise of 235 feet and a capacity of 500.


    • skitheeast March 13, 2021 / 11:44 am

      I am hoping they replace Campground with a detachable quad going up to Sam’s like the original alignment. However, I do not think there are plans for that.


      • Myles Svec December 11, 2021 / 9:51 am

        Not enough space for a top terminal up there.


  6. Myles Svec March 14, 2021 / 12:39 pm

    By Two Creeks on East Branch there is another platter. It is for real estate use so I’m not sure if Peter would take pictures of it.


  7. oirnoir November 4, 2021 / 1:51 pm

    Hey, I found the missing tower counts just by looking at the existing photos.
    (I had to zoom in really far for the Elk Camp chairlift so that one might be incorrect)

    Cirque – 14
    Coney Glade – 17
    Elk Camp – 25
    Elk Camp Gondola – 33
    High Alpine – 15
    Sky Cab – 7


  8. Bluebirdbluesky March 23, 2022 / 7:15 pm

    Just spent a few days skiing here. Amazing mountain with a really impressive lift fleet! Some impressions:

    – Elk Camp and Alpine Springs could stand capacity upgrades. They seem to be the only lifts that generate lines regularly. Given the varied ability levels utilizing these lifts, and their age, HSS replacements with wider spacing seems appropriate.

    – Coney Glade, though very old, seems redundant and not a replacement priority. Perhaps in an adjusted alignment, but as currently built I found no real reason to use it.

    – High Alpine and Big Burn are a couple of beautiful new LPA machines, really nicely engineered and very comfortable rides. Noticed the new safety bar model removes the rear bar (that lift attendants could use to lower the restraint bar for kids if they wanted to). Anyone know the reasoning behind this evolved model?

    – Any conceivable way to speed up the lift line at Cirque? Between wind exposure and the unique properties of this lift, there may be no reasonable options, but the long and slow moving queue is a real turnoff when there is so much easily accessible terrain elsewhere.

    – 3:30pm closing time at some key lifts including Alpine Springs (often necessary for east-west and west-east late day transit), Sheer Bliss, Sam’s, and High Alpine seems a little aggressive in late March afternoon daylight. Would like to see at least an extra 15 minutes to wrap the day up and get back to base.

    What a great mountain.


    • Donald Reif March 23, 2022 / 8:12 pm

      I wouldn’t consider Coney Glade redundant considering that it laps the terrain park and provides intermediates a way to transit west from Alpine Springs / Big Burn / Sheer Bliss to Sam’s Knob without going down to the Village Express.

      Elk Camp could definitely use more chairs at minimum, although a capacity upgrade wouldn’t be out of the question.


      • Bluebirdbluesky March 24, 2022 / 9:16 am

        I guess I shouldn’t say Coney Glade is 100% redundant, rather my point was that upgrades to Alpine Springs and Elk Camp should be higher priority than replacing Coney Glade. The lower portion of Village Express decently serves the terrain parks and transit needs, even if Coney is a little more convenient.


        • Bluebirdbluesky March 24, 2022 / 9:33 am

          And any conceivable expansions to Burnt Mountain should also be priority.


    • pbropetech March 23, 2022 / 9:28 pm

      I’ll speak directly to your comment about the comfort bar (it does not restrain anything). The current LPA design eliminates the counterweight they used to have in favour of springs that make raising the bar easier. While I did not see any maintenance-related failures of the older design, the new one is definitely more user-friendly and I’ll support it in that regard. It’s not any more difficult for the lifties to lower the bar on kids, I’ve seen them do it (and they usually do so with a flourish as they would have with the older style).

      As for the Cirque- you’ve neatly explained why they can’t speed up the queue. Since I can’t turn off my inner lift mechanic even when skiing other areas, I thought about this the last time I was there and I don’t see anything else they could do.

      I agree that Snowmass is a great mountain. I deal with the three-hour drive from my place (only an hour in the summer, but whatever) to ski there.


    • skitheeast March 24, 2022 / 11:14 am

      I agree that Coney Glade is pretty useless in its existing alignment. I think lowering the bottom terminal downhill to where Banzai and Dawdler intersect to allow that whole lower pod to be lapped is a good idea.

      Donald: Intermediates are not the main demographic at Sam’s Knob, as it is mostly an advanced pod. However, if they want to go over without going all the way down, they can access Lunchline from the top of Sheer Bliss/Big Burn and avoid both the bottom and Coney Glade.


      • awconrad March 24, 2022 / 5:16 pm

        Would replacing both Sam’s Knob and Campground with one lift be feasible? It seems like that area is all one big pod, and if there’s only room for two detachables on top of Sam’s Knob that seems like it would work?

        I haven’t been to Snowmass so idk what makes the most sense, just playing armchair architect


        • vons3 March 24, 2022 / 5:45 pm

          I think this area is split because the low elevation of the campground base area causing snow coverage issues and Sams being a pretty solid pod on its own.

          Liked by 1 person

        • JV617 December 5, 2022 / 1:05 pm

          The mid-station of Village Express is unload only. The current setup takes pressure off the Village Express by allowing skiers to transit from Big Burn to the top of Sam’s Knob (lunchline to the Sam’s Knob lift) or simply lap that terrain without having to ski all the way to the bottom of Village Express.


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