Ahhh, there's nothing quite like being crammed into a steel box with 90 of your closest friends (all of whom are competing for the same snowy bounty and many of whom have recently neglected their personal hygiene) all while hovering more than 200 feet above jagged rocks and certain death. The Aerial Tram. Classic Post: 7 American Aerial Trams YOU Should Ride | Unofficial Networks

Classic Post: 7 American Aerial Trams YOU Should Ride

Jay Peak Tram through Fog

Classic Post: 7 American Aerial Trams YOU Should Ride

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Classic Post: 7 American Aerial Trams YOU Should Ride

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Ahhh, there’s nothing quite like being crammed into a steel box with 90 of your closest friends (all of whom are competing for the same snowy bounty and many of whom have recently neglected their personal hygiene) all while hovering more than 200 feet above jagged rocks and certain death. The Aerial Tram. Usually used to access some of the gnarliest terrain at a given ski area, the Tram is a staple for many European ski areas. In the U.S. there are only a few aerial trams used for ski access.

So, inspired by the 10 BEST Ski Lifts in the WORLD  here are some notable American Aerial Trams:

Cannon Mountain Aerial Tram – Cannon Mountain, NH

Cannon Mountain Aerial Tram New Hampshire

Photo – northernnh.com

  • Travels to the 4,080′ summit of Cannon Mountain in Franconia Notch
  • Access to most vertical in the state of New Hampshire
  • Uphill Capacity of 770 with a cabin capacity of 70 skiers/riders
  • A 2022′ vertical rise in only 8 minutes
  • Access to 264 acres of bitter cold, frigid wind, jagged ice and 160 inches (wow!) of annual snowfall
  • Video of what makes Cannon special.

 Jay Peak Tram – Jay Peak Resort, VT 

Jay Peak Tram through Fog

Jay Peak Tram comes in through the fog. photo – Donny O’Neill

  • Travels to the Jay Peak summit at 3,968 feet
  • Access to some of the most extreme terrain the East Coast has to offer including the Face Chutes, Tuckerman’s Chute, Valhalla and the Big Jay backcountry
  • Uphill capacity of 360 skiers per hour with a 60 person cabin capacity
  • 2153 foot vertical rise in only 7 minutes
  • Offers a great view into the mythical “Jay Cloud,” the explanation for the near 400 inches of snow Jay Peak receives each year.
  • Like Mad River Glen’s Single Chair, it has its own beer named after it, the Jay Peak Tram Ale brewed by Long Trail Brewing Company
  • WARNING:When the tram enters the fog and you lose any and all visibility, you may feel like this young lad.

Lone Peak Tram – Big Sky, MT 

Big Sky's Lone Peak Tram

The Lone Peak Tram car comes in for a landing after venturing to the summit of Big Sky

  • Opened for the 1995-1996 season and added over 1,200 acres of skiable terrain and increased the vertical to 4,350
  • 15 passengers travel 1,450 vertical to the top of Lone Mountain sitting at 11, 166′ in only 4 minutes
  • Access to the Big Couloir and other extreme terrain
  • 2011-2012 Big Sky Season Review

Aerial Tram – Squaw Valley, CA 

Squaw Valley Aerial Tram Top Viewphoto – Squaw.com

  • Travels 1,886 vertical over breathtaking views to High Camp at elevation 8,200′
  • Uphill capacity of 700 skiers per hour.
  • Provides access to Silverado and other upper mountain lifts
  • Get the tram operator to announce your name and get 1000 G.N.A.R points or claim your tram farts and gain 500 points
  • Watch JT Holmes base jump off the top of the tram to celebrate the start of Squaw’s 60th season.

Snowbird Tram – Snowbird, UT 

Snowbird Blue Tram Car

The blue car trucks up the mountain on a bluebird day – enjoyutah.org

  • 2,900′ vertical rise that provides access to almost the entire mountain
  • 120 person cabin capacity (although usually not filled to capacity in the winter)
  • 10 minute ride to the 11,000′ summit of Hidden Peak
  • A red box and a blue box car, in case one color is more appealing than the other
  • Check out Daryn Edmund’s Snowbird Tram Review

 

Jackson Hole Tram – Jackson Hole, WY

Big Red

The Big Red Box – photo – jacksonholenet.com

  • The”New Tram” opened in 2008 travels 4,139′ in 9 minutes to an elevation of 10, 450′
  • It has a cabin capacity of 100 (excluding the operator) and an uphill capacity of 650 riders per hour
  • Plays music for the listening enjoyment of its passengers
  • Provides access to 2,500 acres of in-bounds terrain as well as 3,000 acres of some of the best backcountry terrain in the world
  • Probably the coolest and most modern looking tram in America
  • Take a look at Dexter Rutecki’s Jackson Hole Tram Review

Aerial Tram – Alyeska, AK 

Aerial Tram Alyeska

Aerial Tram at Alyeska – JohnnyJet.com

  • Due to popular demand, the Aerial Tram at Alyeska Resort
  • A short 4 minute ride to the to 2,334′ elevation from the Hotel Alyeska at the base
  • Access to the majority of the non-hike-to terrain at Alyeska Ski Resort, who had a modest 975″ snowfall total in 2011-2012
  • Vertical rise of 2,025′ with a cabin capacity of 60 people and uphill capacity of 800 riders per hour
  • Video from last season at Alyeska

 

Honorable Mention:

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