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The Ride of a Lifetime — World’s Longest Chairs

by Dan Giesin | December 10, 2019

Lift rides: Some take forever, and some only seem that way.

Having to be hauled up a mountain by a chairlift is one of the banes of our sport. You’re jonesing to hit that powder stash only you know about but the Jerrys keep causing the lift to stop or the resort has it running on creep mode.

Arrrrg.

But there is one benefit of a pokey ride: You get to a chance to ponder the mysteries of the world.

Such as: Just how long are lift rides anyway? Not in time but in distance.

Turns out, not that long, less than 1.5 miles on average.

And what are the longest chairlifts? 

Glad you asked, because the following are the 10 longest chairlifts in the world:

Slide Brook Express

This transit lift, a high-speed detachable quad (pictured above) that carries skiers and boarders to and from the Lincoln Peak and Mt. Ellen aspects of Vermont’s Sugarbush resort, is a whopping 11,012 feet (2.1 miles) long.

Chile Express

Just 20 feet shorter than Slide Brook, this detachable quad provides bottom-to-top service for all levels of skiers and boarders at Angel Fire resort in New Mexico.

Sunshine Express

Stretching 10,732 linear feet through the Colorado air, this detachable quad provides access to Teluride’s Top-A-Ten Nordic area as well as a bunch of easy blue and green cruisers.

Village Express

Rising out of Snowmass Village in Colorado, this detachable quad is 10,074 feet long and terminates at Sam’s Knob, where’s you’ll find a host of blue and some black runs.

American Flyer

This six-person, detachable bubble chair, one of the newest lifts in Colorado, is 9,907 feet long and is the main access to Copper Mountain’s blue and green terrain.

Lodge

This 9,847-foot-long detachable quad is the main lift at Montana’s uber-exclusive (read, private) resort, Yellowstone Club.

Two Creeks

Another long one at Snowmass, coming in at 9,835 feet, this high-speed quad provides access to the resort’s Elk Camp aspect.

Summit Express

Buttermilk, part of the four-resort Aspen-Snowmass complex in Colorado, is the long-time home of the Winter X Games and the world’s eighth-longest chairlift, a 9,581-foot-long detachable quad.

Burfield Quad

The only non-high-speed lift in this bunch is also the slowest: The fixed-grip four-seater at Sun Peaks resort in British Columbia takes 21 minutes to traverse its 9,510 linear feet.

Summit Express

Paralleling the Keystone gondola, this detachable quad is 9,403 feet long and is the sixth Colorado conveyance in the top-10 longest lifts list.

Miscellany

  • France has the two longest lifts in Europe, the Coulouvrier detachable six-seater at Grand Massif and the Pre St. Esprit detachable six-seater at Les Arcs. They are both 2.8 kilometers (about 9,180 feet) long.
  • The world’s longest triple chair is the 7,982-foot-long Cyclone at Sunrise Park in Arizona.
  • The world’s longest double chair the 7,260-foot long Primo at Colorado’s Sunlight Mountain Resort.

 

 

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