Training to evacuate the Catskill Thunder gondola

How would ski patrol evacuate the gondola if it ever became necessary?

Unlike chairlift evacuations which are performed by a ski patrol team on the ground, lifting a harness to the chair occupants, we use a very specialized harness to reach each gondola cabin.  To imagine what that looks like, envision yourself in a gondola cabin, looking up the cable to see a ski patroller tethered to the cable coming towards your cabin.  

Belleayre Ski Patrol has a specially trained team to evacuate the gondola if such a need should arise.  As the gondola is new to Belleayre, our team learned and trained throughout the summer at our sister mountain patrols: Gore and Whiteface.

The gondola has more than one backup that guards against the need for an evacuation in the case of a mechanical issue.  There is a large diesel backup system that can very comfortably run the lift and a second backup is (another) diesel with hydrostatic drive that enables us to turn the bull wheel even in the event of a gearbox failure.


Catskill Thunder Layout:



Catskill Thunder Lift Evacuation Training/Operations: