November Update from Alta's GM
November brings an influx of people and increase of activity in Alta as we gear up and prepare for the ski season.
Friendships are renewed, summer experiences are shared, policies, procedures and practices are reviewed, lifts and equipment that has been idle during the summer months is fired up tested and fine-tuned, weather forecasts are watched with renewed interest and dreams of skiing the “Greatest Snow on Earth” TM come with more frequency. We currently have a base of 20” of snow at mid-mountain, with snow forecasted mid-week.
Based upon the results of the most recent storm and the weather forecast for the next 10 days, Alta’s target opening date has been adjusted to December 1, conditions permitting. Additional updates regarding an opening date will be posted on our Snow Report page on alta.com.
Our major project this summer was the replacement of two fixed grip lifts, Supreme and Cecret, with a new detachable quad lift. To minimize impact, we initially proposed to use the existing Supreme and Cecret lift lines and an angle station to replace these lifts with one lift. During the NEPA scoping process it was noted that the angle station would be in the Albion Fen, a wetland area. Consequently, we proposed an alternate alignment that moved the bend in the lift out of the wetland area and placed it near the current the Supreme base terminal. This alternative resulted six hundred feet of new lift line and excavation of an area South of Alf’s Restaurant for the new base terminal.
Most of the summer was spent removing the old Cecret and Supreme lifts, excavating the top and bottom terminal sites and pouring tower and terminal footings.
Helicopters were used to remove the parts of the old Cecret and Supreme lifts, as well as to fly in concrete, towers and cross arms for the new lift.
The new lift alignment allowed the manufacturer, Leitner-Poma, to make the 8.1-degree bend using canted sheaves rather than an angle station further minimizing the impact of the new lift upon the environment.
The new Supreme lift is 5,030 feet long with a 1,200-foot vertical rise with a ride time of just under six minutes to the top. The top terminal is in same location as the previous top terminal.
The Alta Environmental Center assisted us in minimizing the impact of this project and mitigating its environmental impact. Construction of the new lift did impact on some wetland areas, but I am pleased to report that through the Alta Environmental Center our mitigation plan will create many times more wetland than was impacted. Review our just published 2017 Sustainability Report for more information about the environmental mitigation involved in this project. Leitner-Poma is finishing their work on the new lift which we anticipate will be ready for skiing by December 1, conditions permitting. We look forward to sharing this new lift with you!
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