Supply chain issues prevent yet another thing from spinning: new Colorado chairlifts

Supply issues for chairlift manufacturers, including Grand-Junction-based Poma, have stalled openings for new lifts across Colorado, North America

Jason Blevins
The Colorado Sun
The new Lenawee Express unloads skiers at summit of Arapahoe Basin Ski Area’s lift-served terrain as lift operator Shane Koenig watches, Dec. 18, 2022, near Dillon. The new six-person chairlift, built by Leitner-Poma of America, reduces ride time from 10 minute to four minutes with increased load capacity from 1,800 riders per hour to 2,400.
Hugh Carey/The Colorado Sun

The pandemic has passed. Workers are lined up. The snow has piled up early. The vacationers are primed. The path is set for resorts to enjoy a bountiful holiday ski season and set the pace for yet another banner year for the resort industry. 

But just like the inherent risks in the sport of skiing, there’s always something unexpected for the resort industry. This year, it’s chairlifts.

A global supply chain breakdown has left resorts waiting for parts and supplies for new lifts. Chairlift makers are racing to keep up with the busiest year ever for new lift installations and replacements. And early snow has challenged crews working alongside skiers to finish projects.

Only about 35 of the 60 new and replaced lifts planned for the 2022-23 ski season in North America are ready for skiers.

“The lift situation is definitely unique this year,” said Peter Landsman, the Wyoming chairlift savant who has visited every aerial tramway in the U.S.and tracks new lift construction at his


Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

As a Summit Daily News reader, you make our work possible.

Summit Daily is embarking on a multiyear project to digitize its archives going back to 1989 and make them available to the public in partnership with the Colorado Historic Newspapers Collection. The full project is expected to cost about $165,000. All donations made in 2023 will go directly toward this project.

Every contribution, no matter the size, will make a difference.