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Lowest & Highest Capacity Lifts


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#1 nathanvg

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Posted 02 May 2015 - 05:22 PM

I happened to run across the master plan for Sun Peaks (which I enjoyed skiing for the first time this year) and I noticed some unusual lift capacities. It got me wondering what the lowest and highest capacity lifts of each type (highest capacity quad, lowest capacity quad, etc.)

Might Sun Peaks have the highest capacity triple and the lowest capacity quad?

Burfield Quad 464
Chrystal Triple 2005

#2 snoloco

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Posted 02 May 2015 - 06:44 PM

Why build a quad with only 464pph? Wouldn't a double make more sense with 3x chair spacing vs a quad with 6x chair spacing?

#3 vons

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Posted 02 May 2015 - 07:41 PM

The quad probably cost less for the same capacity as the double.

#4 teachme

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Posted 02 May 2015 - 07:57 PM

I think the long term idea for Burfield was to upgrade to high speed if needed, hence same towers and such. The quad is a replacement for the first double on the mountain built back in the mists of time. At the same time, the village and centre of the mountain moved from the Burfield base to the new base up the road so I also think they did not want to encourage people to keep using that lift until the new village was built out. Yet they also had to keep a lift there as people had homes there. Bit of a disjointed answer but hope that helps.

As for Crystal, did not know its capacity was that high.

#5 SkiDaBird

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Posted 03 May 2015 - 12:02 AM

View Postsnoloco, on 02 May 2015 - 06:44 PM, said:

Why build a quad with only 464pph? Wouldn't a double make more sense with 3x chair spacing vs a quad with 6x chair spacing?

The extra weight also probably helps on an exposed upper mountain lift.

#6 nathanvg

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Posted 04 May 2015 - 03:54 PM

View Postteachme, on 02 May 2015 - 07:57 PM, said:

I think the long term idea for Burfield was to upgrade to high speed if needed, hence same towers and such.

An upgrade could occur but since the towers are very widely spaced, I don't think they could many more chairs. Even the HSQ version would likley be under 1000pph.

I was hoping someone on this site had a database that could quickly query for the highest and lowest capacity lifts. I have an old spreadsheet (from this site) for CO only. So I'll start a list based on that and the Sun peaks lifts

lowest capcity
FGD - Five Tress, Aspen Highlands, 600
FGT - Deep Termerity, Aspen Highlands, 1085
FGQ - Burfield, Sun Peaks 464
HSQ - Many at 1200
HSS - Super Bee, Copper, 2900
Gondola - Telluride Gondola, 1200

highest capacity
FGD - Haymeadow, Beaver Creek, 1465 (I'm skeptical but maybe it has a high capacity but they always ran it slowly, this lift was removed a few years back too)
FGT - Crystal, Sun Peaks, 2005
FGQ - Many tied at 2400
HSQ - Many at 2800
HSS - Many tied at 3600
Gondola - Steamboat, 2800 (likely higher with recent gondolas)

#7 snoloco

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Posted 04 May 2015 - 04:35 PM

The Whirlwind CTEC HSQ at Windham Mountain Resort can do 3,000 pph, but they do not run it at full design speed, so it's probably between 2,400 and 2,800 pph.

The lowest capacity 6-pack I've ridden is the Kaatskill Flyer at Hunter Mountain with 2,600 pph. That's actually a lower capacity than the design capacity of the Poma HSQ it replaced. It could do 3,000 pph, but it was run at 840 fpm instead of 1,000 fpm, so the capacity was around 2,400. The Kaatskill Flyer can and does run 1,100 fpm.

This post has been edited by snoloco: 04 May 2015 - 04:36 PM


#8 vons

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Posted 04 May 2015 - 05:18 PM

Lowest capacity six pack that I know of is Six shooter at moonlight basin at 1800pph. Six pacts at 2400pph are not that uncommon.

#9 Backbowlsbilly

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Posted 05 May 2015 - 05:08 AM

Lewis and Clark wins for lowest high speed quad at Spanish Peaks, Montana, 800 people per hour. (https://youtu.be/4ogatw6gDaQ) There also is a new 8 passenger Doppelmayr gondola at Solden, Austria which can do 3,600 people per hour and runs at a speed of 6.0 m/s.

#10 NHskier13

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Posted 06 May 2015 - 11:43 AM

Lowest six i've seen (and ridden) was the Summit Express at Ragged Mtn, NH. You can see the really wide chair spacing in the stations. ~12 seconds between each chair.

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#11 DonaldMReif

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Posted 06 May 2015 - 06:44 PM

That's an 1,800 pph lift.
YouTube channel for chairlift POV videos and other random stuff:
https://www.youtube....TimeQueenOfRome

#12 Liftkid99

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Posted 06 May 2015 - 09:30 PM

Burfield at Sun Peaks was the original Sundance chair and when it was there it didn't even run the full length of the current Sundance chair which is why the chair spacing on the current burfield chair is so far apart since they basically just moved the lift as if was when it was running the Sundance line and just adjusted the chair spacing. When I was at sun peaks I rode the burfield and it is a very long and slow ride but also very rewarding since it brings you from the bottom to a decent elevation on the mtn.

#13 Yooper Skier

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Posted 07 May 2015 - 01:13 AM

The Miner-Denver at Copper Peak. The installation survey has it down for 145fpm and an hourly capacity of 128. If memory serves, it has eight chairs.

#14 nathanvg

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Posted 10 May 2015 - 06:29 AM

List updated below based on feedback to date:

lowest capcity
FGD – only lift at Copper Peak (MI), 128
FGT - Deep Termerity, Aspen Highlands, 1085
FGQ - Burfield, Sun Peaks 464
HSQ - Lewis and Clark , Spanish Peaks, 800
HSS - Six shooter, Moonlight Basin & Summit Express, Ragged Mtn 1800
Gondola - Telluride Gondola, 1200

highest capacity
FGD - Haymeadow, Beaver Creek, 1465 (I'm skeptical but maybe it has a high capacity but they always ran it slowly, this lift was removed a few years back too)
FGT - Crystal, Sun Peaks, 2005
FGQ - Many tied at 2400
HSQ – Whirlwind, Windham at 3000
HSS - Many tied at 3600
Gondola – Solden 3600

#15 snoloco

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Posted 10 May 2015 - 09:56 AM

The chairs on the Whirlwind HSQ at Windham are very tightly spaced as seen from these photos.

Posted Image

Posted Image

Compare this to the East Peak Express, also at Windham which has a standard capacity of 2,400 pph.
Posted Image

Posted Image

#16 NHskier13

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Posted 10 May 2015 - 05:01 PM

I think there's been lower, such as places like the yellowstone club for hsq's, but I'd chip in the Zephyr Quad at Bretton Woods:
About 1200 pph.

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#17 skierdude9450

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Posted 11 May 2015 - 09:25 AM

I think the highest capacity gondola (in North America at least) is Vail's Gondola One. I think it's rated at 3,600 p/h, and they do a good job at filling every cabin during peak times. Lowest is probably the Mt. Rainier Gondola at Crystal. I'm not sure what the capacity is exactly, but it must be less than 1,000 p/h.
-Matt

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#18 NHskier13

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Posted 11 May 2015 - 11:00 AM

I believe that the MRG is 600 pph. Not certain though.

#19 jaytrem

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Posted 11 May 2015 - 01:15 PM

View Postskierdude9450, on 11 May 2015 - 09:25 AM, said:

Lowest is probably the Mt. Rainier Gondola at Crystal. I'm not sure what the capacity is exactly, but it must be less than 1,000 p/h.


How about Sugarbowl (though not an uphill gondola)? With Lusten's being replaced, is that the last of the "old-time" gondolas?

#20 snoloco

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Posted 11 May 2015 - 01:38 PM

I think the Pony Express at Steamboat is 1,200 pph. It has similar chair spacing as the Bretton Woods lift above and the load interval in one of Donald's video's was 12 seconds.





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