Vail Mountain is installing two new lifts for the 2013-2014 ski season: a new high-speed six-passenger lift that will replace the existing Mountaintop Express Lift (#4) from Mid-Vail to the Patrol HQ area, and a new Gopher Hill Lift (#12).
The new Mountaintop Express lift is expected to increase capacity by 33 percent, shuttling 3,600 people per hour up the lift, which is the same capacity as Vail’s Gondola One, which opened last season. The existing Mountaintop Express Lift (#4) was installed in 1985 and is one of the most frequently used lifts on Vail Mountain, providing access to Patrol Headquarters and a number of surrounding areas including the Back Bowls and Blue Sky Basin.
The Gopher Hill Lift (#12) in Golden Peak – a fixed-grip double Riblet chairlift installed in 1974 – will be replaced by the former Rose Bowl lift (#4) from Beaver Creek, which was removed in the spring of 2011. The fixed-grip triple Doppelmayr lift will increase capacity by 50 percent over the existing Gopher Hill Lift (#12), which primarily provides access to the Golden Peak area for beginners as well as access to Vail Village. The triple lift will also allow for twice the capacity of three- to six-year-old skiers and boarders, who are required to ride the lift with an adult.
Also coming up this season at Vail Mountain is the 32nd Burton U.S. Open Snowboarding Championships presented by MINI, March 5-8.
The Burton US Open, which first took place in 1982, is the longest-running snowboarding competition in the world and draws the best riders to compete for a coveted US Open title. Returning to Vail in March of 2014, the US Open will be the first major snowboarding competition following the Winter Olympics in Sochi.
During the 2014 US Open, visitors to Vail can watch world-class, Olympic-level slopestyle and halfpipe snowboarding competitions in Golden Peak by day, as well as a free concert series with entertainment in Vail Village by night. For more information and the latest updates, go to www.vail.com/burton or www.burton.com/uso.