Big Tupper: Lift 3 Approved

On Tuesday, inspectors from the New York State Department of Labor performed required load tests on Big Tupper’s Lift 3. The lift, crucial to Big Tupper’s operation this winter, passed every test performed.

Big Tupper Ski Lift 3

To load test the uphill side, inspectors placed 20 x 20 x 20-inch cardboard boxes on each chair, and fit each box with a plastic liner. The boxes were then filled with water. The volume of water in two boxes weighs approximately 400 pounds to simulate the weight of two people. With each container filled, the lift was operated through a full circuit. Hard stops were used to test cable strength and braking distance.

When the containers are originally set in the chairs, a small hole is cut in the cardboard. This exposes a small section of the plastic liner. When the testing is done, an inspector at the summit punctures the liner, and by the time the chairs reach the base, the containers are empty.

The system was also tested and passed for rollback and tower condensation cracks. As reported in our earlier piece on The Summit of Big Tupper, the unloading station’s concrete and steel is structurally sound, but many wooden sections needed repair.

Wayne Davison of D&D Artisans donated the carpentry required to shore up the wooden components of the lift, adding plywood reinforcement to the decks and replacing hand rails. The repairs are durable, but also temporary. There are plans to completely renovate the loading and unloading stations in the near future.

There was more good news for Big Tupper today — Lift 2 has also been certified for operation. Cliff Levers, Big Tupper’s Lift Manager, is excited: “This brings almost all of our most challenging terrain into play. Lake Ontario is running warm this year and we’re ready for snow.”

Photos courtesy of Cliff Levers / Big Tupper

6 comments on “Big Tupper: Lift 3 Approved

  1. AWESOME, can’t wait to ski Big Tupper this season. Thank you Wayne, and everyone else who has volunteered so much time and effort on this project.

  2. I’m really looking forward to Big Tupper this season too.

    I have a question about something I read a while back — that when a ski lift doesn’t operate for three straight years as part of a functioning ski area, NYS can condemn it. Obviously, that isn’t the case given that BT has been on hiatus for a least ten years and has brought its chairs back to life. Harv, next time you speak to Cliff, could you ask him about the state’s regulations on lifts that haven’t been operating for several years?

  3. The diesel motor runs and sounds great!! The gas backup motor is operable, carpenters made the off loading ramp safe.. the floor and benches have been painted downstairs in the lodge along with the maintenance garage, portions of the exterior of the lodge, chairs on lift 2 and the ranger cabin.Trails have been cleared and mowed. Come on Mother nature send us some serious snow!!

  4. They have done an amazing job getting that lift going again. From what I remember though it was kind of scary, needed earplugs standing in line waiting to load. A number of times it quit for long periods of time, wished I’d had a rope with me to bail. Lets hope mother nature provides for us this winter.

  5. OMG.. I haven’t skied chair 3 in years… will be bringing the family for a week this year… you guys rock !!!!

  6. Absolutely Awesome! I never thought I’d ever have the chance to ride Chair 3 again. Always loved to hear the roar of that old diesel coming down from Chair 1…You knew a good day was in store when the old chugger was runnin’!!! Unbelievable job ARISE has done over the past 2 years! Shows what COMMUNITY can do! Wow….

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