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Discussion in 'Thredbo' started by climberman, Sep 18, 2013.
The answer was yes. All of this now is reliant on $$$ from this season I imagine.
I think this is a bit unfair. Thredbo have some great management and putting Stu in the drivers seat is a great move. Thredbo has a parent company who like to be involved (which is both good and bad) and this causes some issues, as a ski resort is a totally different proposition to hotels and picture theatres. Operationally, they are quite different and that can affect the decision making, timelines, systems etc. It is what it is.
Alterra preferably if it has to go to is big American corporate, although Thredbo and Perisher on one would be nice.
I'm not sure the ACCC would give that one the tick of approval.
IIRC, when Perisher took over Blue Cow the ACCC had a look at it. They concluded that the relevant market was not as narrow as ski resorts but resorts as a whole. That meant that the effect of the takeover was measured against every holiday destination in the country and, on that basis, was minimal so not anti-competitive.
Yep have to agree with that. As someone who worked in Thredbo throughout the 90's, seeing the gradual takeover over of village outlets by K T with questionable people at the the time, who were just ok when just in a single business role but then became overarching (umgraham), the last few years have been a bit more positive and proactive IMO.
interesting that the two people who reckon things are going pretty well seem to know the personalities in the village by first name.
place could do with a shakeup.
village is bland, prices are high and businesses not customer focused. an example, the bakery closes before the lifts close, but pub doesnt start serving food until 90 minutes later.
lift operations - dont think ive skiied more than a few days at thredbo without a major lift breaking down.
snowmaking - ditto. has fallen well behind perisher in coverage and quality in recent years.
just coming from someone without any more interest in the place than a lodge membership.
I think most people know the name of the CEO. I am unsure if it means they are buddies.
I actually think that Thredbo is on the right track although not as fast as we would like. I was sceptical about the gondola but I have been proven wrong about that as it has been a great success. The MTB tracks have proven to be great investments.
I actually think that the grooming has been pretty good considering how little snow there has been. Should the snowmaking pipes have been replaced before they blew, I do not know. I tend to think that pipes are not replaced until they break.
I look at the terrible year that the businesses in Thredbo have had and I am grateful that they have survived.
I agree on the gondola - much better than I thought. Add in the Snowgums 6 pack (when it happens) and the snowmaking on dream run and things are much improved. The real test of the on mountain experience though will be July school holidays without COVID restrictions.
Off mountain though, and the same qualification for on mountain restaurants, I think the corporatisation of the independent businesses is a strong on balance negative. Yes there is a more predictable experience. There are fewer low points. But the high points are a little less high, and at least as importantly there are fewer local characters, who always added to the vibrancy of the place.
I think the resort would be well placed to find a way to re lease a lot of the businesses to independent operators.
This is the really important part - as someone who visits year round and has for decades, it's felt like Thredbo (and Event) management have been asleep at the wheel as they've raked in a cheeky $220m+ in profit between 2005-2019, while simultaneously investing very little in on or off mountain improvements.
The gondola is a huge step forward, but i have to wonder why it didn't happen 2 decades ago! The Merritts double was a near on 60 year old rusting shit heap with a chain link safety device that should have been sent to chairlift heaven (sorry @Bogong !) in the early noughties.
It's also been 10 years since Ramshead chair was washed away without anything being done to replace it. Kossie chair regularly breaks down, Gunbarrel has now dropped chairs twice and 99% of the snowmaking system has been down during what would normally be its peak usage time
It's not just one persons fault, there's been a succession of poor leaders. The bushfires and Covid have just highlighted it
heard its happened far more than twice.
Oh I agree with almost all of that. Personally I love slow, rusty, geriatric ski lifts. (I swooned when I finally got to ride Ramshead on about my 8th visit to Thredbo), but that's just a personal fetish of mine.
But 99% of the world wants rather boring ski lifts that are modern, fast, safe and comfortable. Thredbo had a 26 year break from building new lifts, so they don't provide many of the sort of lifts the public likes.
I always hitched a ride on the old double for the memories. Nothing like those little saftey chains. They're all gone now, no more original Mt P double chairs, Merrits, Ramshead or Crackenback Double.
i think this is a pretty fair summary but I don’t thinks it’s reflective of local management but the board of directors. I would argue the change in board has seen a positive shift.
However my one caveat on the board is they clearly saw an opportunity to price tickets this Year to prop up the business. Thredbo can’t continue to be a cash cow they need to continue to put back in.
I always took at least one ride on that thing each season. Usually a download on a nice sunny afternoon. It was a lovely trip. I'm very glad to hear the gondy is a huge success though.
Actually 6 chairs. Two at the second last tower. The last tower head has now been elevated an extra 400mm with a cable alignment change. And four chairs entering top terminal. Have you noticed KT don't advertise this or blown snowmaking for that matter...
Snowmaking is broken.
If a further 4 chairs have dropped from that lift they’ve kept it very very quiet. And they will NEED to put a new lift in for next season.
If they were going to put a new lift in next summer, we would know about it by now.
NSW has a notoriously cumbersome, byzantine and complex planning process that takes a very long time (and a LOT of money) for an application to be granted to even just pick a flower, to build a ski lift the process is even worse.
Sorry that was a reverse name drop; ie glad that anyone who may have gone by certain name is no longer there
It wouldn't surprise me if Thredbo had lost interest in winter. Summer is just as busy now without all the costs of winter. 1 lift, no grooming, no snowmaking, no ski patrol, no buses, no climate change concerns. Sure, they will keep doing winter, but it may not be their core business and will be treated as such. Just a theory.
summer is only just breaking even, winter generates net profit of about $20+ mil! Don’t get me wrong I think summer has added value, but it’s a long way off replacing winter
If they're now focusing on summer as you suggest they may have, lift replacements are still needed equally as much, if not more.
-Kosi is the only summer lift on the Crackenback side. It goes down for any reason (wind, breakdown, etc), the Snowgums can't open as a backup bc it can't take bikes. The Kosi is also already at capacity in summer.
-Gunbarrel is necessary for laps of Ricochet and Lower All-Mountain. It's also the lift that takes the queues off the Kosi. If Gunbarrel goes down, the Kosi is overloaded. Gunbarrel is also low capacity in summer bc of its age, it only takes one bike and rider per chair.
-Eagle's Nest is also at capacity in summer, hence the desire to open Merritts in summer. The Gondola makes that possible.
KT can't replace winter with summer. I think the success of summer will only mean that new lifts will have considerations for summer in their design, not that new lifts will be determined by what summer needs. But even if summer became the dominant season, we'd still likely see the same upgrades.
I only know about the incidents in 2016 and 2019. When did the other 4 happen?
Naa not really. The Alpine SEPP clarifies and streamlines a lot of stuff. The DA for the Merrits Gondola would have been $20K tops, prolly more like $10K to $15K. There wasn't much in it.
Less eateries, less lessons, less equipment hire, less accomodation sales and management. Summer is great and busy when it’s on, but it’s 8 months not 4 months. And it has a lot of time not on in that 8 months. A Tuesday in February or May can be preeeettttty quiet.
I have used SG with bikes a few times. A mate nearly taco'd both wheels when he forgot to lift for the first station....before the holders, you had to hold your bike on Kosi.
So, what's that designed to achieve? I know there was an expectation that the bend in the cable as it went over the sheave train above the top two towers meant the grip was compromised somewhat. Are they trying to make the bend less severe at that point?
Well duh, of course KT don't advertise it. Plenty of witnesses for news to get out though. First I've ever heard of 6 chairs. I'm not saying it didn't happen. But I am saying "I heard it on the internet"...
I know of at least one instance of a chair being blown sideways as it went into the top station hence the damage that used to be visible there. The chair stayed on.
Obviously that was due to KT and had nothing to do with the wind....
I don't like to kick Thredbo but only the resort can make the decisions around the infrastructure they choose to put in to meet the conditions the hill dishes out.
This is true.
And plenty of Japanese resorts have wind breaks at certain exposure points to protect their gondolas or hooded chairs - if there is one, or two, areas of concern for freak winds surely it would be a better solution to erect a wind barrier rather than have to replace the whole lift or run it only in perfect conditions.
Like chair 23 at mammoth https://skiliftblog.files.wordpress.com/2017/04/img_3150.jpg
They have announced the busted snowmaking
When it broke it was on their social media
When the fix failed it was on their social media and emailed
When the Vail guns arrived it was on their social media and email.
How many times does one expect them to go on about the broken equipment and rectification.
Was it? I never saw an email from Thredbo or a post on their socials.
yeah I got emails and social posts
*** bites tongue ***
On developments, can I just say a couple of weeks ago I skied and throughly enjoyed Dream Run this year in marginal conditions- at the time snow working had only just broken, but with everything it had laid down, and the improved exit, I had a blast. Under usual conditions it would have been toast without SM.
it is my young blokes favourite run ATM
Ha! Look at all the scratches at the entrance. That would get awkward. Keep your tips up, dammit!
There are easier ways of protecting chairs from wind. This Doppelmayr detachable quad at Mt Bachelor (which uses the same terminals and grips as the Kosi and Cruiser) has a wind barrier to prevent chairs from swinging.
On a lift like the Gunbarrel or an extended Snowgums, something like this could work.
Im sure the are planning/operational reasons that would prevent thisl but I've often wondered in Oz about integrated top stations for major lifts ie lift hut, patrol hut, cafe/restaurant and amenities with a site layout that places them all to the NW of the lift top station. Similar to eagles Nest but with the buildings placement directly blocking prevailing wind direction.
I'm sure its possible. In Thredbo it can't happen because of space. The two lifts with buildings at the top (Kosi and Snowgums) don't have space for buildings NW. If they ever built buildings at the top of the Cruiser or Gunbarrel, there also wouldn't be space.