News Roundup: Planning Ahead

Mt. Rose Announces Lakeview Express Project

Mt. Rose Ski Tahoe has decided to replace the Lakeview triple with a modern detachable. The lift will bolster out of base capacity currently provided mostly by the Northwest Magnum 6. “Beloved by many, the 41 year old Lakeview lift saw much greater ridership this past season, and proved the need for increased lift capacity to intermediate and even novice terrain,” read an announcement to season passholders. “Estimated to be the largest capital improvement project in the history of Mt. Rose, this express lift will be a key part in an overall Lakeview Experience involving trail additions, enhancements, and overall skier traffic benefits in the greater plan of this mountain zone.”

The new lift will be constructed in the summer of 2022 and open at the start of the 2022/23 season. The manufacturer and chair size were not announced. Mt. Rose also has approval to add a two stage chairlift in the Atoma expansion zone, which would become the mountain’s fourth detachable.

Mt. Rose Gains Expansion Approval

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New terrain at Mt. Rose, Nevada could be accompanied by a rare two-stage detachable chairlift under a plan signed last week.  Known as Atoma, the expansion would feature 112 acres of beginner terrain across the Mt. Rose Highway from the existing Wizard quad.  The project would include eleven developed ski trails, a skier bridge and new snowmaking.  A dual purpose detachable chairlift would provide both egress from the new terrain and a connection back to the top of Wizard.  Skiers and riders seeking to lap the new trails would unload at an angle station near the highway while others would remain on board.  Capacity of the lift would be 2,000 skiers per hour, providing a low-density beginner experience away from more advanced terrain.  The plan does not specify a chair size, though Mt. Rose’s two existing detachables both feature six place chairs.

Chairlifts with angle stations are quite rare in the United States, in part due to their high cost.  Garaventa CTEC built the first such lift on Vail’s Golden Peak in 1996.  Nearby Breckenridge debuted the Peak 8 SuperConnect in 2002, allowing mid-line loading.  Utah’s Alta Ski Area completed America’s first chairlift angle station with two separate drive systems in 2004 (Alta once planned to build a second such lift but opted instead for a gradual line turn with no loading or unloading.)  Steamboat’s Christie Peak Express followed in 2007 with unloading for beginners at an angled mid-station.  After a 12 year gap, Alpine Meadows and Leitner-Poma completed the Treeline Cirque quad in 2019 featuring an angle station at a cost of $10 million.  If the angle concept ends up proving too expensive for Mt. Rose, the Forest Service authorized installation of one 3,000 foot beginner lift and a separate 1,650 foot connector chair as an alternative.

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Mt. Rose has not released a timeline for construction or identified its lift manufacturer partner yet.

News Roundup: Super Cool

 

News Roundup: Back to Work

 

News Roundup: Eruption

  • Move over Epic Pass, Alterra is launching the Ikon Pass.
  • Granby Ranch is officially listed for sale.
  • Aspen CEO Mike Kaplan says snow challenges bring out the best in people.
  • Think your area is busy on a Saturday?  The urban gondola network in La Paz sets a new one day record: 278,621 riders!
  • New York Governor calls previously announced state fair gondola “an exciting idea” but withholds funding for now.
  • More stories surface of the Hermitage Club owing people money.
  • Skier records volcano erupting from a Doppelmayr detachable in Japan. One person was killed and a gondola damaged by rockfall.
  • ORDA, the state owner of Belleayre, Gore Mountain and Whiteface, lost $20.8  million last year.
  • Powder catches up with Alterra President and COO David Perry, who stresses the company will do things differently than Vail.
  • Public comment period opens for Mt. Rose’s Atoma expansion, which would include construction of one or two new chairlifts as early as 2019.
  • The draft environmental impact statement is also out for Steamboat’s expansion, to include a second gondola, Rough Rider chairlift, new Bashor lift and Pioneer Ridge pod with groundbreaking possible by May.
  • Lake Louise and Nakiska are probable venues for a possible 2026 Calgary Olympics. Denver, Reno-Tahoe and Salt Lake also weigh bids.
  • Just upgrading electric infrastructure for Disney’s Skyliner gondola system will cost $3.8 million, around the total price tag of a typical ski lift project!
  • For the first time since I started keeping track, 2018 new lifts are pacing behind 2017.

News Roundup: Penkenbahn

  • After several high-profile incidents, a good reminder from the NSAA that 86 percent of falls from chairlifts can be attributed to rider error.
  • Lots of questions surround last week’s skier-pushes-snowboarder-off-lift story from Aspen Highlands.  Police say even without an arrest made, the public is not in any danger.
  • Bravo to Bristol Mountain for actually pressing charges against a freeloading teen for theft of services.
  • Only at a tiny mountain in Maine would volunteer ski patrollers derail a double chair they are also responsible for inspecting.
  • An Austrian man is in a coma after the harness he was wearing around his neck became entangled with a platter lift carrier.  At least one lift operator may not have been at his or her assigned post.
  • Mt. Rose Ski Tahoe is for sale.
  • Fun Spot America near Orlando looks to add a gondola ride (thanks Jay T. for the tip.)
  • Dignitaries break ground at Laurel Mountain in preparation for a November re-opening.
  • A mix of public and private groups including Georgetown University are about to spend $250k to study a gondola linking Rosslyn, Virginia with Georgetown (one of Washington, D.C.’s highest-profile neighborhoods without a metro station.)
  • The Balsams Wilderness won’t re-open in 2016 after all.  A revised timeline has three new and two existing lifts spinning in late 2017.
  • This is our 200th post!

Instagram Tuesday: Climbing

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Instagram Tuesday: Still Building

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News Roundup: Eco-Friendly