Tamarack Resort, the $1.5 billion new ski area in the Idaho Rockies, has postponed Alpine Skiing due to commence this winter until 2004/5. Tamarack was one of two new ski areas due to open this winter, along side Moonlight Basin in Montana.
Moonlight Basin, located in Big Sky, Montana, is still on course to open for skiing this winter with four lifts – including Montana's only high-speed six-passenger chairlift – and nearly 1,500 acres of skiable terrain. Total lift-served vertical descent in the resort's first winter of operations will be approximately 1,850 feet, another 1,200 feet of vertical will also be available for those prepared to hike up further. The resort recently announced a further new quad chairlift will serve learning area and “easier” terrain. Tamarack will now offer guided snowcat skiing this winter and 22km of Nordic skating lanes will be offered for public use. The resort had planned to open on December 23rd with two Leitner/Poma built high speed quads that were to have been installed this summer at a cost of $6 million. The two lifts are due to run in succession, firstly from the 4,900 feet (1,500m) base to the mid mountain restaurant, then up from the restaurant to the summit at 7,700 feet (2,400m).
The lifts will initially serve three main runs with several cross-overs. A further five high speed quads and several more fixed-grip lifts are planned in the longer term to a total of nine aerial and five surface lifts with a $1.5 billion spend over the next 15 years. The 1,100 acre ski area will contain 25 percent beginner, 40 percent intermediate, and 35 percent advanced terrain.