Popular chair is being removed and replaced with two new lifts to cut down ride time


Josh Wells

The location of the two new lifts, the Cedar Express and the Colburn Triple.

Addi House, Lifestyles Editor

Many know the infamous Snow Ghost or Chair 6 ski lift that takes you over 80 feet drops all in about 16 minutes total to finally reach the top of the North Bowl. While Snow Ghost has been in use for the past 47 years, all skiers and snowboarders can say goodbye to this chair after the 2018-19 winter season ends.

Once the snow finally melts off the top of Schweitzer Mountain Resort in the summer of 2019, work will begin to remove the old Chair 6 and install two new chairs in its place.

The lower chair, titled the Cedar Express will load where Kaniksu meets the Snowghost Trail, beginning lower than the original chair. This high speed quad will unload at the midpoint of the old chair, giving access to all of the blue square terrain to the right of the chair.

“Our business has been growing pretty consistently over the last 8 to 10 years, today my opinion is we don’t have quite enough lift capacity especially in the North Bowl,” President and CEO Tom Chasse said.

The next new chair, a high speed triple named  Colburn Triple, will load skiers and boarders where Will’s Run Out meets Vagabond, and will bring riders to the top of the North Bowl.

Although getting from bottom to top now requires two separate chair rides, the total travel time is estimated to be reduced by three minutes, being much more efficient than Snow Ghost was.

Within the last decade, Schweitzer has seen an increase in yearly visits from 200,000 to 250,000 and counting. Chasse states that the removal of the slow, old Chair 6 is what is needed in order to decrease lift lines and accommodate more visitors.

“I think in the first year we’ll increase our skier visits between five and ten thousand visits because of the new lifts,” Chasse said.