- 756 Posts. Joined 12/2005
- Location: Seattle
- Select All Posts By This User
That's a great shot of the lift at Val.
Thanks for digging that out.
I gotta agree, that lift at Val D'Isere is crazy and uncomparable to any others I've been on.
I mean like the Grand Massif lift on the Tignes glacier goes up a cliff but you're in a tram so you don't really realize you're 1000 feet high.
Oh, and the lift at Kitzbuhel, ah yes, 3S Bahn I think it was called, is a couple thousand feet high, and one of the gondolas has a see through floor!
Highlands had the wickedest one I've ever been on. It had two towers that strung cables between two different peaks with a huge crevasse underneath. I'm pretty sure there was no safety bar on it when I was there in 1983. I don't usually care about the bar but would have put it down on that ride if there was one.
I'm thinking the older, fixed chairs are going to be the type that have the steepest section between towers. Probably in part due to the fact that the towers built then for the chair lifts were smaller, therefore averaging out the gradient less. Also, a more bomber gripper than a detachable? Any corroboration for that? Does Europe employ more or less fixed chairs than the large American resorts?
Here, back in the day, Headwall was a pretty steep chair up the face, but now a huge six-pak, not so much. KT is also not a steep chair cable.
As a kid in Austria, I can attest to taking some T-bar rides that required a pair of lightweight kids to use some unusual skills to make it to the top.
Not the steepest, but the most frightening lift ride I know is the descent on the Shinyu double at Nozawa Onsen. This lift doesn't serve any ski runs; it just takes you from the village to some inns partway up the mountain, traveling up a creekbed lined with boulders and concrete spillways. It's an old center-pole with wooden slat seats that have about 2 inches of back support, and of course on the way down you're sitting there with all your gear on your back and in your lap, looking down 20 to 60 feet onto the rocks, concrete, frozen stream and at one point a ``safety net'' reinforced with steel bars guaranteed to break numerous bones should you happen to overbalance.
I've been up KT22, Scott's, Sublette, 7th Heaven & Harmony, Al's, Gad II and Supreme, and (as lift rides) they're all snoozers in comparison.
Chair lift near the Harakiri piste... Quite steep :)
Huh? Steep? Seventh Heaven? . Maybe they've got another one I don't know about?
Anyways, the latter part of 9990 at The Canyons has an elevatorish feel to it.
possibly the flattest terrain i've ever seen under a high speed chair.
whistler/blackcomb has some unbelievable terrain for beginners who want to try pow.... not to mention incredible steeps for experts if you're not riding 7th Heaven.
Perhaps they are refering to the original Peak Chair on Whistler Mountain? That thing felt like it was a hundred feet in the air at one point and was definitely a scary ride. The current Peak chair has a better tower arrangement so it is more reasonable.
But in either case, they're not really steep, just high.
the Peak Chair is about as impressive as it gets..... it goes about a hundred MPH over insane exposure the whole way.
i'm not sure how you could possibly confuse the Peak Chair with 7th Heaven. 7th Heaven is on Blackcomb (Peak Chair is on Whistler) and it accesses strictly beginner to intermediate terrain (at least on the front side).
i'm pretty sure that guy was just making a joke...
If we're not limiting this to chairlifts, the Eibseebahn connecting Grainau and the Zugspitze in Germany is the steepest I've seen. It has a vetical gain of 1950m in a length of 4450m. The cabins are small and it was built in the early 60s, so you really feel quite precarious.
This doesn't really do justice to the steepness, but it does give some sense of the scale: