The first high-speed chair on the mountain, more snowmaking and parking, and base lodge upgrade are in the works at Sundance Mountain Resort.
Last December, actor Robert Redford sold the ski and snowboard mountain he founded -- plus acreage around it -- to a real estate investment group: Broadreach Capital Partners, of Palo Alto, Calif., and Cedar Capital Partners, based primarily in London.
As promised, the new owners announced they will invest to modernize the 450-acre ski and snowboard mountain that opened in 1969. To start, this summer a new high-speed chair will replace fixed-grip Rays Lift for a seven-minute ride to the top of Ray's/Mandan Summit -- midway to the top of the mountain.
Another fixed-grip chair will be installed for access to the backside off Mandan primarily for summer activities, the resort said. And in hopes of ensuring a timely opening date, the ownership will purchase more snow guns and dig a reservoir to enhance and expand the 100+ acres of snowmaking currently on the mountain.
Another welcome improvement for locals and visitors who have to drive up to the resort in the southern Wasatch Range east of Provo will be an additional 125-150 parking spaces in the tight canyon below 11,500-foot Mt. Timpanogos.
And, the new owners will also give the understated Creekside base lodge a makeover to increase capacity and modernize amenities, the resort said.
The recent sale of Sundance included 2,600 acres, with more than 1,800 acres already protected from development. A collection of some 95 luxury cottages and 10 mountain homes for rent scatter on the open ground above the main base area, where several studios and meeting spaces hide among the trees.
For Provo locals, Utahns, and visitors in the know, Sundance has always been a hideaway mountain and an anomaly in the hustle-and-bustle world of Western resorts.