At a press conference today in the Hope Lake Lodge, the new owners of Greek Peak announced that the resort is getting a fixed-grip quad lift with conveyor loading to replace its frontside lift 1A. The $2 million Doppelmayr is to be installed by next winter on an ambitious schedule, John Meier and Marc Stemerman announced at press conference at the resort’s Hope Lake Lodge. It represents the bulk of $3 million in improvements they plan for next season.
Other upgrades include improvements to snowmaking plumbing along the Illiad trail mainly to fix leaks; a new grooming machine; a new bar, outdoor deck and pizza oven at Orion’s Pub, the main tavern in the resort’s base lodge; and a gear tuning center with state-of-the-art equipment in conjunction with a new rental fleet of skis and snowboards from Rossignol.
More is coming, said Stemerman and Meier, but they want to be sure to not overextend their investments. They bought the resort out of bankruptcy court reorganization proceedings in April for $7.6 million, after previous owner Peak Resorts’ lender failed, and are financing the improvements as they are the purchase.
The new Doppelmayr’s uphill capacity is rated up to 2,400 passengers per hour, but the plan is to remove about a quarter of the chairs to space out loading while running the lift faster, Meier said. Chairs could be added back later.
The model’s conveyor loading is expected to help avoid the numerous stops that plague 1A, while also reducing lift lines, Meier and Stemerman believe. It’ll be the main daily lift, with 1 fired up as needed. The lift entry will have automated gates to further help load.
RFID ticketing was looked at and can’t be ruled out, but it’s too expensive right now, according to Wes Kryger, who is managing the ski resort proper.
No new terrain is expected for next winter, but Stemerman and Meier have expressed interest in opening up new glades and are consulting with Greek Peak woods aficionados on where that might happen, they said. They also hope to upgrade the terrain park, acknowledging riders’ frustrations with offerings up to now.
There’s not likely to be any major change in snowmaking for this coming year, but Kryger said a consultant is being asked for an update on a plan developed for Greek Peak several years ago, primarily to boost efficiency. Upgrades to aging equipment appear to be the immediate priority, he indicated.
Off the snow, the Orion’s upgrade will come with an outdoor deck that will extend over the stream between the lodge and lifts, according to Stemerman. They also plugged Hope Lake Lodge, saying time-share units are discounted half-off their original price, and occupancy rates of units managed for hotel customers have turned up toward buyers’ break-even point.
As for summer activities, Stemerman and Meier said lift-served mountain biking might be in the works down the road, but meanwhile they’re boosting the all-season Adventure Center with laser tag, outdoor movies and a rock-climbing wall.