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Ski Link

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 

I haven't seen mention of this on Epic anywhere and I'm curious what people here think of the idea.

 

The Canyons and Solitude ski resorts have proposed a lift joining the two resorts.  The lift would depart from the Canyons, climb over the Wasatch crest and deposit skiers at the West end of Solitude's Moonbeam parking lot.  It would be a transportation lift only, no mid station.

 

In order to "speed up" the process three of our local representatives have proposed a bill that would sell the Talisker corporation (owners of the Canyons) 30.6 acres of national forest land upon which to build the lift.  This land sale would not subject them to the normal environmental processes.  The main reasons given for the lift are a savings in miles driven by folks staying in Park City and driving to the BCC.  The backers of the proposal claim a savings of a million miles driven per year.

 

You can find more info about the lift and proposal on www.skilink.com 

 

As a long time Solitude skier I'm not real enthused about the proposal for a number of reasons.

 

What do you all think?

 

 

post #2 of 18

The reasoning behind this is humorous. Decrease traffic in BCC? First off - I have never seen traffic at Solitude. Brighton on the other hand....parking lot full w/ text messages going off from the canyon sheriff saying lot is full.

 

 

Secondly - It will take a lot of customers to make this lift popular/viable/useful and on top of that the last thing I think The Canyons wants to do is spread their customers (and their customers $) across the Wasatch. 

 

Maybe they think people will want to base their trip out of the canyons and then from there ski BCC/PC, and return home at night to empty their wallets out for dinner. 

 

Final thoughts: They have the right idea for tourists, lots of skiing, interlinked resorts, one ticket 3 resorts possible. Traffic from BCC/PC can flow effortlessly and this could really change the dynamics for Solitude/Brighton (and BCC in general). Heck maybe there is an even smaller fraction of LCC visitors who would consider staying @ The Canyons and take the tram to ski BCC, but that is getting pretty marginal. And if their goal is to decrease I-80/Wasatch Blvd/BCC traffic then this lift may in fact do that and make some peoples vacation much easier. This seems pretty European of them in a weird way. Portes du Soilel or whatever if you will. There will be the "Avioraz" (aka Brighton/Solitude) and the easier more rolling groomer resort The Canyons (Morzine). 

 

 

post #3 of 18

As you may know, a number of years ago Sugarbush, VT built the ~11,000' Slidebrook Express chair to link their two ski mtns.  It roughly follows a horizontal contour line about 300-400' above the base of the two areas and is strictly a transportation lift.  It's basically a shuttle between the two distinct trail layouts.  In recent years due to costs and maintenance they have elected to run it only on weekends/holidays.  They continue to use shuttle buses to supplement the lift and for weekday operations.  In the event of a breakdown this lift would be very tedious to evacuate if loaded with occupants.  They have concerns about running it in extremely cold/harsh weather for that reason. There are no "in bounds" runs underneath it, but there is a lift line that they can travel for access from underneath.  They like to have snowpack on that lift line when operating the chair to ensure access by patrol and snowmobile for emergencies.

 

I could see how a local BCC skier/boarder might not be too happy with the Ski Link plan due to increased crowds on the slopes.  But as an out of towner it would make me more interested in basing a vacation at the Canyons knowing I would have access to better snow and more terrain in BCC while being near Park City for après ski activities. I guess in Utah they are talking about a gondola or tram?  I wonder what issues that presents in bad weather?  No comment about road traffic impact.  It surprises me that they are planning this in the current economy, maybe the build date is still ten years out??

post #4 of 18

I like the idea.  I see positives from it, however, I have not thought out all the negatives.  If the skilink is there, I'd definitely use it several times during the ski season, and maybe even off season.

post #5 of 18

Devil is in the details. Where in the canyons does it connect from? I think alot of the value depends on that. I had assumed it was the top of 9990 based on the TGR thread. Is that correct? Or is it based out of Red Pine? Or from some other location?

 

Also how are lift tickets going to be arranged? This is being sold as a public transport system to reduce car trips. Will single round trip tickets be available cheaply for transportation (not skiing) and will lift hours be scheduled based on transport rather than skiing time tables, e.g. open early so people can get to their destination before the slopes open, run late so people can apres ski and then return to wherever they came from? Are there plans for a shared ticket? Or if you are based in snyderville (for example) do you have to buy two full price tickets one to ride to solitude via this lift and then ski at solitude?


Edited by tromano - 11/27/11 at 9:49am
post #6 of 18

I hope they link it with PCMR. DV is out since no boarders allowed.  I just think the Canyons is out of the way.

post #7 of 18

I just don't see that many tourist staying at the Canyons and going to BCC on a daily basis.   Offer a free bus this season first and see how many take it? All of these projections are just pie in the sky, build it and they will come BS.

 

They really need to just work on combining the three PC resorts under one ticket.   Hell DV and PC already share a boundary and they can't even work it out?

 

It's just a ploy by Talisker to sell more real estate, because basically their hill blows.

post #8 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by SHREDHEAD View Post

I just don't see that many tourist staying at the Canyons and going to BCC on a daily basis.   Offer a free bus this season first and see how many take it? All of these projections are just pie in the sky, build it and they will come BS.

 

They really need to just work on combining the three PC resorts under one ticket.   Hell DV and PC already share a boundary and they can't even work it out?

 

It's just a ploy by Talisker to sell more real estate, because basically their hill blows.


This is basically what I thought, too. Sure people will go to BCC if there's a gondola taking them there, but would they have gone otherwise? Are they really cutting any traffic?

 

You have three resorts with like 9,000 acres, somewhere around 100 restaurants, shops, Olympic landmarks, all kinds of activities, etc. in Park City--are there really that many people that base in PC just to make the hour drive to BCC all trip? Obviously there are some that do it for a day or two, but I just don't see it as a huge issue.

 

So yeah, the whole traffic thing is a nice, little (transparent) diversion from what's really going on.

 

post #9 of 18
post #10 of 18
Logistically wouldn't it make more sense to link PCMR to Brighton?

Beyond that, one more lift and a pair of scissors later the Wasatch would be like Europe. Whether that's a good thing or not is another story!
post #11 of 18

I agree that Devil is in the details.  I now wonder also how practical is it to ride over the summit.  Three uncertain aspects are the location of it, operating hours, and costs (resort + gondola?).  Obviously Taliskar's primary objective is generating revenue from real estate sales, etc.  I much prefer having access to two or more resorts with one pass.  How about a Utah pass?  That'd be another thread.

post #12 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by tromano View Post

Devil is in the details. Where in the canyons does it connect from? I think alot of the value depends on that. I had assumed it was the top of 9990 based on the TGR thread. Is that correct? Or is it based out of Red Pine? Or from some other location?

 

Also how are lift tickets going to be arranged? This is being sold as a public transport system to reduce car trips. Will single round trip tickets be available cheaply for transportation (not skiing) and will lift hours be scheduled based on transport rather than skiing time tables, e.g. open early so people can get to their destination before the slopes open, run late so people can apres ski and then return to wherever they came from? Are there plans for a shared ticket? Or if you are based in snyderville (for example) do you have to buy two full price tickets one to ride to solitude via this lift and then ski at solitude?


Update: It is worse than I thought. The proposed gondola will connect to the canyons lift system at the top of the daybreak chair. For those unfamiliar with the ins and outs of the Canyons lift system here are some instructions on how to get to Solitude from the Canyons parking lot:

 

  1. Ride the Cabrio
  2. Ride up Flight of the Canyons
  3. Cruise down to tombstone
  4. Ride up tombstone
  5. Cruise down to peak 5 chair
  6. Ride up peak 5 chair
  7. Cruise down to day break chair.
  8. Ride up day break chair.
  9. Download on the proposed gondola.
  10. Walk across the parking lot

 

So yea it will take 2 hours to get to Solitude. 

 

Count me in the opposed camp.

post #13 of 18
I worked at The Canyons and the layout is mind-bogglingly bad. They desperately need a link from the resort base (or even better the parking lot) to the base of 9990/Peak 5.

Chicane (the run from Red Pine to Tombstone) is terrifying.

Seeing that sequence of lifts I can't see this 'link' as being anything more than a gimmick.
post #14 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by SHREDHEAD View Post

 

It's just a ploy by Talisker to sell more real estate, because basically their hill blows.



This is exactly right.  The talk about reducing traffic in Big Cottonwood is just that... talk.  And create 500 full time jobs?  Doing what?  This is just a land grab to line the pockets of a Canadian company.  Just finished writing emails to my elected officials stating as much.

 

post #15 of 18

Building more condos of course.  wink.gif
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jxb View Post



This is exactly right.  The talk about reducing traffic in Big Cottonwood is just that... talk.  And create 500 full time jobs?  Doing what?  This is just a land grab to line the pockets of a Canadian company.  Just finished writing emails to my elected officials stating as much.

 



 

post #16 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by CM View Post

I worked at The Canyons and the layout is mind-bogglingly bad. They desperately need a link from the resort base (or even better the parking lot) to the base of 9990/Peak 5.
Chicane (the run from Red Pine to Tombstone) is terrifying.
Seeing that sequence of lifts I can't see this 'link' as being anything more than a gimmick.


Yep. The lift system is perhpas the worst I have seen. Example: The tombstone chair bottom is only a short distance from the main base area (like maybe a half mile), but AFAIK there is no easy way to get there from the main base. I wonder why they did it that way. Why not have it connected with the main base area? It would be so much easier to get to the southern part of the resort if you did not first have to go to redpine.

 

 


Edited by tromano - 12/3/11 at 10:35pm
post #17 of 18



 

Quote:
Originally Posted by CM View Post

I worked at The Canyons and the layout is mind-bogglingly bad. They desperately need a link from the resort base (or even better the parking lot) to the base of 9990/Peak 5.
Chicane (the run from Red Pine to Tombstone) is terrifying.
Seeing that sequence of lifts I can't see this 'link' as being anything more than a gimmick.


 



Quote:
Originally Posted by tromano View Post


Yep. The lift system is perhaps the worst I have seen. Example: The tombstone chair bottom is only a short distance from the main base area (like maybe a half mile), but AFAIK there is no easy way to get there from the main base. I wonder why they did it that way. Why not have it connected with the main base area? It would be so much easier to get to the southern part of the resort if you did not first have to go to redpine.

 

 


Riding red pine is not the issue. Running Chicane is another matter. Chicane is one of the scariest run I have ever been on. Loads of out of control skier rocketing down the trail - train wrecks in the making. Reminds me of Chips run @ snowbird a few years ago before they re-contoured it. I ski Killington on weekends so I'm not exaggerating about the train wrecks.   
 

 

post #18 of 18
It's terrifying when you're skiing it at your own pace, but think about being an instructor with a group of kids behind you rolleyes.gif

Plus the first year I was there they had tree islands in the middle of the run too funnelling people in further.

On the whole I found the trails there very narrow - it was explained to me at the time that's how it's done in the East and it was brought over as a part of ASC developing that part of the resort.

It was also explained to me that the reason there are no links from the base to Tombstone or Peak 5/9990 had to do with potential real estate sales.
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