Gondola to Replace Merritts

Discussion in 'Thredbo' started by Bluebird Snowbird, Feb 25, 2018.

  1. Legs Akimbo

    Legs Akimbo Grumblebum
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    Why cycle? I have long fantasised about building a trolley and putting a set of sails on it. Cooma to Bredbo under kite in a big southerly.
     
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  2. Bogong

    Bogong Part of the Furniture
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    You could build your own chairlift like a bloke near Albury did. It helps that he used to work at Falls Creek and that he owns a construction / engineering firm. But the hill behind his house now boasts a quad chair with six intermediate towers, solely for the amusement of himself and his friends.
    This picture is a couple of years old, it is now complete and goes much further up the hill.
     
  3. climberman

    climberman CloudRide1000 Legend
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    That’s fkn classic

    @Bogong
     
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  4. zac150

    zac150 One of Us
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    @telecrag our first step to a telemark only resort......
     
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  5. zac150

    zac150 One of Us
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    I heard whispers this is the plan again.

    I’d be keen to grab one, but I think the chairs with the ambulance seats will go for a little more.
     
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  6. sastrugi

    sastrugi Part of the Furniture
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    Don't panic, there are plenty of them!
     
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  7. MisterMxyzptlk

    MisterMxyzptlk Old n' Crusty
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    one metre rule in play?
     
  8. Bogong

    Bogong Part of the Furniture
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    You can buy small railway profile wheels from hobby shops on the internet, then whack them onto a metal frame and you have a rail trolley.

    Someone allegedly did this about ten years ago, attached a lawn mower engine and used the tram line along the Bogong Creek Aqueduct to ferry skis, stores and people to Mt Bogong for a 10 day ski trip. Not sure if the story is true or not, but the idea sounds like fun.
    .

    [​IMG]
     
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  9. linked_recoveries

    linked_recoveries One of Us

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    Douse sails (and mast) for any road bridges, and hope you have enough momentum to reach clear sky on the other side.
     
  10. Legs Akimbo

    Legs Akimbo Grumblebum
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    There are only a couple of bridges over the line. Mostly level crossings. The big problems would be the three old level crossings on the Monaro Hwy that have been removed and the road straightened, any farm access roads where the farmer has filled in the tracks to smooth his access and anywhere that the tracks have mysteriously and magically converted themselves to cattle grids.
     
  11. linked_recoveries

    linked_recoveries One of Us

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    I'm guessing a gaff rigged setup would help duck under the bridges.



    And depending on the design you may not even need to drop the mast.



    Unless you go the full Monty - a gaff rigged schooner with a jib flying off a bowsprit.

     
    #711 linked_recoveries, Feb 8, 2019
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2019
  12. MisterMxyzptlk

    MisterMxyzptlk Old n' Crusty
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    No shame in paddling when the breeze dies either

    [​IMG]
     
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  13. Camnoger

    Camnoger First Runs

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    So now the gondola is approved, what are the chances we'll see a new lift DA in the next 20 years? I'm interested to see if this momentum continues. My top picks for a new lift would be a FF fixed 6 and a snowgums express before replacing kosciuszko express and/or putting in a new ramshead chair.
     
  14. Annabuzzy

    Annabuzzy Part of the Furniture
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    Tower 10 up the old Ramshead line toward Karels is the next lift needed
     
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  15. LMB

    LMB Old but definitely not Crusty!
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    One would hope once the first roadblocks are lifted there is a known way and the balls to advance.

    Argh! Noooooo!!!
    I don’t get the fascination with putting large capacity lifts on deadset beginner runs. I know we wanna get lots of people to the top quickly but newbies fall off lifts. The more people on each lift, the more likelihood that one person will bring down more people.
    In an ideal universe I’d like to see a high speed detachable quad lift there with a nice flat run out and a staff member whose only job is to pick people up, help the super tentative and ensure the dismount ramp is always clear for the next chair.

    Kosi has reached its operational life apparently - it broke down seriously last season IIRC. And it the major lift on that side of the hill. It needs replacement urgently.

    Snowgums is a back up. I personally love it as you can get going quickly when the queue at Kosi is insane, and I don’t mind the odd slow ride up.

    A new Ramshead installation would likely open up new areas of access. That puts it ahead of Snowgums IMHO.
     
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  16. linked_recoveries

    linked_recoveries One of Us

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    The Kosci is one of Doppelmayr's busiest lifts year round, and must be hitting its use-by date soon(ish). Yes, it broke early last season - something along the lines of a voltage regulator died, being one of the few items that require a spare to be sourced and flown in from Europe - so they were running it on diesel power for a few days and had to refuel the tank around 12:30 each day. Bummer, but these things happen. Glad I wasn't in town for that.

    There's always a lot of discussion around what should be done v's what might be approved within the National Park. I expect KT can sometimes blame the bureaucracy when it simply doesn't want to make the investment - simple fallback explanation - but running a new lift really is a serious outlay. Since there was a lift along the line of the old Ramshead previously that should logically support an argument for a replacement along the same line, although the extra length to get all the way up to Karels might be in dispute. Still, my 'intel' (for what it's worth) is that approval wasn't forthcoming.

    For mine, the morning wait to upload on Kosci can get too long. People understand there's a wait when everyone wants to uplift together, but still. Starting a new chair at Tower 10 won't fix that, by the way. Thereafter, skiers who want to access that side of the hill (on the new chair) won't need to go down to Valley Terminal and that will take skiers off Milk Run, etc. Plus, there would be an opportunity for a new cafe at the base of new chair (Tower 10 flats, subject to planning permission). Lots to consider, but KT needs to stump up many millions to make it happen, and the National Parks needs to give it a rubber stamp. Seems hard to get those two happening together.
     
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  17. climberman

    climberman CloudRide1000 Legend
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    Parks haven't been the actual approval authority for quite a few years. Maybe a decade.
     
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  18. linked_recoveries

    linked_recoveries One of Us

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    Oh! Well, whichever authority they're applying to then.
     
  19. Telemark Phat

    Telemark Phat Pass the butter
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    The Department of Planning. The park is consulted, but it doesn't make the decision.
     
  20. Bogong

    Bogong Part of the Furniture
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    For about 20 years it appeared there was some sort of moratorium on building ski lifts in this country, amongst the "Big Five" ski resorts the only exceptions were the 8-pack at Perisher and at Buller which put in a new chairlift every five years or so. But even those were replacements for old lifts and there was a slight decline in the area of lifted slopes. The small resorts were almost as bad, Selwyn bought an old triple chair from Buller and I think Ben Lomond put in another surface lift, but that was about it and of course Buffalo closed down entirely in 2006.

    But things have really picked up in the last few years, a couple of new chairlifts and a T-bar extension at Perisher, a new quad at Falls Creek, Buller putting in another detachable 6-pack and now the Thredbo gondola. I wonder which major resort hasn't built anything recently? (Not looking at Hotham or anything.)

    I have no idea why the almost moribund lift companies suddenly decided to build a flock of new chairlifts, perhaps it's just that many lifts were so old they were worn out, although the vintage 58 year old Mt Perisher double chair seems to have no trouble chugging on.
     
  21. Snow Blowey

    Snow Blowey Old n' Crusty
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    Cheaper season passes and increased patronage would have helped.
     
  22. climberman

    climberman CloudRide1000 Legend
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    Bit weird now they are same cluster in DP&E
     
  23. VSG

    VSG Pool Room
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    Climate change. post gfc.
     
  24. Annabuzzy

    Annabuzzy Part of the Furniture
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    I really do hope the Tower 10 based lift along the old Ramshead line is chosen and approved. While yes it doesn’t add that third base lift which is arguably needed in peak times, if it stops a lot of people skiing to the very bottom perhaps peak lift demand will reduce. After all peak queues are from people heading up for the first time that day AND people who are in their second or third or fifth (etc) run.

    The other major benefit is pure safety. Too many people hit that last 100 metres or so around the dog leg - experts, intermediates and near enough to beginner all but skiing shoulder to shoulder with considerable differences in turn shape, speed and predictability. Reducing that log jam is just sensible.

    I heard many many years ago when KNP were the approver that they opposed the Ramshead lift on the basis some trees would need to be removed. Given it was along an existing lift line and Thredbo had just planted hundreds of new trees on Supertrail (this was around 15 years ago I had this conversation) I thought it was a ridiculous reason to oppose.

    My direct experience of National Parks people is they believe ski resorts should be kicked out of KNP, even though at least one and possibly more predated the establishment of a State or National Park. They’d find any pretext to oppose any development, in my judgement. Just as well planning decisions are no longer with them.
     
  25. Telemark Phat

    Telemark Phat Pass the butter
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  26. Annabuzzy

    Annabuzzy Part of the Furniture
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    My conversation was before then, then!!!

    I’m praying for that extra lift. Anyone who skis Thredbo knows it’s needed.
     
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  27. Slowman

    Slowman One of Us
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    I very recently had dealings with the NPWS about some tree issues at Perisher and found that they were actually really helpful and pragmatic about the possible need to remove some trees.

    As for the old Ramshead lift line I quite agree that the old Tower 10 area would be a better spot for a lift base. I hate the mad crowds on the last narrow stretch of (usually) sugary slop down to the VT - which I really only endure so as to feed my caffeine habit at the Avalanche Cafe.
     
  28. BlueHue

    BlueHue One of Us

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    From what I hear NP are far more pragmatic these days as Slowman noted.

    Totally agree about tower ten to karels lift, would prevent me going to the bottom except for lunch and post ski drinks when on that side of hill. Suppose that does not change the need to get everybody out of the village at peak times and combined with the much talked about imminent collapse of Kosci and increasing rumours around a friday flat upgrade can't help but think the much vaunted tower ten to karels lift is many years away if ever.
     
  29. BlueHue

    BlueHue One of Us

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    Oh and to add to that, Thredbo if you are listening, for me the tower ten to top of karels lift is a game changer. I prefer thredbo but for good reasons Perisher also appeals and as such my preference day to day and year to year moves back and forth. Put tower ten in and I doubt I will ever return to perisher as a season pass holder. Even better if somehow an ikon pass could be linked to a Thredbo season pass rather than a 5 or 7 days a season ticket. Alas I dont think I represent the money waving market to well.
     
  30. Telemark Phat

    Telemark Phat Pass the butter
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    Plenty of trees were cut in 92 for dream run, and then in 96 for the Cruiser Chair. Not to mention the various realestate developments in the Village through the 90's. I recon you were talking to someone who either didin't know or was using the park as an excuse.

    The Golf Course Bowl lift is a tough sell now since it will only service advanced skiers and in the 90's to 2000's it would have been an even tougher sell since skier numbers weren't growing. I think the rumour is trotted out regularly to keep some kind of buzz amongst advanced skiers (I hope I'm right, because a lift in the Golf Course would ruin it, like the Cruiser chair ruined the Powder Bowl). Thredbo's future development will continue to be for beginners and intermediates.

    I would also like to see lifting which removed the need to ski to the bottom of Thredbo, that last bit is always a chore.
     
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  31. VSG

    VSG Pool Room
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    Yes!
     
  32. VSG

    VSG Pool Room
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    Had to remind myself of what's in the pipeline, re Thredbo.



     
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  33. skull

    skull One of Us

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    it will have skiers/boarder who aren't really up to par easily accessing terrain they shouldn't really be in. On a couple of occasions I would come through the bottom of the bowl and there would be some boarders in a hell of a pickle and had over committed going into that area.
     
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  34. VSG

    VSG Pool Room
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    Pulled this off the dev applic. Trying to work out where this gondola will run.. and where the Mid station is.



     
  35. AWJ

    AWJ One of Us
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    I think I remember reading in the meritts gondola app or earlier in this thread that there are new environment laws along the lines of any loss of local ecosystem (eg through towers for chairs, or new runs etc) need to be offset 1:1 elsewhere. Bearing that in mind, I think the chances of new chairlifts in previously un-lifted areas is remote to say the least. I doubt for this reason that there will ever be a chair in the golf course bowl as there would be a significant amount of land clearing to make space for bottom and top stations, towers, electrical lines and runs. What i think will happen after the current lot of DA's are followed through with:
    • Replace Snowgums - detachable quad - Even though Kossie is getting to the end of its lifespan, I reckon they'll want to do this chair first as doing it first will allow them to have a modern, quick chair open for the summer mountain biking season when they eventually replace the current kossie. If they do Kossie first, it will mean mountain bikes on snowgums, (which may not even be capable of holding them from a weight/balance perspective). No mid stations either, and follow the exact same lift line as present. Keep top station where it is so this becomes the go to lift for intermediates wanting to do your standard super trail runs without having to deal with Eagle Way.
    • De-clutter the area between the base stations of Kossie and Snowgums and Merritts Gondola. Ie make it easy for people to choose between new Kossie and new Snowgums lifts rather than herding everyone that heads all the way down the supertrail onto Kossie. Sundance and Lovers Leap will get a lot more use if people have a quick and easy way out. Ie utilise the terrain they currently have better
    Now what I hope will happen:
    • New Ramshead - Fixed 4 or Detachable 4 or 6 seater - If it starts around where Tower 10 Mid station used to be and goes to where the old top station was, then a fixed grip 4. If it goes from the village to the old top station, then a detachable 4. Could even do a detachable 6 if they were to go right to the top of the leasehold area from the base. The critical thing is there must be opportunities for skiers to jump on at Tower 10 no matter what option they go with, it will make such a difference not having to go all the way to the bottom, particularly in the afternoon and also through Spring.
    • New beginners lift - on the golf course - Friday flat is way to crowded as is, no point increasing lifting capacity there.
    • New Accom - 2 areas I reckon are ripe - the golf course and also the old tip site. The golf course is a complete waste, does anyone use it? Every time I've walked up the river and back at various times over summer/autumn, the course is completely empty. There's sweet fa suitable land for new accoms, so this could be a good spot for it particularly if they do build a new beginners area there. Also, thredbo needs to get younger - any new large scale accom needs to include spots for staff. Where the overflow car parks (old tip) are, build new accom over the top. Could even build new accom over the top of the main day car parks although it looks like they've gone the route of adding a 2nd tier car park structure instead.
     
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  36. climberman

    climberman CloudRide1000 Legend
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    Offsets are usually substantially more than 1:1.
    But it depends on the ecosystem
    There’s relatively a lot of montane forest. Very little alpine.
     
  37. Billy_Buttons

    Billy_Buttons A Local
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    Thredbo has a fantastic opportunity to replant...looking directly at the now very open Meadows that Kasee obliterated all those decades ago.
     
  38. AWJ

    AWJ One of Us
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    Makes it even more unlikely for new runs/lifts up high then doesn't it?
     
  39. climberman

    climberman CloudRide1000 Legend
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    Makes it hard
    But most of the area is montane forest of one sort or another.
     
  40. Telemark Phat

    Telemark Phat Pass the butter
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    Perisher is much more constrained by the new Veg laws. Other than Blue Cow and a bit of Guthega Perisher is all Alpine or Sub-Alpine. There isn't much of those ecologies to offset with.
     
  41. climberman

    climberman CloudRide1000 Legend
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    Must be basically none!?
    A few Gungarlin properties perhaps.
     
  42. Telemark Phat

    Telemark Phat Pass the butter
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    I don't know the details but I know its a big issue for their enviro team.
     
  43. Legs Akimbo

    Legs Akimbo Grumblebum
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    There are alpine areas at Barrington Tops and a small pocket in Wadbilliga NP (or somewhere around there), but basically bugger none. I doubt that any are in private hands.
     
  44. climberman

    climberman CloudRide1000 Legend
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    Gungarlin river catchment / Snowy Plains would be the only area I can think of. Bits go to ~1700m.

     
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  45. climberman

    climberman CloudRide1000 Legend
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    must be interesting for CP too.
    Hard enough for state agencies.
     
  46. Telemark Phat

    Telemark Phat Pass the butter
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    Yep.

    I suspect future lobbying will result in some kind of concession to make future resort development possible.
     
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  47. Legs Akimbo

    Legs Akimbo Grumblebum
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    Damn. I must have been walking in some kind of fantasy.
     
  48. climberman

    climberman CloudRide1000 Legend
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    Nice place to walk!
     
  49. Billy_Buttons

    Billy_Buttons A Local
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    This is a great way of learning. They will continue to as well. Drop the protection and dive in the deep end, as it always was.
     
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  50. sastrugi

    sastrugi Part of the Furniture
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    No, it won't open up new areas of access, it will just make access easier for people who shouldn't be in the area anyways as they don't have the skills to ski the area. Snowgums should be the priority over the new Ramshead to take the masses to the groomed middle mountain areas quickly and efficiently.