Vail Resorts on Tuesday began the process of removing the old fixed-grip triple chairlift No. 17, called Sun Up Lift, in order replace it with a new high-speed quad detachable lift that will be dubbed Sun Up Express (No. 9) this coming ski season.
The lift replacement, Vail’s ninth in the last decade, is expected to help with the west-to-east flow of skiers every morning known as the “Elk Migration” because many of the snow riders are heading toward Two Elk and eventually Blue Sky Basin. The new lift is located in Vail’s Sun Up Bowl on the back side of the sprawling ski mountain.
Here’s the full press release from Vail Resorts on the new Sun Up Express lift:
Vail Mountain Begins Replacement of Sun Up Express lift
While summer is in full force and Epic Discovery, Vail’s new on-mountain summer experience, is fully operational, Vail Mountain is looking toward winter and the approaching 2016-2017 ski and snowboard season.
With the end of the annual elk-calving closure on portions of Vail Mountain on July 1, the resort has begun construction to replace the Sun Up Lift (#17) with a new high-speed quad chairlift call Sun Up Express.
The new Sun Up Express, which will be designated lift #9 in its new incarnation, will reduce wait times, improve skier and snowboarder circulation, and marks the ninth chair replacement in the last 10 years at Vail, a period that also saw the addition of The 10th restaurant and major summer guest improvements. It also makes all of the major lifts at Vail high-speed.
“The new Sun Up Express will dramatically improve how our guests are able to move across Vail’s legendary Back Bowls, especially on powder mornings as they head toward the terrain of the China Bowl complex and Blue Sky Basin,” said Chris Jarnot, Vail’s chief operating officer and executive vice president.
“The 65% increase in capacity will also take pressure off of the High Noon Express (#5) with more guests using the new lift rather than cycling back to the bottom of the bowls.”
The new Sun Up Express (#9) provides access to advanced terrain in Sun Up Bowl and disperses skiers and snowboarders to other terrain in Vail’s legendary Back Bowls.
Vail Mountain is scheduled to open for the 2016-2017 ski and snowboard season on Friday, Nov. 18, 2016.
For more information about Vail Mountain visit www.vail.com, stop by the Mountain Information Center, or call (970) SKI-VAIL (754-8245).