Final Project Update: New Orient Chairlift Now Open!

Posted December 27, 2018

Christmas came early this year!

At 8:30am on the morning of Christmas Eve, the brand new Orient quad chairlift opened to our guests and residents. The completion of the Orient project was highly anticipated by many people, especially those guests and locals with accommodation in the East Village, who were looking forward to the improved skier access it provides between Sundance, Morrisey, and the main village.

Aerial View of Orient Chairlift
An aerial view of the Orient chairlift. Photo by Kelly Funk.

The last weeks of the project were a whirlwind of activity as the final pieces of the chairlift came together. The sound of a helicopter echoing through the mountains on the morning of December 1 signalled the start of the most exciting part of the construction, drawing plenty of interested onlookers outside to watch the installation of the lift towers and marvel at the skills of those involved. By the time the rotor wash cleared two days later, the structure of the Orient was in place for all to see.

Heli Flying in Sun Peaks
Taking off from P5.
Heli Flying a Lift Tower in Sun Peaks
The parts for the towers were arranged in P5 ready for pick up. 
Heli Installing Towers for the Orient Chairlift
Each tower was constructed piece by piece from the ground up.
Worker On Top of Orient Lift Tower During Construction
Ready for the next part.

With this key bit of infrastructure finished, the remainder of the work came together quickly over the past few weeks. The communications line and haul rope were erected, the carriers were attached to the line, and all tests were completed, giving the chair the green light to open in time for the holidays.

Hanging the Carriers on the Orient.
Attaching the carriers.
Lift Line of the Orient Chairlift
Almost ready!

On Monday morning, local Sun Peaks dignitaries, as well as a crowd of excited skiers and snowboarders, were on hand to fill the first chairs and take the inaugural trip to the top. Plenty of guests also took the chance to christen new run Hasta La Vista, or cruise down Main Village Connector to the village for the first time. An official grand opening celebration for the Orient is planned for late January.

Now Open Banner at the Orient Chairlift
Sun Peaks Resort Director of Skiing Nancy Greene Raine, Sun Peaks Mayor Al Raine, Sun Peaks Councillor Ines Popig, and Tourism Sun Peaks board member Petr Duda were given the honour of first chair.
Firs Chair on the Orient
Loading for the inaugural trip to the top.
Guests on the Orient Chairlift
Trying out the new chair.
Guests on the Orient Chairlift
Away they go!
Guests at the Top of the New Orient Chairlift
All smiles at the top.

This early Christmas present was the culmination of months of hard work by crews from Sun Peaks Resort, Doppelmayr, and several other contractors, so we would like to thank everyone who worked diligently to ensure the Orient lift was ready to welcome our guests for the holiday period.

The Orient chairlift will run from 8:30am daily for the remainder of the winter season.

See you on the slopes!