We have been tirelessly working over the last few months to get everything ready for ETAR. Unfortunately the triple chairlift is definitely not going to be a viable option for use this year because a tower shifted (due to frost heaving) over the past winter. Once we were made aware of that issue, we began working on using the double chairlift as another option to get people to the top of the mountain, but have concerns with that lift as well. The most important concern is that the double is a pretty fast lift, too fast to get people off the lift safely at the top. Although there are simple solutions to slow it down, between engineering costs and Labor and Industry requirements to make these changes, we do not think we will be able to get approval and actually complete the project within the time we have remaining before the shoot. The state is working towards getting that lift inspected and we will know more by the end of the week.
In the meantime, we’ve been busy hiking the mountains trying to figure out how we might change up and add to our courses, if we cannot easily get people to the top of the mountain. One complaint over the years on the mountain courses is that they are too steep and slippery. Here is the good news. If we have to change the courses, we are really excited to have found a couple of great options. The bulk of these (new) courses would run on old roads that have a gentle grade to them. There will NOT be a need to hike up the entire mountain or over-exert yourself getting up (or down) these new courses. The more we looked at these options the more excited we got. This opens up a lot of new territory that will enable us to surprise you with exciting new shot opportunities. We have also changed around the Nine Mile course to let it run out into the valley further than it did in the past and have eliminated the steep uphill at the end, which will make that course almost completely level.
Although it will be unfortunate to not have the chairlift at ETAR, we are extremely excited to have planned these new courses, which we are confident will be exciting additions to our summer festival. We have lots more exciting updates that we will continue to share with you as the weeks get closer to our favorite summer event. We can’t wait to see you all in 18 days!!!