First high-speed will get skiers and riders on slopes fast. (Eldora Mountain/Facebook)
The first high-speed chairlift on Eldora Mountain will debut this season, as the Colorado commuter mountain settles in under new ownership.
Utah-based Powdr Co. bought Eldora last year and opened its wallet to begin bringing the venerable local ski area up to date with some $11 million in improvements.
Central to the upgrade is the new Alpenglow six seater. Replacing a side-by-side pair of 1970-era fixed grip chairs Challenge and Cannonball, the new $6 million chair loads up at the main base area, between the Indian Peaks and Timbers lodges, and rises 1,000 vertical feet to the summit of Challenge Mountain. The trip will take 4-1/2 minutes – much shorter than before – and can carry up to 3,600 skiers and riders an hour.
Eldora management expects the new lift to shorten lift lines and spread skiers and snowboarders around the mountain’s 680 acres – including getting them to the expert terrain off Indian Peaks and Corona lifts.
Eldora is the closest mountain to the Denver-Boulder metroplex less than an hour’s drive away. Powdr Co.’s Rocky Mountain Pass includes Eldora, Copper Mountain and Winter Park – all popular Front Range winter destinations.
Also new at Eldora will be a partnership with outdoor dealer REI. Guides from the retailer will lead snowshoeing, fat biking and winter hikes – plus host a few social gatherings as well.
The new Alpenglow six-pack is one of six chairlifts installed over the summer in Colorado.