Gary DeFrange, President of Winter Park Resort, cave an hour long presentation to the Zephyr Mountain Lodge, Fraser Crossing, and Founder's Pointe homeowners this past Saturday as part of the HOA weekend that Intrawest puts on for the owners. Here are the highlights of what he revealed about what's coming to Winter Park Resort in the next few years.
In the coming 12 months, there will be virtually no investment in any new features, slopes, lifts, buildings other than completing the village. He repeatedly said Winter Park has to get to over 1.3 million skiers to be able to move forward (this year, they were around 1 million). But when they do restart the plans, here is what is coming:
1) Vasquez Mountain – 900 acres of skiing, mostly blue and 2 & tim times longer than Cranmer; they will develop this eventually
2) Downhill Mtn Biking – more downhill mtn biking trails
3) Thrill Hill Tubing – will be under or around the Cabriolet (costs $ 2 million to build, so again, not coming in the next few years)
4) Lunch Rock Restaurant & Surface Lift – this will go where Lunch Rock is today at the top of Mary Jane Resort. It will be somewhere between the size of the existing Lunch Rock and Sunspot. They have to get plumbing up there in order to build it (and not use mechanical toilets as are used today) so again, it will be awhile; They will also build a lift from down in Parsenn's bowl up to Lunch Rock so you do not have to ski to Sunnyside and then up.
5) Mary Jane snowmaking – really long explanation to basically say that they want to make snow on MJ so they can open it when they open WP. Something about losing a lot of water to Denver since they do not make snow up there now and when they do have this, they'll be able to use the water 6 times before it goes to Denver due to evaporation / snowfall.
6) Sorensen Park Bypass – a run to get you more easily from one point to another up there
7) Mary Jane Cutoff – this will let you take the Zephyr and then cut over easily to MJ Trail instead of taking Outhouse (personally, this is not pretty for me in the morning if I start on that slope!) Or having to do the whole deal to get over the MJ Trail by going down to Olympia and up.
8) Looking Glass Lift – replacing with the old Timberline Lift
9) Solve Zephyr lift congestion – either speed it up, get a 6 pack (but these are hard to load when beginners around) or put in a Gondola
Gondola from Downtown to Resort is on hold, no idea if they'll ever do it, maybe when they open Vasquez Mountain.