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Breckenridge starts upgrade of Colorado SuperChair

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Breckenridge Resort in Colorado is working on an upgrade of the Colorado SuperChair from a quad express to a six-passenger express chairlift. On July 7, new lift towers were brought in by helicopter. The project on Peak 8 is expected to be complete by the ski resort’s scheduled opening day of Nov. 7.

The installation of 20 new lift towers took about six hours. The K-MAX helicopter used for the lift-tower transport can lift more than 6,000 pounds of payload.

The Colorado SuperChair was first installed in 1986 as a high-speed quad. Replacement quad chairs added in 2012 will be moved to the Beaver Run SuperChair on Peak 9.

With a vertical rise of 1,325 feet, the Colorado SuperChair serves as the main artery on Peak 8, an area with a variety of terrain options. Along with a section of black-diamond runs, the terrain includes the popular Springmeier run, an intermediate run that turns into a beginner trail about halfway down the descent. The bottom terminal of the lift is found near One Ski Hill Place, a luxury lodging facility opened in 2010.

The upgrade from a quad chair to a six-passenger lift will increase the capacity of the Colorado SuperChair by 30 percent. Along with nearby Vail Mountain, Breckenridge Resort ranks among the most popular U.S. resorts in terms of skier visits. Also factoring in last year’s terrain expansion on Peak 6, the lift improvement should help handle the crowds at the Summit County resort.

The new Colorado SuperChair will be the fourth six-passenger lift at Breckenridge. The other three are the QuickSilver SuperChair on Peak 9, Independence SuperChair on Peak 7 and the Kensho SuperChair that was added as part of the Peak 6 expansion. Following the Colorado SuperChair’s upgrade from a quad, the resort will still have eight other high-speed quad lifts. Breckenridge has 2,908 skiable acres of terrain.