- Jay Peak and Garaventa begin major tram overhaul.
- More positive press for Powder Seeker at Big Sky.
- There’s a new gondola idea for Mt. Benson in Nanaimo on Vancouver Island, BC.
- Sky Lift update points to late-April reopening.
- Austin Wire won’t move forward.
- Stratton might replace the Snow Bowl quad.
- Critics file complaint against Belleayre expansion and gondola.
- Ski Blandford faces worsening financial situation with three aging Hall doubles.
- Squirrel kills power to three lifts at Eaglecrest.
- Unofficial Networks profiles outrageous gondolas.
- British Columbia approves Valemount Glacier with opening targeted for Christmas 2018.
- Town of Breckenridge study concludes gondola could cost $800-1000 an hour to operate with stations costing $2 million to build.
- Cabin to tour Staten Island in hopes of drumming up support for gondola.
- Bridger Bowl celebrates the end of an era with a center pole chair photo contest.
- Mt. Spokane expansion and new chairlift approved yet again.
- LST Ropeways’ first detachable opens in La Plagne.
- Fourteen years since construction started, Magic Mountain may finally finish Green lift.
News Roundup: Vacation
Hello readers- for the next two weeks I am floating the Grand Canyon without access to the internet. I’ve scheduled a few posts for my absence, otherwise lift blogging will resume Nov. 5th –Peter from Flagstaff, Arizona.
- Ski season launches tomorrow at A-Basin. COO Al Henceroth is also looking for one of the resort’s original single chairs.
- Silver Mountain reportedly sells for a fire-sale price of $5 million. The resort’s gondola, formerly the world’s longest, cost $8 million in 1990.
- Doppelmayr goes to Moscow, Poma goes to Barcelona and Orlando.
- Wire Austin gets a website.
- Take a ride on the newly-named Hexago six-pack at Le Relais.
- In case you missed it, Gregg Blanchard of SlopeFillers fame interviewed me about Lift Blog.
- Woman sues Aspen Skiing Company over loading incident at the Snowmass Village Express.
- Vail Resorts to debut $100 million in capital improvements for 2016-17 including four new lifts. With Whistler-Blackcomb now Epic, the company will likely invest even more in 2017.
- 9News profiles the CPTSB.
News Roundup: Six-Pack
- Granite Peak will announce a plan this fall for new runs and multiple new lifts.
- Crystal Mountain pushes back Kelly’s Gap high speed quad to 2021.
- James Coleman purchases Hesperus, adding to his collective that includes Arizona Snowbowl, Pajarito, Purgatory and Sipapu. A 1961 Riblet double from Mt. Bachelor is Hesperus’ only lift.
- Fatzer opens a new production plant.
- The United States overtakes France as the world’s most popular ski destination. The U.S. is the fourth largest lift market.
- Austin’s NPR station dedicates more than seven minutes to a discussion about urban cable. “Once we went to La Paz, we were up and running within 12 months,” Doppelmayr’s Randy Woolwine tells listeners.
- A six-pack rises at Arizona Snowbowl.
- Eagle Point unveils Vision 2020 with new lifts and expanded terrain planned.
- Next season might be the last for Blackcomb’s Horstman T-Bar due to glacial recession. This video demonstrates one of the pitfalls of the sinking T-Bar.
- SAM reports how Jay Peak employees have made the most of a bad situation amidst a federal fraud investigation.
- Mont Bellevue gets a Doppelmayr Eco quad with a return station design we haven’t seen before and two different-style bullwheels.
- Le Relais’ $5 million six-place chair is just about finished.
- Vail Resorts loses $65.3 million in the fourth quarter.
- Big Sky’s new six-pack will be named Powder Seeker.
- The first Poma EEZII-model compact detachable terminal is assembled in France.
- Whistler-Blackcomb releases Conflicted Obsessions documentary about climate change. “The gorilla in the room is the long-distance travel required to get to these special places,” admits W-B’s environmental resource manager.
News Roundup: Losses
- Wire Austin gets some attention from folks who matter – the Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority.
- Peak Resorts loses $7.9 million in the first quarter (it owns Alpine Valley, Attitash, Big Boulder, Boston Mills, Brandywine, Crotched Mountain, Hidden Valley, Hunter Mountain, Jack Frost, Mad River Mountain, Mt. Snow, Paoli Peaks, Snow Creek and Wildcat.)
- The deropement and evacuation of the pulse gondola between the Aiguille du Midi and Pointe Helbronner makes CNN.
- Austria’s Foreign Minister meets with former London Mayor Boris Johnson to talk Brexit. The mayor says the Doppelmayr cowbell that came with the Emirates Air Line is one of his most prized possessions.
- Federal receiver hopes to sell Jay Peak in the spring, says resort President Bill Stenger was duped.
- Laurel Mountain’s new Skytrac is complete.
- Maine’s Attorney General sues the owner of Big Squaw Mountain for not operating the ski area as promised.
- Tamarack Homeowners meet to discuss the future of Idaho’s newest ski resort ahead of an October lift auction. Owner Credit Suisse and its operator Replay Resorts appear to be on the way out.
- The owner of Montana Snowbowl tells the Missoulian he started construction on a new TV Mountain lift a few weeks ago and there’s a chance it will be completed in time for the coming winter season.
- Preservation group calls abandoned mines in American Fork Canyon a “ticking time bomb,” calls on Snowbird to turn private land over to the Forest Service where the resort plans to build two new lifts.
Talking Wire Austin with Designer Jared Ficklin
Jared Ficklin and Michael McDaniel are co-creators of The Wire, a brand and concept for urban gondolas in what Forbes calls America’s next big boom town. Designers by trade, they began speaking about their vision to tech conferences and business groups in 2012, leading to a TED Talk in early 2013. If the lifts in Zillertal, Austria can move up to seven million people a day, they asked, why haven’t gondolas entered the transportation picture in our densest landscapes? The presentation was enthusiastically received and Jared gave it a second time at TEDx Kansas City in 2013 to a crowd of more than 4,000. Three years later, Jared and the team at argodesign are at work on a plan for Austin’s first line, Wire One. This week, Jared graciously answered my questions about the project and what comes next.
News Roundup: Villages
- Designer Jared Ficklin talks about his dream for urban cable in Austin.
- More details surface regarding Aspen Mountain’s replacement 1A lift.
- The Yellowstone Club unveils plans for The Village, anchored by a new Eglise Gondola and high speed quad.
- Vail Resorts’ Canyons Village Master Plan includes a strategic new Sunrise lift providing access to the Quicksilver Gondola.
- Peak Resorts lost $3.2 million last year and will not make any major capital investments at its 14 mountains in 2017.
- Another Yan detachable has found its way to Iran.
- Doppelmayr may build another urban gondola project in The Philippines, this one in the southern city of Davao.
- Caberfae Peaks is nearly finished building its new chairlift.
- Sunday River’s insurance company indicates a failure of the grout that secured the top terminal to bedrock caused last week’s failure.