Gondola, 4 Points lift to open today

Available terrain doubles; Storm Peak hopeful for this weekend



Gondola cable replacement

Workers at the Steamboat Ski Area on Monday were completing the installation of a new haul rope for the gondola.

Workers at the Steamboat Ski Area on Monday were completing the installation of a new haul rope for the gondola.

— With today's opening of the gondola and 4 Points chairlift, Steamboat Ski Area officials have more than doubled the amount of terrain available to skiers and snowboarders.

Now with six lifts and 32 trails encompassing 365 acres open for use, the ski area hopes to make Storm Peak accessible as early as this weekend, Steamboat Ski and Resort Corp. spokesman Mike Lane said Tuesday.

The gondola is ready to take its first passengers of the year to Thunderhead Peak after crews finished installing a new 60-ton, 3.4-mile haul rope Monday. The ski area determined the cable needed to be replaced this fall, due to irregularities in the old haul rope that sometimes interfered with loading.

With the opening of the 4 Points lift, skiers and riders will be able to access trails including Rainbow, Tornado Lane, Hurricane, Typhoon and the upper portions of Tornado, Nelson's Run and Twister. The 4 Points Hut will also open daily beginning today.

The Burgess Creek lift opened Tuesday, but was shut down for an hour in the afternoon due to an electrical problem, Lane said.

Burgess Creek is not the first lift to give the ski area problems in this young season. On Saturday, its second day in operation, the new, high-speed Christie Peak Express lift was shut down twice due to ice buildup and mechanical problems stemming from a broken belt.

The ski area has received 32 inches of snow in the past two weeks, and on Tuesday reported a 19-inch base at mid-mountain and a 25-inch base at the summit, varying from packed powder to man-made conditions.

The ski area shouldn't expect much more natural snow this week. A weak storm is due to come into Steamboat Springs tonight, dropping only about an inch of powder before clearing Thursday morning, National Weather Service meteorologist Ken Ludington said.

There are indications that a second, warmer storm will come through the area sometime during the weekend, however it is still unclear whether it will bring rain or snow to Steamboat, Ludington said.

- To reach Melinda Dudley, call 871-4203

or e-mail mdudley@steamboatpilot.com


mtroach 7 years, 12 months ago

Great news, things are falling into place for that mid december dumping. Bring on the powder!!


Brent Boyer 7 years, 11 months ago

All: I've added a link at the top of this story to a video segment we produced about the installation of the new haul rope. Hope it provides some valuable insight into the process.

Brent Boyer Editor, Steamboat Pilot & Today


dave reynolds 7 years, 12 months ago

What no whiners..where are all of you i cann't believe you pass this oppertunity to bash yet again the management of the ski area


mud 7 years, 12 months ago

I heard a rumor from this guy that the ski area didn't finish on time because they ran out of money, so they waited for lift ticket revenue to pay for it.


RoxyDad 7 years, 12 months ago

Mud You are joking aren't you?? You can't possibley believe that.

I want to know who the lucky people are that get to ride the gondola for the first time after the cable is changed. Ha Ha. I think I will wait a few days.

I heard a story that the original cable/gondola was weight tested by putting kegs of Coors beer on it. In providing the kegs the Gondola was named the silver bullet for a few years.

Does anyone know if this is a true story??


bubba 7 years, 12 months ago

Roxydad, you didn't hear? Fortress went broke because of all of the money they paid god for the warm weather to delay the ski area opening, that's why they couldn't afford to finish!


inmate2007 7 years, 12 months ago

bubba, wrong! Fortress paid for the snow to fall in B.C., a completed development. It will be 5+ years before they complete Steamboat.................


dave reynolds 7 years, 11 months ago

thats funny bubba..careful though some of these rocket scientists might believe that too..Roxydad like you I hope mud is joking if not and he/she believes that..Oh my GAWD now that is scary..isn't fortress a multi billion dollar company


jack legrice 7 years, 11 months ago

Roxydad From what I remember there were 760 kegs used for the load test . Having been part of the orginal instalation, I want to say great job to all involved in the replacment of the cable. Most people have no idea of what was involved to replace the cable. Again Thanks to all who made this happen. Also thanks to Intrawest for fixing the mess that ASC left them with.


RoxyDad 7 years, 11 months ago

I also want to congradulate everyone involved in replacing the cable. Steamboat is great, the ski resort is great. I have NO complaints - only anticipation of great fun.

I have one question, How did they get that huge cable strung up on the towers?? and after watching the video I want to get one of those huge knitting needles the guy was using! Ha Ha.

My grandma could make a quilt in about 10 minutes with that baby!!


mud 7 years, 11 months ago

Ask and you shall receive paddle. yes that was a joke.


jack legrice 7 years, 11 months ago

They used a small crane where they could. Next time you ride the gondy look at the top of the cross arm, you will see a couple of loop type things. They hook a hoisting device [grip hoist] and then start pulling on the handle till they get it up to the sheaves. Lots of arm power!See you on the slopes


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