Gold Hill Chutes 8 and 9 are now easier to access at [R456R, Telluride]. A new bridge and two steel staircases have been placed on the left shoulder of Palmyra Peak.  A Canadian helicopter company did the heavy lifting.

The two sets of stairs are 48 and 54 feet, weighing 3,304 and 3,324 pounds. The bridge is 24 feet long, weighing 2,750 pounds. The components are 30 inches wide, with hand railings on both sides and a serrated grated steel walking surface, perfect for ski boots. The ascent combines for 126 linear feet ascending Gold Hill.

Take the Revelation Bowl lift. You'll then take a short walk to get to the bottom of the stairs. Start climbing the stairs and you'll come to the bridge that goes over a couloir. Take the stairs farther, and you end up at the top of Gold Hill 9 chute.

Telluride's Maryhelyn Kirwan says they wanted guests to have easier access to the 450 acres of glades and above-timberline skiing on Gold Hill. "Skiers and riders used to hike over a skinny trail and it was a bit of a scramble to get up there. Now, it is safer, fun, and cool." She adds that it's worth the hike, "It's absolutely stunning and a beautiful view up there. The terrain is incredible."

The runs are double diamond blacks at 12,260 feet in altitude. It's Telluride's highest lift-served terrain.

More Information  Or call 800-778-8581.