Whistler Blackcomb, BC

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131 thoughts on “Whistler Blackcomb, BC

  1. Andrew November 6, 2017 / 3:29 pm

    Think about this, every lift that has run in the spot where Creekside gondola operates has been removed due to a mechanical malfunction. The original gondola suffered a fatal grip failure, and was removed. Then, Yan made Quicksilver, which also had issues regarding the grip. Now, Creekside Gondola has TB-41s, which have fallen off of the line in the past, like when that chair fell off of the old Harmony Express. Funny coincidence.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Rob November 8, 2017 / 7:17 am

      The chair that came off the line at Harmony had nothing to do with the grip. It was a broken assembly bolt.

      Liked by 3 people

      • Andrew November 8, 2017 / 12:15 pm

        Didn’t know that. I think those grips have had issues in the past though on other lifts, Don’t remember the exact lifts, but I recall a few lifts that had issues regarding the grip.

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        • John January 2, 2019 / 8:52 am

          TB grips have been pretty reliable, from my experience. What sort of issues do you know of?

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        • Max Hart January 2, 2019 / 5:57 pm

          If I recall correctly, a chair fell off Timberline’s Magic Mile Quad a few years ago. It’s a 1992 Poma 1st gen. Challenger with TB-41s and Competition chairs. That’s the only incident I can think of.

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  2. Snocat1947 November 8, 2017 / 9:22 pm

    That’s a pretty nebulous statement. You may be referring to an incident at Mt. Hood where a chair fell from a maintenance oversight…not a grip issue.
    Not a TB-41 issue.

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    • Andrew November 9, 2017 / 4:50 pm

      Fair enough. I was under the impression that the TB-41s had had issues in the past with the grip itself, but it sounds like these was due to other conditions. Thanks for notifying me of that.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Ben March 9, 2018 / 7:49 am

    Does anyone have pics of the black chair or the original Yan high speeds?

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      • Collin March 9, 2018 / 11:56 am

        I don’t think Peter repurposes pictures from other sites for the database.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Misha Flynn March 9, 2018 / 2:23 pm

        Well I would still appreciate it if he posted links to them.

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      • Ben March 10, 2018 / 4:36 pm

        It says I can’t access the photos

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  4. Ben March 10, 2018 / 4:36 pm

    It says I can’t access the photos

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    • Ryan Murphy March 10, 2018 / 6:40 pm

      I’m pretty sure it restricts photos if you don’t have an account. Just make one, it’s free.

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  5. Max Hart March 10, 2018 / 6:08 pm

    Here’s a good shot of Killington’s Superstar Quad (1987 Yan CLD4):

    and the upper lift line of Superstar:

    I love how they say “state of the art detachable quads” when in reality they were death traps that had to be rebuilt after only a few years of service.

    There are a few more good shots of Superstar at 8:15 and 8:48 here as well:

    Here’s a good one of Greyhawk at Sun Valley. There are clips of Challenger as well starting at 4:18 and ending at 7:03:

    There’s a good page of some of Yan’s fixed grip designs as well on Skilifts.org:
    http://www.skilifts.org/forum/index.php?showtopic=10947&hl=&fromsearch=1

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Ben March 22, 2018 / 9:26 am

    Is there some where I can find the meaning of uni g unigs unigm uni unigxxl and so on?

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    • Peter Landsman March 22, 2018 / 9:35 am

      UNIG is Doppelmayr’s standard detachable terminal worldwide. Uni meaning one and G for global. It comes in many different lengths and two different widths. According to Alpinforum:
      • UNIG S: 21 windows
      • UNIG M: 25 windows
      • UNIG L 31 windows
      • UNIG XL: 33 windows
      • UNIG XXL: 35 windows
      • UNIG XXXL: 37 windows

      Liked by 2 people

      • alexmlee1994 January 31, 2021 / 11:42 pm

        Peter, love Doppelmayr, but IMHO I think I love the Spacejet style terminals, as it gives more a modern space age look. I think in the future, with Doppelmayr upgrades for Detachable lifts, I think they should use the D-Line equipment and technology but incorporate into a newly designed X Large spacejet terminal, with the smaller spacejet terminals delegated to high speed quads. The HSQs should have the exposed bullwheels at both terminals.

        Additionally, ALL Detachable lift terminals should incorporate solar panels on their roof and the capability of wind power when the sun is out(assuming lift mechanics can clear the snow off before the start of the day.). That way they dont have to solely rely on pure electricity.

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        • Utah Lost Ski Area Project October 19, 2021 / 8:47 am

          Alex, Doppelmayr offers solar panels on gondola cabins (the gondolas at La Paz), but this idea of yours sounds like a matienence nightmare. “assuming lift mechanics can clear the snow off before the start of the day.” Remember, that means for more staff and more cost for not much of a return. It’s not like Vail isn’t caring about the environment. I believe they are trying to eliminate plastic by 2030 (Don’t quote me on this). The D-line is designed for a completely different grip than the Uni-Spacejet and is designed for larger lifts. The exposed bullwheel doesn’t make sense either. Sure, these designs look good, but at the end of the day, it comes down to “if it makes them money.” In terms of outer aesthetics, that is not why people ride lifts. It’s about the terrain it serves, its reliability, and the location of the lift.

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        • Donald Reif October 19, 2021 / 9:38 am

          Aesthetics do mean something, but not as much as you think they do. Like, the resorts (Okemo, Copper, Breck, etc.) that have gone with wood siding on the terminals for their LPA detachables for that European vibe.

          Liked by 1 person

        • pbropetech October 19, 2021 / 2:58 pm

          Alex, the enclosed bullwheels make maintenance so much easier. No more precarious ladders or scaffolding to clean, inspect, and lube- not to mention brake service at the drive terminals is much more comfortable. You may like the look of an exposed bullwheel but it’s not maintenance-friendly.

          Also, ‘assuming lift mechanics can clear off the snow before the start of the day’? We have enough going on without incorporating that into our startup routine. We clear snow off terminals as time allows, but that’s later in the day or in the evening after everyone’s off the hill.

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      • Bob October 20, 2022 / 2:31 pm

        Have there been any UNIG XXXLs installed in the US? If not, are there some in Europe?

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        • Aussierob06 October 20, 2022 / 2:45 pm

          Blackcomb Gondola has XXXL’s at top and bottom., despite my earlier comment to the contrary.

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  7. Ben March 23, 2018 / 8:47 am

    Where can I find pictures and discriptions of the different dopplmeyer terminals.

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  8. Ben March 24, 2018 / 9:08 pm

    Will the terminals on the new blackcomb gondola be unig vision?

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    • Cooper April 2, 2018 / 4:10 pm

      I dont think so. It will be a ordinary unig XXL terminal I think. Uni G visions are quite rare in North america and I think aspen has one.

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      • Peter Landsman April 2, 2018 / 4:13 pm

        Huh? Aspen Skiing Co. doesn’t operate any Doppelmayr lifts.

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      • Cooper April 2, 2018 / 4:14 pm

        I was wrong its Keystone’s River run gondola.

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      • Rob Withey April 2, 2018 / 4:49 pm

        Blackcomb Gondola will be XXL UniG at top and bottom and 2 x L at midstation

        Liked by 1 person

  9. jon April 13, 2018 / 6:43 pm

    Which lifts will the Blackomb gondola replace?

    Liked by 1 person

      • Duncan September 27, 2018 / 8:27 am

        Huh. I thought it was replacing Excalibur. But I checked and I guess you’re right.

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      • Thomas Jett September 27, 2018 / 11:44 am

        Eventually, they’re going to extend Excalibur to the bottom of Glacier and Jersey Cream.

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      • AvocadoAndy September 27, 2018 / 12:08 pm

        How exactly would they expand Excalibur? I would imagine they’d have to replace most of the components of the gondola, given that the technology is dated.

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      • Robert Withey September 27, 2018 / 7:35 pm

        I think major modifications would be needed to Excalibur for it to be extended as Doppelmayr no longer make terminals the work with DT grips. I think the best option would be to replace it entirely, or keep it and add another separate lift.

        Liked by 2 people

        • Ted December 20, 2018 / 2:12 pm

          Excalibur has ds grips, not dt. Dt are still i. Production.

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        • Robert Withey December 21, 2018 / 10:57 am

          Ted. You are correct about the grip type. Typo there. Should be DS.

          Liked by 1 person

  10. Ben September 26, 2018 / 7:33 am

    Why did the peak chair never run with gondolas?

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    • Andrew September 26, 2018 / 10:35 am

      Not sure. Perhaps after investing in the construction of the lift, they had the intentions of ordering the cabins later on, but maybe they didn’t have the money to do so at the time. It may also be a conditional thing, that lift is quite windy, even in the summer, which may have actually invalidated the usage of the gondola cabins. Whatever the case may be, I’ve never seen this lift running with gondolas, and I doubt they even have the cabins to do so.

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    • Robert Withey September 27, 2018 / 7:38 pm

      The original plan was to run with gondola cabins off Creekside, but the logistics a pretty big to do the changeover twice a year for a short season.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Collin September 27, 2018 / 9:59 pm

        Lake Louise does that with Grizzly and Glaicer. Glacier is the summer lift and is a Leitner high speed quad. Grizzly is a Poma 6 passenger gondola. In the summer they swap cabins from Grizzly over to Glacier and run it as a Chondola. I’m guessing they need completely different hanger arms to do that, as would be required to run the Creekside cabins on Peak. Also, Creekside recently started running in the summer to serve more bike trails.

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  11. Ben December 13, 2018 / 7:29 am

    Isn’t Whistler village gondola a 8 mgd?

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    • Rob Withey December 13, 2018 / 5:30 pm

      WVG has ten passenger cabins but is certified for nine people.

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      • Maxwell Uguccioni February 24, 2019 / 8:17 pm

        What do you mean by certified for 9?

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  12. Jonathan December 31, 2018 / 5:33 pm

    Does anyone know what happened with the Excalibur Gondola Crash?

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    • snowbasinlocal12894 December 31, 2018 / 7:16 pm

      Water got inside of the splice section of the tower tube. When the cold temps came the water turned to ice causing it to expand lifting the tower and the nuts and bolts broke. Causing the tower to fall right over. The term is called “Ice jacking”. Unfortunately the bolts gave away when people were on the lift.

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      • Rob Withey January 6, 2019 / 9:35 am

        Wasn’t nuts and bolts that broke, the welded flange separated from the tube.

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  13. jcpierce05 January 5, 2019 / 10:04 am

    I have always wondered about these lift upgrades:

    1. Replace Whistler Village Gondola with a 2 stage 6/10 chondola

    2. Replace Fitzsimmons with a bubble 6 chair

    3. Replace Creekside Gondola with a new 8 person gondola.

    4. Replace Franz and Big Red Express with the old Creekside Gondola

    5.Jersey Cream Express with bubble 6 chair

    6. Replace Showcase T-Bar with the old Franz chair

    7. Replace T-Bars 1 and 2 with new CLF 4

    8. Replace Horsrman T-Bar with new CLF 4

    9. Replace Magic with Chondola and extend up to mid-unload of Excalibur

    10. Replace Excalibur with new 4/8 MDG using the existing chairs from Excelrator and have 2 mid unloads, one where the existing one is, and then extend up to replace the Excelerator. Have another unload where the Excelrator begins.

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    • alex January 5, 2019 / 4:57 pm

      One question i have is can a chondola have a midstation? To date I cannot think of a chondola that contains one.

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      • Robert Withey January 6, 2019 / 6:01 am

        “One question i have is can a chondola have a midstation? To date I cannot think of a chondola that contains one.”

        You can, but they are large, complex terminals with lots of moving parts.

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        • Charlie February 2, 2019 / 4:36 pm

          Buck hill wants to install a chondola that would be a dumb detach, so would a fixed grip work?

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    • Rob Withey January 6, 2019 / 8:05 am

      I have always wondered about these lift upgrades:

      1. Replace Whistler Village Gondola with a 2 stage 6/10 chondola
      Never happen. Will always be a Gondola

      2. Replace Fitzsimmons with a bubble 6 chair
      May possibly be upgraded to a 6 or 8 for the bike park. Can’t see bubbles returning after they were removed.

      3. Replace Creekside Gondola with a new 8 person gondola.
      Sooner the better. 10 person, same as New Blackcomb gondola

      4. Replace Franz and Big Red Express with the old Creekside Gondola.
      Big red staying. Franz will be replaced with a new 4 or 6. Who knows when. Alignment is bottom of existing Franz to top of T-bars. Hopefully old Creek
      gondola disappears.

      5.Jersey Cream Express with bubble 6 chair
      May get replaced at some point. Definitely won’t have bubbles. Too windy.

      6. Replace Showcase T-Bar with the old Franz chair
      Glacier T-bar will stay as long as the ice is there. Old franz chair will hopefully disappear.

      7. Replace T-Bars 1 and 2 with new CLF 4
      Just need new T-bars. Good bad weather lifts.

      8. Replace Horsrman T-Bar with new CLF 4
      Glacier lift again. Ice recession means a total rethink of that lift.

      9. Replace Magic with Chondola and extend up to mid-unload of Excalibur
      On the old renaissance plan. Could happen in the future.

      10. Replace Excalibur with new 4/8 MDG using the existing chairs from Excelerator and have 2 mid unloads, one where the existing one is, and then extend up to replace the Excelerator. Have another unload where the Excelerator begins.
      Excal may get the third section going to Glacier Creek. If it were me, I would do it as new two section lift. Excel unlikely to change, but would be nice to
      see it extended up to say the Wishbone/Gandy Dancer split.

      Liked by 1 person

      • alex January 6, 2019 / 9:43 pm

        Is WB still considering the Showcase Gondola idea that was in the Blackcomb master plan?

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        • Robert Withey January 8, 2019 / 11:30 pm

          Don’t think so. The tunnel that is part of that plan is not viable. Rock conditions unfavourable.

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        • skiz November 1, 2019 / 1:21 pm

          anyone have any plans on the showcase gondola tunnel?
          Sounds very interesting

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    • skitheeast February 6, 2021 / 9:34 pm

      1) Whistler Village needs to be a gondola with direct access to Roundhouse. Fitz and Garbanzo exist so people who would prefer a chairlift can take that instead. However, the gondola could use a capacity increase.
      2) Perhaps a 6-pack for more capacity, but I am not sure they would add bubbles after removing them on the current lift in 2011.
      3) I would prefer to see either Creekside extended up to Roundhouse with a second stage (replacing Big Red) or an additional gondola out of Creekside altogether going up to Roundhouse in one stage. Creekside does need more capacity, but upgrading it in its existing configuration alone will simply cause Big Red to be overwhelmed.
      4 and 7) I kind of mentioned Big Red for 3. I would rather see Franz replaced alongside the T-Bars with a single detachable chairlift because they serve more similar terrain.
      5) Agree, although I do not think Vail would go for bubbles.
      6 and 8) I think the glacier lifts might need to be replaced with a tram similar to Big Sky’s or some other lift with few or no towers just because of glacier movement.
      9) Agree
      10) I would keep Excalibur as a gondola. If it were to be extended with a third stage, I would leave Excelerator alone and have the top terminal be at Glacier Creek to help with getting late-season skiers up to Glacier Express.

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      • Donald Reif February 6, 2021 / 10:52 pm

        1) Technically, getting up to the Roundhouse is a three-lift journey if you don’t take the gondola: Fitzsimmons to Garbanzo to Emerald 6. Of course, I think that in addition to a capacity increase on the gondola, it would help things to also increase capacity on Fitzsimmons by adding additional chairs to it and running it all day.

        10) I think I would keep the Blackcomb gondolas as is, but build new high speed six packs to supplement the Blackcomb Gondola, effectively filling the old roles of Wizard and Solar Coaster but with different alignments. Wizard would originate at Base II and run parallel to the Blackcomb Gondola, offloading at the top of Gear Jammer, where guests would then be able to access Catskinner to continue their journey to Rendezvous. The master plan has proposals for a high speed quad doing this, although it would start at Excalibur’s midstation instead of at the top of the Magic Chair.

        Solar Coaster, meanwhile, would start adjacent to Excelerator and end adjacent to Jersey Cream. This would make it so those starting by going up Excalibur would only have to take one lift to get to most of Blackcomb’s terrain instead of two (Excelerator to Jersey Cream). This wouldn’t make Excelerator redundant; rather, it would be an arrangement similar to how Breck uses the lower Peak 8 superchairs for different functions even though all of the Rocky Mountain SuperChair’s terrain is also accessible from the Colorado SuperChair. In this case, Excelerator would be for those going to the Glacier Express and Crystal Ridge, while Solar Coaster would be for those lapping the main face of Blackcomb as well as traveling to Seventh Heaven.

        On Whistler, I’d install a single high speed quad to replace Franz’s and the T-Bar, and another one on the alignment of the former Orange Chair. Franz’s would be relocated over to Blackcomb and used on the former pod of the Crystal Chair, though with a slightly different ending location just a short ways over from Crystal Ridge.

        https://www.google.com/maps/d/edit?mid=1UxJz8J8vpukcfazlCxYjvLarefidr775&usp=sharing

        Liked by 1 person

      • Rob Withey February 7, 2021 / 9:03 pm

        1. VG will have 4000pph like the BG one day.
        2. Fitz won’t be a bubble, but needs to be a 6 or 8 for the bike park.
        3. Another 4000pph gondola to Chic pea restaurant.
        4. New franz will be from the bottom of the current lift to top of the T-bar.
        5. 6 pack. No bubbles.
        6. Much thinking going on about the glacier. Showcase doesn’t have long where it is and there needs to be lift access to Blackcomb glacier.
        9. May happen.
        10. More than 2 stages will have way too many problems. 2nd stage to glacier Creek. Maybe parallel Excelerator to just below the Rendezvous.

        Liked by 2 people

    • Myles Svec May 23, 2021 / 10:51 am

      1. It would make sense to keep as a 10 person gondola as it has a mid station and it is the main lift on the mountain.

      2. I could see Fitzsimmons being replaced with a 6 pack, but without bubbles since Vail hates bubbles.

      3. That would make sense as Creekside is getting older and needs more capacity.

      4. I don’t think that will happen since there is lapp-able terrain off of Big Red and Franz’s and it wouldn’t make sense to have a gondola there.

      5. Once again, Jersey Cream as a 6 pack but without bubbles for the aforementioned reason.

      6. I’m not sure what to say about this idea.

      7. The master plan is to replace Franz’s with a HSQ and extending it to the top of t-bars 1 and 2 which will replace t-bars 1 and 2.

      8. Good idea but I’m not sure how that would work with the glacier moving all the time.

      9. A FGQ would work fine here I think.

      10. I would replace Excalibur with a new gondola with a third stage going to the bottom of Glacier and Jersey Cream.

      Like

  14. Logan January 8, 2019 / 10:01 pm

    The Blackcomb gondola has 21 towers on each side.

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  15. Charlie February 2, 2019 / 4:37 pm

    Buck hill wants to install a chondola that would be a dumb detach, so would a fixed grip work?

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    • Robert Withey February 6, 2019 / 12:49 pm

      Fixed grip gondolas really don’t work as the terminal speed has to be low for safe loading/unloading.

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    • Rob withey October 31, 2019 / 10:51 pm

      No room to keep it. We had to use the same alignment. Also very expensive to keep around as a back up lift

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    • Morris May 21, 2021 / 1:09 am

      I’ve seen that term used a couple times and I’m not sure what it means. What is a “dumb detach”?

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  16. Charlie February 7, 2019 / 7:58 am

    It will be interesting to see what the final product is because there is no room at the bottom or top for a detach and it would be maybe 1,000 feet long

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  17. Maxwell Uguccioni March 8, 2019 / 11:22 pm

    What’s next on the chopping block? 7th heaven express being replaced with 7th Heaven 6 Express?

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    • Rob Withey March 9, 2019 / 10:55 am

      Lots of other things need to happen in conjunction with an upgrade there.

      Like

  18. gavin May 26, 2019 / 3:19 pm

    I hope for 7th Heaven 6 or Franz’s express for next year. Or maybe both!

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  19. Gavin May 26, 2019 / 3:21 pm

    Also is the Olympic chair needed? Isn’t it really long for a beginner lift? What is it used for

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    • Donald Reif May 26, 2019 / 3:31 pm

      Olympic serves a learning area. And before the Garbanzo Express was put in in 1999, Olympic was how you got from the gondola midstation to the Black Chair, Garbanzo’s predecessor. Black Chair ran up Seppo’s run, and I think you can still find the tower foundations for it there in the summer.

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    • Donald Reif January 1, 2020 / 9:47 pm

      From Blackcomb’s Master Plan, the Crystal Ridge Express and Catskinner Express lifts have been built. All that’s really left is the proposed high speed quad from the Excalibur midstation to the bottom of the Catskinner Express.

      On Whistler’s side, the Emerald 6 Express and Harmony 6 Express lifts have been built. Also proposed is the replacement of Franz’s and the Whistler T-Bar with a high speed quad. There is also a proposed massive expansion to the south and west, creating a new base area with gondola access at Cheakamus, as well as two more gondolas out of Creekside base (one running to the top of Garbanzo, and another to a point below the West Bowl). This proposal also includes several new pods of trails serviced by three high speed quads, as well as a high speed six pack out of a “Whistler South” base area at the top of the Cheakamus gondola, also containing a learning area with its own fixed grip quad.

      The Whistler master plan also has some infill lifts that have been proposed but never built. One would be Yellow Express, a high speed quad that would run parallel to the Emerald 6 Express. Another would be the upgrading of the Olympic chair to a chondola. And third would be two additional chairlifts in the Symphony Ampitheatre to supplement the Symphony Express: a high speed six pack called the Flute Peak Express to serve trails on the far side of the Flute Bowl (with an optional alternative alignment containing just a high speed quad), and an egress fixed grip quad up Robertson’s to eliminate the traverse back to the Harmony 6 Express.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Rob Withey January 2, 2020 / 10:00 pm

      The 2010 maps are out of date. 2013 is the current version.

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  20. Gavin January 1, 2020 / 10:02 pm

    I don’t know if the flute peak express would need to be a six pack. And the whistler south expansion would definitely need snowmaking. Upgrading the creekside gondola and big red would be better than another gondola in my opinion.

    A couple questions: Would olympic need to be a chondola? It seems unnecessary and detach quad seems enough.
    Also, would the detach quad running from Excalibur mid to catskinner be a reliver lift to blackomb gondola?

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    • Donald Reif January 2, 2020 / 12:00 am

      I think it would be a daily lift, seeing as it in conjunction with Catskinner would be a more direct route for getting to Rendezvous from the Excalibur midstation, as opposed to taking Excalibur to the Excelerator Express, then taking the Jersey Cream Express.

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    • Donald Reif January 2, 2020 / 11:57 am

      I don’t think Olympic would need to be a chondola. A fixed grip quad or a high speed quad with carpet would probably suffice.

      Like

  21. gavin January 19, 2020 / 3:54 pm

    With the lines on blackomb gondola in the past few weeks, the proposed detach from base 2 to catskinner is sorely needed.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Donald Reif January 19, 2020 / 4:43 pm

      If they build it, they should name it the Wizard Express as tribute to the previous high speed quad. They should call it that or the Cruiser Express, in tribute to the triple that Excalibur Stage II replaced.

      But yeah, that high speed quad really would come in handy, as it would make it possible to use a chairlift to lap most of the old Wizard pod. Maybe put it in a slightly alternate alignment that ends at the top of Slingshot, making it also possible to lap via chairlift the lower part of the former Solar Coaster pod.

      Liked by 1 person

  22. gavin January 23, 2020 / 11:19 pm

    The alpine lifts should be able to withstand higher wind speeds. I have been 4 times this season and all of them have been closed every time. Can detachable be retrofitted to run in higher wind speeds?

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    • skitheeast January 24, 2020 / 9:21 am

      The alignment, how high the lift sits above the ground and trees, the topography, etc. impact a lifts ability to run in high wind. For this season specifically, many alpine Whistler Blackcomb lifts were closed for a while due to a lack of snow.

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    • Rob Withey January 25, 2020 / 9:39 pm

      Most recently they have been closed because of avalanche risk. The alpine lifts are exposed, so weather will shut them down far more often than other lifts.

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      • Paul Hothersall January 29, 2020 / 12:35 pm

        Rob – One valid point is the Blackcomb Gondola seems much much more susceptible to wind than the Solar Coaster used to be. And additionally the time to decouple to run the lower / upper line separate (mainly as the thing breaks down A LOT) seems to take a while. And finally on said windy days (like ahem right now) having the upper line run at a slow speed means the LOWER line also runs at a slow speed. Therefore the storm day return cycle to base laps kind of suck. This is the same problem the village gondola has. I do wonder at what point an ops decision could be made to force unload everyone at mid station??

        Liked by 1 person

        • Donald Reif January 29, 2020 / 12:46 pm

          This is definitely an argument that Solar Coaster should’ve been upgraded to a high speed six pack while having the gondola only replace Wizard. Then again, Vail wanted it to be possible to have a one-seat ride to Rendezvous.

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        • Rob Withey January 29, 2020 / 11:42 pm

          So a couple of things. The BG was having issues at Christmas, but otherwise has run fine including some days with no stops, despite your assertions on facebook it’s always broken down. Yes the gondola is more susceptible to wind, but Solar ran a lot of days it shouldn’t have. The BG is there for 4 season traffic so a few days in winter when wind is a problem is the price you pay for that. Also note that if the lift is split it is limited to half speed (3 m/s), so not much is gained by doing that.

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        • AvocadoAndy February 11, 2020 / 6:19 pm

          Honestly, what wouldn’t have been a bad idea there would have been to have a similar setup to Fitz and Garbonzo with the two lifts running a nearly identical line next to the gondola. Catskinner’s not too far off from that, but since it loads so much higher it’s not quite the same. I don’t see this coming anytime in the near future, it’s possible whenever Magic gets replaced they’ll extend it up a little further but with the giant garage to the right of the gondola preventing the lift being built next to it on the right and the left being crowded by the gondola’s location next to the lodge it probably can’t happen.

          Liked by 1 person

        • Donald Reif February 11, 2020 / 8:08 pm

          One to thing about the Fitz/Garbanzo split is that Garbanzo doesn’t get one quite all the way to Roundhouse. You have to take Big Red or Emerald 6 the rest of the way. But yeah, Whistler has the more ideal setup where you can either ride the gondola all the way up or take the chairlifts route of Fitzsimmons, Garbanzo and Emerald 6 or Big Red and get extra runs and EpicMix check-ins. Whereas with Blackcomb, you have to take a gondola onto it from any of the three entry points (Blackcomb Gondola, Excalibur or Peak 2 Peak), and only the Excalbur route has a chairlift included (with Excelerator).

          Will be interesting to see what happens when Vail decides that it’s time for Excalibur to be replaced, seeing as that lift’s getting up there in age.

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        • Thomas Jett February 12, 2020 / 4:41 pm

          I believe that there are two plans down the line for Blackcomb. One will be a lift running from the Excalibur midstation to the bottom of Catskinner. This will serve as a third staging route. The other will be a a third stage of excalibur to the bottom of Jersey Cream. This will probably be realized with a replacement.

          Like

        • Donald Reif February 12, 2020 / 6:05 pm

          Thing about the Excalibur stage 3 is that that would probably entail having to replace all the grips on the existing stages, since the DS grip is no longer produced. That, or like Telluride’s parking access gondola, stage 3 would have to be built as a separate independent system.

          The proposed high speed quad from Excalbur’s midstation to the bottom of Catskinner might go hand in hand with an upgraded Magic Chair.

          Like

  23. powderforever45 January 29, 2020 / 8:18 pm

    Is there any way to give harmony more wind protection? It has been closing a lot because of that.

    Like

    • Rob Withey January 29, 2020 / 11:35 pm

      No. You can try calling mother nature and see if she’ll dial the winds down, but I dont think you’ll have much luck.

      Liked by 1 person

  24. skier72 February 11, 2020 / 5:18 pm

    High Alpine T-Bar was relocated from Fortress Mountain, AB.

    Like

  25. Carson February 22, 2020 / 9:13 pm

    Is their any remains of orange double?

    Like

    • Rob Withey February 23, 2020 / 2:57 am

      No. It was all removed right around the Olympics in 2010.

      Like

    • milanyvr February 23, 2020 / 5:20 pm

      Parts where donated to Mt. Seymour as they have the same type of lift.

      Like

  26. gavin February 23, 2020 / 10:13 pm

    Is the detach quad spanning Franz’s up to the t bars confirmed?
    also, I think they should build a fixed grip at the junction of highway 86 going up to bagel bowl so skiers can make it back to the peak without big red, relieving pressure off it as well as a much shorter time option.

    Like

    • Rob Withey February 23, 2020 / 10:50 pm

      Not soon. It’s on the master plan but there is no time line for it.

      Like

      • Morris November 15, 2021 / 6:50 pm

        Since Big Red is getting replaced in the near future, couldn’t they just use it to replace the Franz/T-Bars alignment?

        Like

        • Peter Landsman November 15, 2021 / 6:54 pm

          The more I hear from lift companies about production constraints, the more I think Vail’s going to need to reuse lifts like Big Red next year. I just don’t see 19 brand new lifts happening in addition to all of the other projects already signed. It’s going to be interesting to see how it all plays out.

          Liked by 2 people

        • Myles Svec November 15, 2021 / 7:16 pm

          I think all the six packs and gondolas Vail builds next year will be brand new but some of the HSQs, and fixed grip lifts will be reused.

          Like

        • Donald Reif November 15, 2021 / 7:17 pm

          With completely new towers, it could get the Emerald 4 to Catskinner treatment (reuse the chairs and towers, all-new towers from Doppelmayr):

          Liked by 1 person

        • Rob Withey November 15, 2021 / 7:20 pm

          Red is spare parts and scrap at this point.

          Liked by 1 person

        • skitheeast November 16, 2021 / 1:46 pm

          Regarding production constraints: It will be tough across the board, but I think sorting everything out now (as opposed to the traditional window in a couple of months) will help. Green Ridge from Okemo is being reused for E/F at Jack Frost, and I could see Sunbrook from Mt. Snow, Eagle from Park City, Eaglet from Park City, and Mountain from Stowe being reused for other fixed-grip constructions. Plus, part of Peru can go to Vail to help with Sundown, part of Comstock can go to Heavenly to help with North Bowl, and Silverlode is so young that it can perhaps be reused entirely somewhere.

          Liked by 1 person

  27. David November 22, 2020 / 1:55 am

    I would like to know what happened to the Mountie signboard that used to be at the Whistler Village Gondola mid station

    Like

    • Rob Withey November 22, 2020 / 10:38 am

      Don’t ever recall seeing one.

      Like

  28. David November 30, 2020 / 12:25 am

    I would like to know why the Excalibur Gondola is not open for sightseeing on Blackcomb Mountain in the summer

    Like

    • Robert Withey November 30, 2020 / 10:32 am

      Excalibur doesn’t take you anywhere you can see anything. That’s why we have the other three gondolas open. Lots of views from them.

      Liked by 1 person

  29. Alex January 31, 2021 / 9:33 pm

    Question for AussieRob – I noticed the Tram from Rendezvous to 7th Heaven on the Blackcomb Master Plan. Has Whistler ever considered anything similar from Roundhouse to top of Harmony? or perhaps an extension of the Whistler Village Gondola to that location?

    Like

    • Rob Withey February 1, 2021 / 2:55 pm

      There is nothing in the plans for the top of Harmony or the Peak. I would personally like to see a funifor or maybe a tram to the top of the peak for sight seeing and morning staff access purposes. Would also add a bit of capacity in the winter.

      Like

  30. Apple Gille August 19, 2021 / 2:20 pm

    Horstman, all the way at the bottom, still says that it’s operating, yet it says 1987-2020

    Like

    • themav August 19, 2021 / 2:51 pm

      Likely just a mistake in the spreadsheet. The lift was removed last summer.

      Like

  31. ski man December 10, 2021 / 6:54 pm

    A Harusch t-bar sounds very interesting

    Liked by 1 person

  32. The ski guy December 22, 2021 / 7:10 pm

    I wonder if the new creekside gondola will have a mid station at the base of redchair and continue up to the top of Garbo? I feel like this would be great because red chair is such a bottleneck and having a second section up to Garbo would relive it a lot.

    Like

    • Rob Withey December 22, 2021 / 7:45 pm

      It won’t. Both new lifts will be the same alignment as the old ones.

      Like

  33. The Ski Guy December 27, 2021 / 3:59 pm

    Okay thanks rob. I was also wondering about the franz detachable from the current base of the fixed grip triple to the top of the t bars. I have heard numerous rumours regarding big red parts being moved over to the new franzs chair this year? I have also heard that no one knows anything regarding that. I’m almost 100 percent sure this isn’t true at the moment. But would love to see something like this in the future. I’m hoping that it will happen sometime.

    Like

  34. The Ski Guy WB December 27, 2021 / 3:59 pm

    Okay thanks rob. I was also wondering about the franz detachable from the current base of the fixed grip triple to the top of the t bars. I have heard numerous rumours regarding big red parts being moved over to the new franzs chair this year? I have also heard that no one knows anything regarding that. I’m almost 100 percent sure this isn’t true at the moment. But would love to see something like this in the future. I’m hoping that it will happen sometime.

    Like

    • Rob Withey December 27, 2021 / 5:32 pm

      Red will be stripped for spares and the rest scrapped. The new Franz’s you mention is on the master plan. Timeline unknown.

      Like

  35. Peter Landsman March 25, 2022 / 12:37 pm

    In light of Big Red and Creekside going away soon, I just did a major picture update for almost all of WBs lifts.

    Liked by 3 people

  36. Morris April 28, 2022 / 2:55 am

    Any info on the Abrakadabra platter? I don’t remember it at all despite skiing WB at the time it was installed.

    Like

    • Rob Withey April 28, 2022 / 2:58 am

      It was where the tube park is located now. The old skidder chair used to run on that alignment earlier. It was next to the parking lots. (7 & 8)

      Like

  37. Ben E January 16, 2023 / 8:12 am

    Hey Peter I’m in Whistler right now would like me to take some photos of Creekside Gondola and Big Red

    Like

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