Steamboat Ski Area Update for 2017
Steamboat continues to roll out the red carpet for its guests, with resort improvements piling up like its 352 inches of annual snowfall.
Last year the resort introduced hands-free, RFID (radio-frequency identification) ticket technology, decreasing lift line time and making purchase and handling easier. All lift tickets and season passes are now available on QuickTraxTM cards embedded with an RFID chip for hands-free, gate-operated lift access. “It moves guests faster and more efficiently, allowing more time for carving up Steamboat’s Champagne powder,” says Intrawest’s Matt Bowers.
The resort also increased its night skiing operations to Thursdays through Mondays; unveiled the Steven’s Family Alpine Training and Competition venue, a dedicated race run in partnership with the Steamboat Springs Winter Sports Club; and expanded several of its award-winning restaurants.
This year the improvements continue to pile up, including everything from base area enhancements and new chairlifts to additional biking trails, a mountain coaster and more. Following is a peak at what you’ll see this season:
A new Doppelmayr high-speed, detachable quad chairlift replaces the current Elkhead fixed-grip chairlift in Priest Creek, reducing the ride time by more than half (new time: less than three minutes). The increased speed will lessen lines at the popular egress lift, especially at lunchtime and the end of the day. The new lift will also feature a child-friendly restraint system on each chair.
Mountain Activities Mountain Coaster: Steamboat is installing a new year-round mountain coaster, a gravity-driven sled running on a tubular stainless-steel rail system where riders control their speed through a state-of-the-art braking system. Housed near the Christie Peak Express lift, the ride will descend 500 vertical feet over its 3,500-foot track, and rise as much as 40 feet above the ground with dips, waves, turns and 360-degree circles.
Mini Golf: The resort is also planning to build an 18-hole mini-golf course for summer 2017, also located near the base of the Christie Peak Express and Preview chairlifts. The multi-level course will incorporate such local landmarks as the iconic Steamboat Barn, Fish Creek Falls, Nordic ski jumps and Rabbit Ears.
New Marmot Store: The resort has partnered with Marmot on a new 1,800-square-foot concept store located on the corner of 7th Street and Lincoln Avenue downtown. The store will focus on Marmot outerwear, apparel and accessories.
Grooming/snowmaking: Two new, 12-ton Prinoth Beasts join Steamboat’s grooming fleet this year, machines providing 40 percent better performance than other groomers. The resort’s 21-machine grooming fleet re-surfaces 600 acres nightly. Even with 352 inches of annual snowfall, Steamboat also continues to upgrade its snowmaking system. Over the past eight seasons, the resort has installed 20 miles of snowmaking piping, as well as new pumps and motors to enhance efficiency.
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