Guests at 49 Degrees North, 49 miles from Spokane, Wash., will be riding a new double chairlift on Angel Peak this winter and enjoying a Mid Mountain Lodge by 2014.
The Angel Peak chair is a fixed-grip double that was purchased from Copper Mountain Resort in Colorado last spring. The lift is about 1,550 vertical feet covering some 4,400 feet of slope length. The chair will be able to transport 1,100 people an hour to the summit in just under 10 minutes.
Access to the summit for the past several years has only been possible with a 10-15 minute hike. The new chair provides access to some of 49 Degree North’s best terrain.
The two story Mid-Mountain Lodge will be placed at the top of the Blastface and Silver Ridge trail junction. It overlooks the Pend Oreille Valley and the East Basin. Facilities include a heated deck, meeting area, restrooms, dining with in-floor heating, a menu including beer and wine, and first-aid room. The Mid-Mountain facility is expected to take the pressure off the base lodge during weekends and holidays.
The Angel Peak project sits adjacent to the proposed Quartzite Wilderness Area, an unlogged drainage in the Colville National Forest. The view includes massive stands of old-growth Douglas fir, ponderosa pine, western hemlock and western cedar.
“We’re extremely fortunate to have a proposed wilderness area right next to the resort,” John Eminger, President and CEO of 49 Degrees North said when the lift purchase was announced in early summer. He said he hoped “folks will take an interest in this amazing resource.”
Funding for the ski area’s $15 million, five-phase master plan is coming from Washington Trust Bank. The plan was developed in 2006 in partnership with the Forest Service.
Photo: Angel Peak Chair construction, courtesy 49 Degrees North (Facebook)