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The NEW Magic Mountain

jimmywilson69

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Seems like all normal preventative maintenance on Red. Do it now before it burns you.

The Magic crew definitely seem to have a handle on balancing maintenance and fixing all the old broken stuff from years gone by.
 

ne_skier

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Seems like all normal preventative maintenance on Red. Do it now before it burns you.
Definitely. They'd much rather put the money in now and keep Red running for another few decades than have to spend more money on non-preventative maintenance a few years later.
 

Newpylong

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Yes, the recommended replacement
period on bullwheel bearings is now 10,000 hours. If it starts knocking mid-season its all over. Hard to get a crane in to replace it especially if the shaft is shot from bearing failure and the replacement needs to be machined.

Rope must have failed NDT or shown excessive signs of fatigue.

The bearing is a big task but not overly expensive, the haul rope and motor on the other hand aren't cheap.

Magic is the ski area equivalent of Rocky. They have my utmost respect for doing the right thing and never quitting. It must be such a great can-do team to be part of.
 
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machski

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Yes, the recommended replacement
period on bullwheel bearings is now 10,000 hours. If it starts knocking mid-season its all over. Hard to get a crane in to replace it especially if the shaft is shot from bearing failure and the replacement needs to be machined.

Rope must have failed NDT or shown excessive signs of fatigue.

The bearing is a big task but not overly expensive, the haul rope and motor on the other hand are extremely expensive.
If the motor/haul rope were not completely shot, they may have tried to eke out another season, but not with all the engineering issues run into with an unfinished Black to date. Tough to drop that coin but a wise move. Hindsight is always 20/20, but I wonder if the final cost for Black would now be equal to buying a new, properly engineered lift for that line back then (and getting it in over a defined timeline).
 

mbedle

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If the motor/haul rope were not completely shot, they may have tried to eke out another season, but not with all the engineering issues run into with an unfinished Black to date. Tough to drop that coin but a wise move. Hindsight is always 20/20, but I wonder if the final cost for Black would now be equal to buying a new, properly engineered lift for that line back then (and getting it in over a defined timeline).
I find that hard to believe given the original stated cost for purchase and install was 1 million for the quad.
 

ne_skier

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I wonder if the final cost for Black would now be equal to buying a new, properly engineered lift for that line back then (and getting it in over a defined timeline).
Not sure how much Black cost Magic but still, a new lift would likely be much more. They likely paid nothing compared to a new lift, and I wouldn't be surprised if Stratton cut Magic a deal given their relationship and distance. It's important to remember that there isn't really anything "wrong" with the lift, it just needs to be upgraded due to the terrain it's on. Black Line is significantly steeper, rockier and has a different profile than where it was at Stratton (Or Flatton, given what I'm saying). If I had to guess, and for the record I have never worked in the industry, a brand new Leitner-Poma fixed-grip quad, over a mile long, would cost somewhere in the 2 million range, and as I'm typing this I have been informed by mbedle that the cost for the lift purchase & install was stated at $1M, a lot of shit would have to go wrong to meet the price of a new lift.
 

Newpylong

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Looking at comparables, Sugarbush paid Dopp $3M for the VH FGQ at under 4,000 feet (that one had a carpet) line length. Sunday River paid $2.1M for the Spruce Triple at 4,400 feet. I don't think it would be out of the realm of possibility to be looking at $3M+ for a new Black Quad.
 

machski

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Looking at comparables, Sugarbush paid Dopp $3M for the VH FGQ at under 4,000 feet (that one had a carpet) line length. Sunday River paid $2.1M for the Spruce Triple at 4,400 feet. I don't think it would be out of the realm of possibility to be looking at $3M+ for a new Black Quad.
I would agree on that price. A lot of cash to pony upfront for. That said, they are now into custom engineered and fabricated parts for two tower sheave sets. That is no small $$ cost right there. Add in all the other "small fixes" and a more than two year delayed install timeframe, I bet the costs are becoming more comparable than many here might believe. But with the current install, a lot of the increased costs can be paid in smaller increments as they move forward and hit hurdles than that one large cookie a new on would have required. Let's just hope once it is up and running, the drive, transmission, bulllwheel bearings, etc all have copious life left on them.
 

Keelhauled

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I would agree on that price. A lot of cash to pony upfront for. That said, they are now into custom engineered and fabricated parts for two tower sheave sets. That is no small $$ cost right there. Add in all the other "small fixes" and a more than two year delayed install timeframe, I bet the costs are becoming more comparable than many here might believe. But with the current install, a lot of the increased costs can be paid in smaller increments as they move forward and hit hurdles than that one large cookie a new on would have required. Let's just hope once it is up and running, the drive, transmission, bulllwheel bearings, etc all have copious life left on them.
Well that assumes that they paid in full from cash reserves, as opposed to a capital loan. I don't know much of anything about ski resort business in particular, but in general I wouldn't count on that being true. And it may well be at this point that a defined loan repayment schedule for the whole purchase and install would be preferable to paying these bills from the contractor from operating cash or a likely higher interest line of credit. But I suppose it's a moot point by now.
 

ne_skier

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Let's just hope once it is up and running, the drive, transmission, bulllwheel bearings, etc all have copious life left on them.
Poma fixed-grip lifts from the 1980s and 90s are notoriously reliable and well built, hence why you see so many of them around. The drive model, Alpha, was such a home run that they're still making it today, 40 years later. They're also common, Stratton has two Alphas (S American and Solstice), Bromley has one (Blue Ribbon), Killington has 3 (North Ridge, South Ridge, Northbrook), Okemo has 7 (Black Ridge, Glades Peak, Sachem, both South Ridge quads, Sunshine, Morningstar), Sugarbush has 4 (Heaven's Gate, North Lynx, Summit, Inverness), you get the idea. I'm pretty sure a new drive was installed for the relocation to bring it up to code as well, meaning that if this is complete for the ski season we'll be going in with all lifts running on relatively new motors.
 

JoeB-Z

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Well that assumes that they paid in full from cash reserves, as opposed to a capital loan. I don't know much of anything about ski resort business in particular, but in general I wouldn't count on that being true. And it may well be at this point that a defined loan repayment schedule for the whole purchase and install would be preferable to paying these bills from the contractor from operating cash or a likely higher interest line of credit. But I suppose it's a moot point by now.
I wouldn't worry about Magic's underlying finances. There is a large partnership who knew what they were getting into. The original cost was like salvage value with a $5M capital plan. That did not include the quad. When they are done, they will have a premier unique resort whose terrain stands alone in S. Vermont. It is already justifying what has become a premium season pass price with record sales.
 

hughconway

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I'll give it until 11/1 to make the call (again) this year, but I suspect that new Polaris Ranger on their facebook page will be the only quad going to the summit of Magic this season. I'm also extremely concerned that there will be delays on the red double chair as well given COVID supply chain issues and Magic's ability to stretch the timeline of nearly any project to infinity. It's also interesting that management claimed they were surprised that the double chair rope failed - just about everyone in the lift geek community has known that rope was shot for a few years now - I even mentioned it in one of my posts in this thread a year or two ago. Another tidbit of rope information that I haven't seen Magic share publicly is that the frankenrope that they spliced together for the new quad is only conditionally approved for passenger use to give Magic a fighting chance to complete that lift however it will need to be replaced with a new rope after it's first season of operation.

It was nice to see they are working on the snowmaking pond pump, but the background of the picture leads me to believe that the pond expansion project was silently abandoned again this year? Scrolling back thru the pictures of the new/repaired/replaced snowmaking pipe in their beginner area it would also appear that the surface tow relocation has also stalled?

I really want to see this place survive - and possibly even thrive. The management seems to have a solid plan to build the business and improve the infrastucture, but they keep falling flat on their face when it comes to timely execution of those plans. I wish them the very best of luck in this uphill battle / slow-motion train wreck,
 

ThatGuy

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I'll give it until 11/1 to make the call (again) this year, but I suspect that new Polaris Ranger on their facebook page will be the only quad going to the summit of Magic this season.
Thanks for the unneeded prognosis. You can grab an epic pass before Labor day for a nice discount, no one says you have to ski here.
 

ss20

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A minute from the Alta exit off the I-15!
I will say the instillation of Black has been totally botched...and whether that has to do with engineering firms or contractors or parts shortages or whatever... We're still waiting on a lift that was to be installed years ago. I just never liked the mentality of "well it's Magic so they get a free pass". They still told customers there's be a reliable second option to the summit and that still hasn't happened yet... despite many passed deadlines. If it was a corporate resort management would be burned at the stake.

I would have preferred they'd of taken the approach they did with Green and worked on it slowly but finally got it open when it was ready without posting promises to customers about expected completion dates.

Other than that I've got no qualms with Magic and what the new owners have accomplished. They've gotten a lot of my $$$ over the years and I'm sad I won't be able to ski there anymore now that I'm moving West. Tons of great memories there.
 

Newpylong

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But they aren't a corporate resort, so they haven't been burned at the stake, nor will they be. If they are limiting pass sales, my guess is while the concerns with Black are valid, they are not as important with their ACTUAL customers as they are with armchair GMs.

As for this quote, "I wish them the very best of luck in this uphill battle / slow-motion train wreck." Wishing someone luck in the same sentence as calling their overall business venture a train wreck stinks to be blunt.
 
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JoeB-Z

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Why does hughconway exclusively post the sniping on this thread? If he is in the industry, it is very unseemly. Anyway, pass buyers speak with their money. Magic will grind through the issues.
 

Smellytele

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Right where I want to be
I'll give it until 11/1 to make the call (again) this year, but I suspect that new Polaris Ranger on their facebook page will be the only quad going to the summit of Magic this season. I'm also extremely concerned that there will be delays on the red double chair as well given COVID supply chain issues and Magic's ability to stretch the timeline of nearly any project to infinity. It's also interesting that management claimed they were surprised that the double chair rope failed - just about everyone in the lift geek community has known that rope was shot for a few years now - I even mentioned it in one of my posts in this thread a year or two ago. Another tidbit of rope information that I haven't seen Magic share publicly is that the frankenrope that they spliced together for the new quad is only conditionally approved for passenger use to give Magic a fighting chance to complete that lift however it will need to be replaced with a new rope after it's first season of operation.

It was nice to see they are working on the snowmaking pond pump, but the background of the picture leads me to believe that the pond expansion project was silently abandoned again this year? Scrolling back thru the pictures of the new/repaired/replaced snowmaking pipe in their beginner area it would also appear that the surface tow relocation has also stalled?

I really want to see this place survive - and possibly even thrive. The management seems to have a solid plan to build the business and improve the infrastucture, but they keep falling flat on their face when it comes to timely execution of those plans. I wish them the very best of luck in this uphill battle / slow-motion train wreck,
On this doll show me where they touched you…
 
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