Have a question?
Spot an issue?

We want to hear from you. Our team monitors and inspects our lifts all year long to ensure everything is in top shape, but If you ever see or hear anything of concern while you're on the mountain, or if you just have a question for us, click the button above and let us know. 

Timberline Closed [Buffering]

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

If you were skiing or riding at Sugarloaf today, you may have noticed that Timberline was closed for the afternoon – but there was no wind. So why did the lift close? The simple answer will be pretty familiar to anyone who owns a smartphone – the lift needs a software update.

Tell 'em Steve Jobs:  

To operate, ski lifts send an electric current through a 'drive' that transfers a signal to the electric motor (which runs the lift) to either start, stop, accelerate, decelerate, etc. The drive is like the operating system on your phone – it's the brains of the operation. The drive in each lift has software unique to that lift, which is contained in something called the "central processing touchscreen." The touchscreen on Timberline failed today, which means the lift is without its operating system until we can install a new one.     

To continue the smartphone analogy, this would be like trying to operate your iPhone with no touchscreen. The power is there; the phone is there; but there's nothing that allows you to connect one with the other. So until we are able to update Timberline's operating system, the lift will remain closed.  

And unfortunately for ski lifts, a new operating system isn't as easily downloaded from the cloud as it is for your phone. 

Our lift mechanics worked with Timberline's drive system manufacturer this afternoon to install the lift's operating system onto a new touchscreen component – which is now on its way to Sugarloaf. Once we receive the component, our mechanics will have to install it and perform a few system checks before we reopen the lift. This most likely won't happen tomorrow, but we expect to have it back up and running by the weekend. In the meantime, we will offer cat service to the summit, conditions permitting, beginning at 10am.  

We'll keep you posted with the latest updates here