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[New] Zuma Lift progress…A-Basin’s Montezuma Bowl

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
We took a hike up to see the progress of the new Zuma Quad that will be servicing the Montezuma Bowl expansion at A-Basin this season. After getting an OK that mountain was open with work off for the day we took a low impact line up beginning at lower Ramrod then pushed up towards Lenawee Mountain Lift base for a rest with next target the top of lift with a final left turn towards the goal of our first look at the new Zuma lift. We had no idea what we would find.

Lenawee Lift summit from top of Falcon Trail as we pass over tree line:

Passing the East Wall gate access…Hellish looking without snow:

The blade whip of the flight for life heli could be felt as the crew screamed overhead hugging upper East Wall then shooting over the ridge line between North Pole hiking gate and Lenawee quickly out of sight:

Reaching Lenawee off ramp looking back down on the shrink wrapped seats:

Our first look at the Leitner Poma quad structure from the Lenawee off-ramp with North Pole gate access in background. New grade cut noticeable:

Betsy perches near receiving structure of the new Zuma Lift which is anchored [12,472’] servicing approximately 400 acres worth of Montezuma Bowl:

Lefty … Righty…whatever. Obviously more work needed with the business end of that hammer:

I’m pointing down a South West centerline of Montezuma Bowl that Zuma lift will pull from:

Cement footings are waiting the additional work [and much of it I recon] that will soon hoist the Barking Bears:

Panning right to ridge line with views of Keystone and Breck:

With LakeDillon in the background, Betsy is looking through the binoculars back over towards Loveland pass:

From Zuma looking back over to Lenawee Lift with new grade cut obvious:

Top of Lenawee off ramp spying a bit downward to Norway Lift and Snow Plume Refuge:

At Norway off ramp imagining a ski line:

Snow Plume Refuge [12,456’] as Betsy checks some additional elevation notes:

Betsy holds at the runoff end of North Chute peering back up at Pali summit:

Working down towards mid mountain Exhibition Lift off load and last seasons new Black Mountain Lodge to find a bench and have some lunch. Notice new cement patio work:

After a lunch we began our next hike up to Pali lift summit but we’re soon forced to turn back as we noticed the lift’s upper wind sock suddenly fill horizontally Eastward with a line of black clouds quickly following. With temperature dropping out and knowing what would come next, camera was shoved deep in pack as we double timed it down to base where the tune shop gang prepping the season’s gear let us in to dry off. Fortunately, no lightning encountered as I thought how I rather prefer snowfall…soon to come.
post #2 of 19
Awesome! Thanks Don, I can't wait to ride one or two of those lifts

Oh... nice socks too
post #3 of 19
Thread Starter 
^^^bump...the way I rock-n-sock
post #4 of 19
Don, you've answered my thoughts about the new lift. I was wondering how it was going. Great pictures.

Looks like the heat wave has taken it's toll on the snow cover. Usually, there's some sign of snow up there.
post #5 of 19
Informative pics.

Next time you're up here, give me a shout and we'll meet up for lunch/dinner/drinks.
post #6 of 19
Oh wow, that's very exciting! Thanks for the pictures!
post #7 of 19
Thanks for the update! Lets hope parking is not a problem this season at the Basin.
Were still hard at it on the house (roof is on & hope drywall starts late Oct.) Were up every weekend & if your in the area let us know.
post #8 of 19
Great report!! Just one question- How wet and cold did you get on the way back to your car? The weather turned really awful here in Frisco in the afternoon. Hope you had the proper attire with you! Katy
post #9 of 19
What a great report.
post #10 of 19
Thanks! Can't wait to see what it's like in Winter.
post #11 of 19
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by Lars View Post
....Looks like the heat wave has taken it's toll on the snow cover. Usually, there's some sign of snow up there.
Yes Lars, we had initially expected to see some snow stashes at higher elevation as we started up the lower mountain [not pictured] which was lush and in parts quite soggy requiring greater traverse and caution not to damage underfoot. However, once tree line crossed, no significant snow hold out spotted. Unfortunately, an early storm prevented us from hiking over Pali spine to spy for snow on the better protected side. Can anyone confirm??

Here are the key indicators Betsy and I noticed…
This was the only snow form we found on wall side [glad we didn’t lug the skis]:

This liquid catch near Dercum’s Gulch is of low volume:
post #12 of 19
Am I the only one who noticed that Double D kept ahold of both his poles?

Nice one!
post #13 of 19
I think I saw duct tape artound those wrists!!!!!
post #14 of 19
Thread Starter 
Dook, Katy…anyone can drop a pole off a Vail lift [once] but it takes substantial character and humility to retrieve it. [At least that’s how I rationalize it now. Really appreciate the reminder u2 :]
post #15 of 19
Always here to help Don!

BTW, brace yourselves as I plan to be a "major" presence at LGCIV!

post #16 of 19
Did you get any confirmation/indication that the lift will be ready by start of the season? Is this going to be a fixed lift or high speed? My guess is fixed knowing the Basin....I am so excited to ski back there with a lift.....should be awesome. I anticipate 20 days at the basin this year. Mmmmm.....flat light and cold temps here we come. I bet that place will be crazy the first couple weeks the new lift is open....I think I will stay away and ski somewhere else. Thanks for the report. I should take a hike up there. What time were the crews off??
post #17 of 19
Nice pics.

The snow coverage (or lack thereof) isn't that unusual for mid-August. At least compared to recent years.
post #18 of 19
Nice shots Cant wait!
post #19 of 19
AWESOME pics Don!!! I've got my Abasin pass already(well paid for it at least) and can't wait to get this season started.
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