Tamarack – Stratton, VT

This very unique Borvig has a large bottom terminal building.
Very rare ’70s-era towers.
View into the loading area.
Approaching the load zone.
Drive/tension carriage.
Counterweight setup.
View up the lift line.
Looking down line.
Snowflake bullwheel up top.
Unloading area.
View down from the top shack.
Upper lift line.
The last two towers and top terminal.
Looking down at T12.

60 thoughts on “Tamarack – Stratton, VT

  1. somebody January 28, 2019 / 11:43 am

    This lift is getting replaced with a HSQ in the very near future (confirmed by ski patrol). There also was some ambitious proposals for another lift related to Tamarack, way too hard to explain though. Here’s a picture/diagram I made from google earth that shows it pretty well.


    • skitheeast January 28, 2019 / 12:13 pm

      I have also heard this from employees, although this project is summer 2020-2022 timeframe. The South American quad will be removed when this lift is eventually installed, as it will end where South American currently ends.


      • somebody January 28, 2019 / 12:20 pm

        Didn’t heard about that! Any idea where South American will go? Think it will be scrapped?


    • Tijsen November 12, 2019 / 8:12 am

      I think Stratton has started tearing down liftline lodge. I have been seeing recently that there are dumpsters and some equipment out next/front of it, so they might be gutting it at the moment


      • skitheeast November 12, 2019 / 7:35 pm

        I have absolutely no confirmation on this, but I would not be surprised if the lodge is torn down relatively soon even if the new hotel does not go up right away. Management dislikes the property as it is shabbier than the surrounding real estate in a prime location. I am not even sure if it was even available for nightly stays last season or used by the resort at all, and I know it is not available for this upcoming winter.

        The Tamarack lift replacement isn’t very likely for this upcoming summer. The resort is prioritizing the construction of a summit restaurant and an expansion of the mid-mountain lodge, plus mountain biking phases II and III will be completed next summer. The summit restaurant was the project they wanted for this past summer, but they were unhappy with the plans and went back to the drawing board. Apparently, they are still unhappy with the plans and it looks like the mid-mountain expansion may leapfrog it and be their big 2020 project. Personally, I would be surprised if they went back to back lodge expansions in 2020 and 2021 and think it would make more sense to build one lodge in 2020, Tamarack Express in 2021, and then the other in 2022. However, any potential hotel developer is on an independent timeline and the date of its opening could impact the timeline (I’m guessing 2022). The timeline also hinges on how much money is allotted to Stratton from Alterra, who are more than eager to help but want to ensure every project is done right and not simply as cheap or rushed as possible.


        • Collin Parsons November 12, 2019 / 8:43 pm

          Where did you find out all this? I hadn’t even heard about the summit restaurant before, but Stratton definitely needs some kind of building at the summit. It could be important to the Liftline Lodge project because as mentioned, some developers were interested, but wouldn’t sign on unless they showed an increase in summer business. The restaurant could be a great location for events (think weddings, conferences, etc) and that drives hotel stays. However, I’m concerned that’s going to be a permitting nightmare. The mid mountain lodge is super cramped and badly needs to be expanded. The new Tamarack would also let off there which makes it even more important. Also I didn’t think they were accelerating the bike park. I thought it was Phase 2 in 2020 and Phase 3 in 2021.

          Their sister resort Tremblant has multiple chain hotels right at the resort and is building another. Their summer business rivals winter business. Part of this is due to being located right next to a big lake which Stratton will never have. I still see the current development plan for Stratton to be highly influenced by Tremblant’s success.


        • Teddy's Lift World November 13, 2019 / 9:18 am

          I agree, they need a good on mountain dining option. The only way to have a good meal is to go into the village. The only other place is this place called Mountain Smoke which is a cafeteria style restaurant with mediocre food.


        • skitheeast November 13, 2019 / 3:06 pm

          I was talking to some people who work at Alterra/Stratton over the summer and learned this, they are all really excited. As you mentioned, developers for the Liftline Lodge all said the summer business is too low, hence the push for mountain biking, weddings, etc. Ideally, they would completely renovate the golf course to bring it up to PGA standards as well, but they know they could never afford to lose a summer season of golf. Another incentive for increasing summer visitation is the ability for more village shops to be open so Alterra can collect more in rent. Stratton is actually being influenced by Deer Valley and not Tremblant. As you mentioned, Tremblant has a natural advantage in summer visitation and Alterra thinks Stratton has more similarities Deer Valley (excellent grooming/snowmaking, similar clientele, etc.) I know Marriott (who has the St. Regis at Deer Valley) is one of the companies Stratton is looking at as a potential Liftline Lodge partner.

          As someone else mentioned, the summit lodge will have a restaurant (designed for both winter and summer use), restrooms, and have the new ski patrol headquarters. Also, to clarify my bike park comments from earlier, while phases II and III will be opening in 2020 and 2021, respectively, the goal is to have most of the construction for phase III done by the end of next summer so it can open early summer 2021, unlike this summer when phase I didn’t open until Labor Day.

          Fun fact: In its last years under Intrawest, the three primary investments Stratton wanted to make were a new Snow Bowl detachable lift, summer mountain biking, and $1 million in paving across the resort. In its first two years under Alterra, all three investments have been made.


        • Collin Parsons November 16, 2019 / 7:17 pm

          I saw a post on Ski The East group confirming that the demolition of Liftline Lodge is in progress.


      • Sam Altavilla November 13, 2019 / 5:53 am

        I have noticed that as well. Bill Nupp (president of Stratton) discussed plans for the future during our anual patrol seminar last week and this never came up, which surprised me. The only thing he brought up was the fact that Stratton requested Alterra for funds to build a summit lodge with bathrooms, a restaurant and new patrol building.


      • Tijsen November 22, 2019 / 6:42 am

        The lodge has been completely demolished. Now just a giant pile of debris. Ops said lift is likely to go up when hotel goes up so this summer might be it.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Somebody November 22, 2019 / 9:03 am

          Wow, I’m surprised they kept it so on the down low. No big announcement or anything, they just knocked it down.

          Liked by 1 person

        • Tijsen November 22, 2019 / 9:13 am

          I won’t be surprised though if Stratton releases a press release/update about it soon because the crowds driving pass it to get to lot one ant two this week will be asking about it

          Liked by 1 person

  2. Collin Parsons January 28, 2019 / 1:34 pm

    I think this idea is spot-on. It will create an isolated beginner area served by an easy to load detachable lift. As far as the old lifts go, I think Tamarack would be scrapped and South American sold off like Snow Bowl was (maybe reopen Timber Ridge at Magic? Just a thought). I also think relocating Solstice to become an access lift out of Lot 2 would be a good idea.


    • skitheeast January 28, 2019 / 4:12 pm

      Allegedly, Stratton cannot make Lot 2 lift accessed due to an issue with the Treetop development. I’m assuming Tamarack would be scrapped because it’s a ’76 Borvig. South American is more interesting because it is an ’85 Poma, so it has resale value, but it is already in its second location and I am not sure if that has a negative impact on its price. As much as I would love to see Timber Ridge at Magic, I don’t think their management/ownership can take that on at the moment.


      • ne_skier July 30, 2020 / 8:36 pm

        Not only would they not have the money, but the whole concept of Timber Ridge was also flawed. The connecting trails were seldom open due to snow issues, meaning the only reliable solution would be a Slide Brook-type lift, which Magic doesn’t have the money for. It’s positioning on the mountain simply doesn’t work for a connection, it’s strange.


    • reaperskier January 28, 2019 / 6:24 pm

      I think tamarack would make a great beginner lift at magic. All it would need is some partek upgrades and boom!


      • somebody January 28, 2019 / 7:15 pm

        Where though? Green just was completed, so go to the west side? Or Timber ridge?


        • reaperskier January 29, 2019 / 4:41 am

          The west side.


  3. Collin Parsons January 28, 2019 / 6:27 pm

    I don’t see the point of the lift across the road. Why not just move the new Tamarack base closer to the road and build a foot bridge from the parking lot?


    • somebody January 28, 2019 / 7:10 pm

      Tamarack is on flat ground with a hill right behind it. Currently, Crossing the road isn’t the problem, but climbing 30 feet straight up a hill is. Also a bridge would pretty much have to go straight up and be 10-15 feet off the ground. Now imagine everybody from a huge planned hotel (and from the existing large inn) trying to use this bridge at the same time at 9am on a Saturday morning.

      Also, huge marketing. The convenience of being next to a lift is worth hundreds/thousands of dollars for some people. “Walk to the lift”, even if its a minute walk, markets much worse.

      On top of that, remember this is my educated guess on the lift to span the road. For all I know, they could be planning on building a skier bridge, and adding skiing all the way down to the golf course.


    • skitheeast January 29, 2019 / 11:10 am

      Stratton recently acquired the Lift Line Lodge across the street. Ideally, they would knock it down and build a new flagship hotel in partnership with a major hotel chain and most likely have timeshares. The property is worth millions more if it can be branded as ski-in/ski-out, so a skier bridge and lower lift base allows them to do this. Because the Tamarack lift base is currently ~40-50 feet above the height of where the lot/hotel/road is, a green sloped skier bridge can easily be created above the road with less difficulty than if the lift was already at the same elevation as the road. The one wrench in this project is Alterra, as they no interest in developing real estate. However, Stratton’s real estate team is pretty influential and the company seems willing to throw money behind a project if the mountain really believes in it.

      Skiing would not continue all the way down to the golf course. It would simply end at the base of the lift across the road.


      • Collin Parsons January 29, 2019 / 11:30 am

        I think sending everyone over a skier bridge is impractical as there are several runs off Tamarack that would merge into one to go over the road. One option is to have a mid station where the lift starts now which is similar to what Beaver Creek has on Elkhorn. It would be expensive to do on a detachable, but surely less expensive than building two separate lifts and easier to staff.


        • skitheeast January 29, 2019 / 1:26 pm

          I think you are overestimating the traffic on this lift. A ~100 foot wide skier bridge should be sufficient. It is currently only beginners who are at a stage in between the Magic Carpet learning center area and blue trails. With a D4C, traffic would increase slightly, but this would mostly be in skiers heading up the mountain in the morning, not anyone lapping this lift. A mid station would make absolutely no sense because it is expensive (as you mentioned) and it really only saves a maximum 500 feet of skiing.

          I understand the width/merge concerns, but it should not be an issue. When mountains study widths of trails, they take into account skier density. The mellower a slope, the higher skier density it can have because there is a lower maximum speed one can possibly go, so everyone can be more compact moving at a relatively similar pace. Since the bridge would start from a light green sloped area and continue to have a similar slope, a width of ~100 feet should not be an issue. If we assume the bridge has a demand of 2400 skiers/hour to match the lift’s capacity, that would be 40 skiers/min or 4 skiers across (25 feet width per skier) every 10 seconds (spacing between skiers). That should be sufficient.


        • Collin Parsons January 29, 2019 / 2:09 pm

          Belleayre Mountain has a skier bridge to allow people to lap their gondola. Its a lot narrower than 100 feet and the lift capacity is 2000. It definitely gets crowded on weekends and skied off fast. I’m not sure a 100 foot wide bridge is practical either. A standard lane of traffic is 12 feet. Picture and 8 lane wide bridge.

          A Tamarack high speed quad would most likely not run at full speed because there would be a lot of beginners, so the capacity (and skier density) would be lower.


        • skitheeast January 30, 2019 / 5:48 pm

          I don’t think Belleayre is a good comparison because their gondola is the primary out of a base area while this would be a lift serving primarily beginners and skiers heading up the mountain in the morning. Yes, it’s 2000 capacity is lower than the assumed 2400 of a D4C, but that doesn’t mean the demand for the lift is proportional. Also, Belleayre’s snowmaking/grooming team is not nearly as dependable as Stratton’s, so there should be a deeper base (although yes, it will most likely inevitably be skied off similarly to Black Bear or the URSA base). Again, because this lift would really only be lapped by beginners and this won’t even be from the main base area, it should be fine.

          Regarding bridge width, given Stratton’s two existing skier bridges for Lower Tamarack and Craig’s Run are each about 80-90 feet wide, I do not think 100 feet is absurd especially given that there is enough space.


        • Collin Parsons January 30, 2019 / 6:07 pm

          I think having the road tunnel under where it is now and the ski trail following the existing grade would be a better option than trying to build a bridge over it for the trail. Then the width can be wider and whenever you build a skier bridge you get a massive drop off on the other side since it pretty much has to be level. Then the trail could be 100-150 feet wide. As part of this the access to Lot 1 would need to be moved to the other side closer to the Sun Bowl.


        • skitheeast January 30, 2019 / 6:25 pm

          Because Tamarack’s existing base is already 40-50 feet above the road/lot/hotel, it should be able to be mildly sloped across and go over the road without needed to tunnel. I would look at the the bridge for Lupin at Mammoth or Village Run at Northstar as examples of ski bridges that are mildly sloped all the way across and go over a road. Even the existing two skier bridges at Stratton are mildly sloped all the way across.


        • Sam Altavilla September 11, 2019 / 10:17 am

          Having a lift that runs down into the hotel/parking lot can also cut shuttle bus costs, since guests can ride directly to the mid-station from the parking lot. The only lot that would still need shuttle service would be the second lot which is a ways away from the base.


      • Tijsen September 10, 2019 / 12:18 pm

        Mountain ops says that they are thinking of having two stages for tamarack express, stage one built into, in front, or next to the new lifeline lodge, mid station at current tamarack start, and the top being slightly higher than current top.


        • Collin Parsons September 10, 2019 / 2:48 pm

          I think an angle station would be too expensive for that lift. A half mid station would work well. Then the top would probably be adjacent to the mid mountain lodge which the current lift does not access. The question is if they do a skier bridge across the road, or do a full mid station and allow people to download across the road.


        • skitheeast September 10, 2019 / 3:13 pm

          I have been hearing the same thing this summer, which is a change of pace from their previous idea of making one continuous lift from the Liftline Lodge all the way up. After the massive success of lowering URSA’s lift lines with the new Snow Bowl lift while simultaneously setting a record for skier days, there is a surge for projects aimed at improving skier flow across the mountain. They now want to expedite this project and complete it within the next 2 years (either summer 2020/21) but have no set timeline for the Liftline Lodge replacement (which is dependent on summer visitation) that the lift would serve. So, the new plan is to later extend the lift and add a skier bridge once the new hotel opens. The original plan was also to have the new top be where the current South American top is so it could access Mid-Mountain Lodge (which is slated to be renovated in either 2020 or 2021) and URSA, but they are now looking to see if they can squeeze the lift in somewhere else (so South American could remain in place) while preserving Mid-Mountain and URSA access.


        • reaperskier September 10, 2019 / 3:46 pm

          So is a kidderbrook express in the plans for stratton?


        • Collin Parsons September 10, 2019 / 5:01 pm

          This is very good info Skitheeast. May I ask what your source is?


        • Tijsen September 10, 2019 / 7:21 pm

          The problem with the half angle is how will the other side angle? Craig (vp mountain ops) also said that is is expensive, however will make flow easier, as people coming from lodge won’t have to go onto another lift. Also no plans for a bridge. Two way loading between mid terminus and lower.

          Liked by 1 person

        • Tijsen September 10, 2019 / 7:22 pm

          No kidderbrook express in five year masterplan.


        • skitheeast September 10, 2019 / 8:04 pm

          @reaperskier I have heard nothing about Kidderbrook Express (as much as I would appreciate the chair). Personally, I would be surprised to see another lift at Kidderbrook with Shooting Star in existence without a significant terrain expansion. @Collin Parsons I am friends with a few Alterra/Stratton employees and everyone has been very excited to talk about the changes under Alterra ownership. However, as a general rule, most ski resort employees with the knowledge will happily share what their future expansion plans are because A) many have to publish them for the public/US government anyway and B) they have to entice visitors to return, regulars to buy real estate, and homeowners to remain happy with promises of new terrain, lifts, lodges, etc.

          Liked by 1 person

        • Collin Parsons September 10, 2019 / 8:35 pm

          This makes the project seem much more likely, now that there’s some confirmed info instead of just speculation. It will be interesting to see what kind of solution they end up using for a road crossing. So many different options. The full mid station with two way loading would be similar to Sweetwater at Jackson Hole, but it’s never been done on a chair before in North America. They would need to have very good signage of which side of the lift to go to in order to ride up or down. Also not sure of the staffing requirements for such a complex station. The phasing of the project would likely mean the lift would be top drive since it’s easier to relocate a return terminal to extend the lift rather than a drive terminal.


        • Peter Landsman September 10, 2019 / 8:42 pm

          Sounds more like Eglise at Yellowstone Club than Sweetwater. After skiing on Eglise Rock, guests must re-board the gondola at the mid-station downbound to return to the village.

          We staff three operators at the mid-station of Sweetwater at any given time.


        • xlr8r September 10, 2019 / 10:50 pm

          If the new tamarack is going to be a chair (which it should be) not a gondola, what is the point of extending it across the street without a bridge to ski down to the base. I would think it would be better to just build Tamarack as a HSQ starting in its current location, and then eventually building a short cabriolet gondola from Liftline Lodge/parking lot to the bottom of Tamarack. As for the location of the new Tamarack top terminal, the current location of where South American terminates would be ideal. IMO South American should have originally been built to end on the other side of the Mid Mountain lodge at the top of Suntanner anyway. In its current alignment it would not make sense to extend Tamarack as it would create a lot of cross traffic on the intersection of trails just above the Mid Mountain lodge. I think the current Tamarack did use to go further up the mountain a few hundred feet and was shortened years ago to resolve this issue, though I might be wrong.


        • Tijsen September 11, 2019 / 5:58 am

          The problem with the bridge is that the hotel will be taking up a large area of the current liftline lodge lot, so there isn’t any room for the bridge to stop and no room for people to slow down. Another problem is the height. Bridge would need to have a steep decline once its over the road in order for trucks, buses, and other large vehicles to fit under it (12+ foot clearance?)


        • Collin Parsons September 11, 2019 / 9:10 am

          I believe the existing lift was completely realigned in 2001. It used to extend higher to facilitate a transfer to the North American Double (and later quad). When URSA replaced both North American and Grizzly in 1999, there was no need for a transfer, so a couple years later the lift was shortened and realigned. I guess they did the realignment because the current top terminal location is better than if it were on the original route, and they couldn’t put the top where they wanted by simply shortening the original route.

          As for South American, it might have made more sense to run it up the Suntanner slope, but it is where it is now, and that’s not changing. I think they built it there since it was a replacement for the Tyrolienne Double and wanted it to start closer to where the former lift did. I think it’s definitely possible to keep it and have the new Tamarack also end at the mid mountain lodge. Likely would go slightly higher than South American and be a side unload like the Bluebird Express at Mount Snow, but facing the opposite direction. I don’t think South American should be removed because of the need for redundancy at the main base. If the gondola and/or AMEX goes down it’s already a major problem, and would be even more so without South American providing backup capacity.

          As for the merits of a mid station vs. a separate transfer lift, the mid station would allow a one seat ride from the proposed hotel to the mid mountain lodge. That would be faster and easier for hotel guests, possibly increasing the nightly rates they can charge. The separate transfer lift might be easier to operate since they wouldn’t need to send up empty chairs from the bottom. Regardless, there would be no skier bridge. If it is one lift with a mid station, you would be able to download from the mid station to get back to the parking lot and hotel. I could see that going either way at this point, even though it appears they are leaning towards the one lift plan. It seems clear the skier bridge idea is out. Not sure why there was so much talk of it in the first place.

          The case for doing a project like this is obvious. There are severe lines for the gondola and AMEX on busy days, and making the connection across the road would take some pressure off the main base. There is also a clear business case for it as making the proposed hotel effectively slopeside would increase the value of the property by millions, possibly more than it would cost to build the connection itself. And even if it doesn’t, the higher prices they could charge for being slopeside would eventually make up for it.

          Liked by 1 person

        • Tijsen September 11, 2019 / 10:47 am

          It will make the new lodge similar to the big lodge at Stowe (the one with the gondola going into it) which I know Stowe makes quite the money from it. Speaking of the crazy Amex lines, I wonder what Stratton will try to do next to fix the insane 30-45 min lines at ursa. The snowbowl has helped, however it has only improved it by 10-15 min. And I bet it will get worse soon once the new tamarack is built, because coming from top of tamarack there is no way to ski over to snowbowl.


        • Tijsen September 12, 2019 / 10:54 am

          Nice! I didn’t realize that if you would align the lift that way it would go on duck soup, so not much clearing needed. However it think there is a chance that the top terminal will be where top terminal is currently, so the beginners using the lift won’t have to use grizzly access, which is always crazy, to access the green area that tamarack currently serves. I wonder with that bottom terminus If they will add a snow maker or two so they can make snow next to the parking lot, so people can access the lift with skis so they can continue all the way up.


        • Connor Duncan November 12, 2019 / 6:21 pm

          Yep. In fact, Duck Soup used to be the liftline for a T-bar wayyyy back in Stratton’s history, so this makes sense. Probably would need to be widened significantly however.


  4. Somebody May 14, 2020 / 12:59 pm

    I believe Collin is correct that this lift was shortened and re-aligned.

    The yellow line shows what I believe was the old liftline.

    And for context, 1999 trail map:

    2005 trail map:

    Why they’d modify a 25 year old Borvig (the oldest public lift on the mountain) beats me but they did appear to do it.

    They also replaced the Borvig wooden backrests with Partek plastic backrests, however that appears to have been after the re-alignment:


    • LowerLiftline November 2, 2020 / 8:15 am

      This lift was just shortened, not realigned, soon after URSA was built. It used to go over what’s now “Ursa Access” and offload right above that trail. The offloading of this lift paired with the hoards of people skiing to URSA caused for a crazy intersection so shortening it helped the two sources of traffic flow a whole lot better. Wasn’t an issue prior when the majority of skiers would take the North American quad to the top and only a small trickle of people would use that trail to get over to the Grizzly Double.


    • mdslater100 September 20, 2020 / 9:37 pm

      Very interesting. Considering that there were plans pre-COVID to remove this lift, I wonder why they invested in new chairs…Does anyone have photos?


      • Collin Parsons September 20, 2020 / 10:45 pm

        The lift replacement project was to have been intertwined with a hotel project. With that being cancelled, the lift replacement doesn’t make much sense anymore. But just because a lift gets new chairs doesn’t mean it won’t be replaced at some point.


        • skitheeast September 21, 2020 / 5:58 am

          The hotel project is not canceled, and likely just delayed. Everyone I know at Stratton/Alterra still say this lift will be replaced within the next couple of years. However, as we saw with Snow Bowl, sometimes it takes five or so years after they commit to replacing a lift before it is actually replaced.


      • Tijsen November 10, 2020 / 9:36 am

        I think some of the chairs didn’t pass the inspection this spring, so Stratton went ahead and replaced the chairs and upgraded some equipment while they were at it since the project to replace the lift entirely was delayed by covid. I believe they are aiming to replace the lift sometime around 2024 or 2025 now, after summit restaurant, mid mountain lodge upgrades, and phases 2 and 3 of mountain biking.


        • Sam Altavilla November 10, 2020 / 10:12 am

          Considering phase 2 of the biking park was supposed to happen this summer, i’m guessing they are prioritizing that for next summer. The summit lodge trumps necessity over a mid mountain expansion. For all you and I know, a mid mountain expansion might not even be needed if the summit facility goes off without a hitch. I would be surprised to see Stratton front-load the mid mountain project, but I don’t write the paychecks so I could be horribly wrong.

          In terms of the Tamarack replacement, I agree with your point that it is no longer that prioritized, especially considering there is a new control system and motor. From my research I can 90 percent guarantee that the chairs had failed NDT, I recalled some being flagged the prior summer whist I was hiking around there. Besides, Tamarack 2.0 wont make its debut until the new hotel, which itself wont occur until they find another place for the current employee housing space. It really is a chain of events, and I think that there are very little variations possible to the order in which things happen. The way I see it right now (and no this isn’t from a management standpoint) is as follows:

          -Mountain bike park phases 2 and 3
          -Summit facility (patrol building, restaurant, etc)
          -Mid mountain expansion (if needed)
          -New hotel and lot 2
          -Tamarack the sequel

          I don’t know, but that’s just what I see in the future. Tijsen I know you have more of an insider scoop than most, maybe you can fill me in with how wrong this is haha.


        • skitheeast November 10, 2020 / 1:24 pm

          From the latest I heard, mid-mountain may happen before the summit lodge because they want the summit lodge to be an iconic, year-round facility. I know there are slightly differing visions from within the company, but Snowbird and Killington’s respective summit lodges have been used as models. Given that, they went back to the drawing board last year and are working on a new design for the summit, while mid-mountain has plans ready to go. Since increasing dining capacity is a pressing issue, they will likely green-light mid-mountain’s plans in the next 1-2 years with the summit lodge then occurring a couple of years later (assuming no big financial/pandemic altercations).

          Tamarack 2.0 is tied up in the hotel development. As I have mentioned before, the major hotel chains they want to partner with are seeking higher occupancy rates and nightly prices for the summer season to offset the losses that will occur during the shoulder seasons. Phase 1 of mountain biking was successful in starting to drive summertime demand, and they are hoping phases 2 and 3 will be online in the next 2 years to continue that trend. The summit lodge is partially tied up in all of this too, as they see the potential for additional weddings during the summer up there, and weddings are a large source of summertime bookings. Different hotel developers also have differing visions of Tamarack 2.0, with the more upscale ones wanting a skier bridge across the road to the existing Lot 1 coupled with an extended liftline down and the less lavish ones okay with keeping the same bottom terminal paired with a pedestrian bridge over the road. Stratton would prefer to have a more upscale partner, as they are striving to become the Deer Valley of the east, but we will see what ends up happening.

          This all means that there are basically two parallel timelines, not a single combined one. Alterra has committed to investing in capital projects as they are needed, not simply going down a list and checking one item off every summer, so one year could see multiple projects going on with another seeing practically none.


  5. Sam Altavilla November 1, 2020 / 2:40 pm

    This lift got a brand new top shack over the summer as well, courtesy of Timberwolf Hardwoods, the same contractors that did the Snow Bowl lift shacks.


  6. skitheeast December 27, 2020 / 8:28 pm

    This lift’s replacement was likely delayed by a year or two due to COVID-19. As I had mentioned earlier, it is all tied up in getting one of the major hotel chains to develop a new property at the existing Liftline Lodge/Lot 1, but they need an increase in summer business. Apparently, Stratton/Alterra met with at least two of the major chains (Marriott, Hyatt, Hilton, Wyndham, IHG, etc.) and they said nothing will happen before mountain biking phase three is completed, which is currently slated for Summer 2022. Additionally, the pandemic has further emphasized the pressure on food and beverage, and they would like to expedite the timelines for all of those plans. The summit lodge, which they are really pushing, is causing problems because it will take four years from a final commitment to opening (two for permitting in Vermont for structures above ~2500 feet and two more for construction due to the Bicknell’s thrush nesting season), so they are likely going to renovate/expand Sun Bowl lodge before Tamarack is open as well. With that in mind, the list of projects likely to be completed before Tamarack 2.0 has grown to Mid-Mountain expansion/renovation (2021/22?), Summit Lodge (2025?), Sun Bowl lodge (2023/24?), and mountain biking phases two and three (2021/22).


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