Since the introduction of the first gondola in the United States at Wildcat Mountain Ski Area in 1957, there has been a division between gondola skiers and chairlift skiers. Although both may utilize each other’s preferred systems of uphill ski transportation, skiers and snowboarders will choose a side and frequent one more than the other. Here are the pros and cons of riding gondolas vs. riding chair lifts.
- Gives a chance to warm up, de-fog goggles, and call your mom to tell her how rad your day is
- Allows time for beer drinking as well as other extra curricular activities without the interruption of wind… Tanner Hall knows what I’m talking about!
- Offers a chance to get friendly with your gondola company. Especially if that company includes a member of the opposite sex, just ask Squirrel…
- Have to take your skis off to ride the gondola
- Susceptible to shutting down during high winds (Remember this: Gondola In Extreme Wind Conditions Looks Terrifying)
- At some point, must share a gondola with gapers who sport intolerable bad breath
- Usually slower than a high-speed quad
- Easy and quick access (no taking off your skis). Ski on, ski off.
- As long as the chair is not at the base, it’s no problem snagging a chair with just the buddies
- Unobstructed views of the upcoming run as well as the gaping public. “Dad is that you down there!?”
- Ability to heckle from the chair
- Solo chairs offer time to ponder the meaning of life
- The cold days are especially cold on a high-speed quad
- They’re even colder on a slow, fixed grip double
- The bar… need I say more?
- Ever been on a chair in 50 mph + winds? I don’t recommend it
- No Squirrel sessions