Lone Peak tram, the largest on-mountain infrastructure project in Big Sky Resort’s history, opened today.
The resort broke ground on the installation in summer 2022 and began load testing the new Doppelmayr/Garaventa ropeway system in November of this year.
The grand opening will be marked with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and traditional bell ringing, as well as live music, craft beer, and coffee. Places on the inaugural public tram ride were auctioned off to benefit local organizations, including the Big Sky Community Organization, the Gallatin River Task Force, and the Morningstar Learning Center.
It is the first new tram built at a North American ski area in 15 years. The new higher-capacity system is a complete replacement of the resort’s original 15-passenger jig-back tram built in 1995. Its two 75-passenger CWA cabins have glass floor panels, as well as configurable seating for 12.
The tram can travel up to 22 mph, providing a ride time of 3.7 minutes, with a 1.6-minute dwell time in terminals. It starts at 9,024 feet and rises 2,142 vertical feet to a new top terminal, which offers the highest scenic overlook in Montana at 11,166 feet of elevation. The system is supported by one, 100-foot-tall tower, located approximately 650 feet below the top terminal.
The resort’s general manager, Troy Nedved, described the opening of the tram as “a transformational moment in Big Sky’s history.”
Once the planned Explorer Gondola, a two-stage Doppelmayr D-Line gondola from the resort village to the tram’s bottom terminal, is completed in winter 2025-26, pedestrian passengers will be able to access the summit of Lone Peak for the first time. Glass enclosures at the bottom terminal and a two-level all-glass observation platform at the summit will eventually offer year-round scenic viewing experiences at the resort.
Big Sky also has plans for a new mountaintop food and beverage facility housed in the former top terminal of the original tram.