Solitude announces over $16 million in capital improvements
(BIG COTTONWOOD CANYON, UT) — Four transformative off-season projects are set to commence at Solitude Mountain Resort this summer. Eagle Express will be upgraded to a high-speed 6-person chairlift. Improvements to Solitude’s snowmaking infrastructure will yield increased efficiency and reliability. Three Wyssen towers will be installed in Honeycomb Canyon to assist with avalanche mitigation efforts on Fantasy Ridge. Gravity Logic will be completing new downhill mountain bike trails accessed from Moonbeam Express.
Installed in 1989, Eagle Express was the first high-speed detachable chairlift installed in Utah. In addition to shortened wait times on busy days, the increased uphill capacity of the new 6-person chairlift is expected to decrease congestion elsewhere on the mountain. Construction on the Doppelmayr lift will begin this spring, and the lift is expected to be operational by mid-December 2023.
Upgraded equipment will allow the resort to continue making snow on open runs that previously needed to remain closed during snowmaking operations. These improvements to Solitude’s snowmaking infrastructure will also create a more efficient and sustainable operation.
“Although we’re coming off a winter with exceptional snowfall, these improvements to our snowmaking system will be crucial as we work to open terrain early in the season and create a base that serves as our snowpack’s foundation when that natural snow comes,” says Amber L. Broadaway, Solitude’s President and COO.
Three new Wyssen tower remote avalanche control systems (RACS) will be installed across Fantasy Ridge. These installations will allow Solitude’s avalanche mitigation team to detonate explosives remotely in terrain that currently requires personnel to manually deploy hand charges. With these detonations, crews will be able to move through the avalanche terrain quicker, allowing terrain to be opened sooner.
This summer, Gravity Logic will complete new downhill mountain bike trails that will be accessed via Moonbeam Express. Flagging began last season with construction set to begin this spring, conditions permitting. These flow trails will vary in difficulty levels with jump lines on the advanced trails. The new trails are expected to open mid-summer, 2023. Winter Park Resort’s Trestle bike park and Deer Valley Resort’s bike park were also designed by Gravity Logic.
Additional off-season improvements include modest renovations to The Inn at Solitude and signature restaurants Honeycomb Grill and St. Bernard’s. Road access to Roundhouse, Solitude’s on-mountain wedding venue, will also be improved. In addition, music and PA systems will be installed at our three main lodges.
Finally, potential changes to Solitude’s paid parking policy, including a reservation system, are being considered. Any adjustments will be communicated this summer.
About Solitude Mountain Resort
Located in Big Cottonwood Canyon, just 30 miles from Salt Lake City International Airport, Solitude is a playground of discovery in the heart of Utah’s famed Wasatch Mountains. It offers eight chairlifts, 82 runs, and 500 annual inches of snow spread over 1,200 acres with 20 km of groomed Nordic track and 10 km of snowshoe trails. Home to the legendary Honeycomb Canyon and locals’ best-kept secrets, Solitude reveals more fun and challenging lines with every day you choose to explore. Eleven bars and restaurants offer unique chef-driven cuisine, and slopeside lodging options set the stage for mountain memories. In summer, Solitude beckons to locals and travelers alike with lift-served mountain biking, hiking, dining, and a renowned 18-hole mountainside disc golf course. Solitude is owned by Alterra Mountain Company and offers unlimited access to Ikon Pass holders.