what actually happened with the dino chair????

what actually happened with the dino chair????

logan
logan

April 11th, 2002, 11:40 pm #1

ive heard 3 differents stories about the rollback of the old dino chair and i was wondering if anyone knew the real story.
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Jack
Jack

April 12th, 2002, 4:13 pm #2

The chair was unsafe ever since it was installed. It is a poor design and many times people fell off of it. The company that installed it only installed I believe 3 chairs then they went out of business. M-Latta was the company out of Spokane and they also installed a chair at Mt. Baker and I believe one at Whistler. The Baker chair is the only one that is still being used and its the chair that crosses the front of the resort with 2 loading stations and an unload point in the middle (simular to dino). The chair had a feature that it could run forwards and backwards and in the mid 70s it got switched into reverse and a kid was thrown off in Hidden Valley and seriously hurt, but this was not the reason for its shutdown. As stated before, the chair was of poor design and the company that built it was gone so parts had to be special made when needed so maint. was expensive. In the mid 80's it was noticed that some of the towers were no longer stable and big money was needed to get it into shape.

My sources for this information are the former Hyak Mgr from the 60's and 70's and a former maint. man who used to do maint/repair on the Hyak lift equipment in the 80's. (Both still live at Hyak estates)
Last edited by hyak on December 3rd, 2007, 2:28 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Bill Wolfe
Bill Wolfe

April 22nd, 2002, 2:52 am #3

Thats interesting. I would tend to believe your story. I was told by a Hyak employee that the lift was still usable, but has been "mothballed" and can be readied in a summer season if need be. Thats why the chair wasn't removed. I do know of the M-Latta history of problems, so your explaination is probably the correct one.

- Bill
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Jack
Jack

April 22nd, 2002, 2:23 pm #4

Strange that an employee would even say such a thing. Just look at this picture I took last summer of the Hidden Valley landing area. The entire landing is collapsed except for the towers. Rep's from the Summit have also said the chair will not ever operate again..that is just a given. The chair has been idle now for over 15 years and they cut all power lines that ran to it years ago.

Funny thing though. A few years ago I was looking inside the old double rope-tow building that used to serve the lower mtn (now used for x-country) trying to find old ski maps and such. I climbed through the open window (the rope tow was shut down in 1977) to find the power was still on in the building and the small wall heater was even on......is that strange or what? I turned the heater off but found it odd that a rope tow that was shut down 25 years ago still had power running to it (the rope tow engine was humming) and if I really wanted to I prob. could have fired it up......This was a couple years ago so I'm not sure if its still that way now but I'm sure it wasted a lot of money over the years in power costs.....
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Jack
Jack

April 22nd, 2002, 2:24 pm #5

Here is the picture I meant to put in the other email.




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Bill Wolfe
Bill Wolfe

April 23rd, 2002, 1:04 am #6

Strange that an employee would even say such a thing. Just look at this picture I took last summer of the Hidden Valley landing area. The entire landing is collapsed except for the towers. Rep's from the Summit have also said the chair will not ever operate again..that is just a given. The chair has been idle now for over 15 years and they cut all power lines that ran to it years ago.

Funny thing though. A few years ago I was looking inside the old double rope-tow building that used to serve the lower mtn (now used for x-country) trying to find old ski maps and such. I climbed through the open window (the rope tow was shut down in 1977) to find the power was still on in the building and the small wall heater was even on......is that strange or what? I turned the heater off but found it odd that a rope tow that was shut down 25 years ago still had power running to it (the rope tow engine was humming) and if I really wanted to I prob. could have fired it up......This was a couple years ago so I'm not sure if its still that way now but I'm sure it wasted a lot of money over the years in power costs.....
Yeah, I worked at Crystal for a few seasons being lift op/lift maintenance(minimal maintenance) and that beast couldn't be ready, even if they wanted to. After reading that they were gonna add a HSQ or at least a FG, then yeah, pull the dino out. Even though it is fun seeing old relics at resorts like Hyak. BTW - The picture that follows this post, is that the backside of the dino? Is it ok if I use it on a website?

- Bill Wolfe
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Jack
Jack

April 23rd, 2002, 3:17 pm #7

Sure, not a problem if you use the pic (thanks for asking). If you want other shots LMK what your focus is and I'll see what I have, or if I can get one for ya.
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Bill Wolfe
Bill Wolfe

April 24th, 2002, 1:15 am #8

I am creating a history site on Washington Ski Areas and Ski Lifts. It'll focus partly on the ski lifts and other parts will include lost areas, current areas, etc. I am still laying out. I want it to be a combination of www.chairlift.org and www.nelsap.org, but more so directed to the Pacific Northwest. And ANY history pictures of the areas and/or lifts are much appreciated. I couldn't find much in the local library on the history of the pass or any other ski area in Washington, but I know they exist somewhere. So Jack, your help is appreciated.

- Bill
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Ron
Ron

December 2nd, 2007, 11:44 pm #9

ive heard 3 differents stories about the rollback of the old dino chair and i was wondering if anyone knew the real story.
You guys are ill informed. Murray Latta built a ton of lifts and many good ones at that, many in Canada. The Hyak incident was operator error induced. The brake systems on the lift were sufficient as was the design to prevent this but the operator reversed the lift not knowing what the outcome would be. The lift was only designed to be run backwards when empty of passengers, mainly for maintenance. The brake systems were not designed for this. The lifty had run it backward for maintwenance before but had no clue when he did this with a fulll load. Of course code requirements and training is so much better today that any reoccurence on a lift today would not be likely.
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Joined: November 29th, 2005, 9:21 pm

December 3rd, 2007, 1:08 am #10

This thread keeps coming back...the reason the dino chair stopped running is because parts were hard to get...yet it seems interesting that those parts were found and used during the Pac-West era, despit the costs. It was not until the area sold to the Moffets and eventuall to Booth Creek that the maintenance ended on the chair. It was a few years later that the ramp in Hidden Valley collapsed. I believe it was the 3rd year that the lights were removed to "light" a trail at Alpental/ What I rememeber of the days of Pac-west were a full ski area, inexpensive lift tickets, a full lodge and bar and generally everyone who was involved...from ski school to ski patrol, to a race progam were having a great time.

During Pac-West's tenure it was anticipated that the Dino Chair would be converted to a Riblet as they were pretty much state of the art at the time (this was before detachables). I find it interesting that people still point fingers at Pac West... They did not take out the lights, mothball dino, cut hours of operation, not maintain the parking lot, close the bar, etc etc etc. What they did do...add lights for the back trails...which were not there prior to Pac West taking over...they added Snowmaking equipment for the lower hill, they operated until 2am on the weekends, they purchased one of the first new generations of groomers at a cost of $110,000....they had 2 huge parking lots with full time attendants, they had a huge ski school program, THEY BUILT THE STATES FIRST MAN-MADE SNOWBOARDING HALF PIPE...with lights and music for night time fun...etc etc etc. The state of Hyak today is a direct reflection of the Moffets ownership and eventual sale to Booth Creek...nothing more and nothing less. For those of us who were at Hyak during the time of Pac-West, I do believe you would be challenged to find fault with them...maybe the days prior were even better...but no one can say that Hyak has improved since it was sold by the Pac West group!
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