Skiers and riders loading onto two of [R81R, Bridger Bowl]'s lifts this winter will discover something different. Two of Bridger's lifts-Powder Park and Pierre's Knob-will now sport new loading carpets.

The loading carpets, which are popular at European resorts, make the process of getting on the lift easier, especially for kids and beginners...and those experienced skiers who fail to pay attention when the chair zips up behind them. They require the additional installation of gates to funnel skiers and riders onto the carpet at the appropriate time and in the appropriate lane. No scrambling to get in place.

Bridger estimates that the uphill capacity of Powder Park and Pierre's Knob chairs have been running at 70 percent of maximum due to the number of times attendants must slow or stop chairs. The addition of the carpets should speed up the lift ride for all-with fewer stops for misloads.

The Powder Park lift will also include a feature that allows the platform to elevate for small kids. The attendant pushes a button to activate the platform, elevating children to the chair height without a boost from their parents or the attendant.

The Powder Park lift accesses beginner terrain, but it also services intermediate and advanced skiers heading to the upper lifts in Bridger Bowl. The resort anticipates the new carpet with the elevation feature for small kids will move skiers and riders out of the base area faster and lessen the base area congestion on big powder days and weekends.

Bridger Bowl also chose to install a carpet on Pierre's Knob lift due to its popularity and the lines that accumulate when Schlasman's terrain opens. The lift accesses the buffed out intermediate cruiser runs such as Thunder Road and Emil's Mile, but also provides the crucial link to the new expert terrain on the Schlasman's Lift installed last year. Skiers and riders properly equipped with avalanche transceivers can tour Mundy's Bowl, Slushman's Ravine, or the ridge.

Bridger plans to open for the season on Dec. 11.

More information. Or call 800-223-9609.