Ski lift definition

French abbreviation French ski lift term Definition of lift in English  Defining features of ski lift
TSD Telesiege debrayable No direct translation but essentially, it’s a superfast, supersafe chairlift
  • Carries between four and six people.
  • You alight with your skis/board attached.
  • Slows right down at top and bottom to make getting on and off safe and easy.
  • Speed of chairlift maximises capacity, thereby reducing lift queues at resorts.
  • Usually the newest chairlifts on the circuit.
TC Telecabine (gondola) Telecabine/gondola
  • Enclosed ski lift of varying sizes, seating from six people up.
  • You alight with your skis or board off.
  • Gondolas can carry between 20 and 30 people at a time, depending on size.
  • Seated gondolas can have external space to carry skis, boards and mountain bikes (in the summer).
  • You take your skis off and inside in multiple capacity gondolas.
TS Telesiege Chairlift (ski lift by chair)
  • Usually more dated
  • Carry between two and six people
  • Clunky & weighty mechanisms: watch the back of your legs if you don’t sit down in time.
  • You alight with your skis on
  • The chairlifts will slow for skiers & boarders to get on and off, but you have to be quick and know what you’re doing to avoid mishap
  • Slower than the TSD
TK Teleski Button lift/drag lift/T-Bar lift/Poma lift (all variants of ski tow)
  • Pulley system which drags you up a hill while wearing your skis
  • ‘Button’ on the end of a retractable cable, which you pull down and slip between your thighs and clench to hold on.
  • Your bottom rests on the ‘button’, while your thigh muscles and parallel skis keep you on the lift.
  • Drag lift can go over short and long distances and up shallow and very steep gradients.
  • Staying on works your ski legs and helps you practice keeping your skis parallel to each other. If they cross, you’re most likely to lose your balance and fall off.
  • Moguls, dips and snow drifts can build up over the day. Can add a touch of interest to a slow ride or throw a novice off balance.
  • Getting on without falling or letting go of the pulley can take some practice if you are new to them.
  • Button lift takes one person per button. T-Bar Lifts sit one person either side of the T. Bar lodges under your buttocks while you hold onto the central cable with one hand.
T Tapis Magic carpet ski lift
  • Looks like a conveyor belt
  • Installed at the snow level
  • Machinery and return belt are hidden below
  • Can be canopied
  • Skiers & boarders slide onto the belt from the base of the hill
  • Stand facing forward on your skis or board
  • At the top, the belt pushes you forward onto the snow and away you go
  • Easy to use for beginners & children
  • Usually found on shallow gradients over short distances
  • Slow


Recent Posts

Mark Cavendish Specialized Venge Tour de France bike makes the mountain stages

Mark Cavendish’s exit from the 2014 Tour de France will go down in Tour history.

His hunger to take the Harrogate stage – his mum’s home town – ended in disaster as he clipped a fellow rider and his bike created a cascade of pro riders in the final fight to the finish. The crash was spectacular. Cavendish was devastated. It ended not only his hopes of winning the Grand Depart but also of completing the 2014 Tour de France. The injuries he sustained in the crash put him out of the competition.

Ski Walk Cycle Pyrenees was there rooting him on and willing him to take the glory of a Grand Depart win in Harrogate. Ski Walk Cycle Pyrenees’ home town, Bagneres de Luchon, is twinned with Harrogate. A win for Cavendish would have been poetic for us.

Cavendish missed out on the stage that should have been his – and the fight for the Tour. Luck has not been on Cav’s side this year.

It’s been a pretty lucky one for Ski Walk Cycle Pyrenees though. A month after the 2014 Tour de France ended, Specialized contacted James to say he would be getting Mark Cavendish’s 2014 Tour de France bike. And a trip to Morgan Hill in California to pick it up. Unbelievable. But true.

So Cav’s bike, at least, will make it to the mountain stages of the Tour de France. Perhaps he would like to come and ride it on the cols he should have conquered this summer.

Here’s the main man himself with a short video message to James Hatchett congratulating him on the win.

Want to ride the Pyrenees cols yourself? Contact Ski Walk Cycle Pyrenees to plan your Pyrenees mountain adventure.

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