One of Gatlinburg’s most iconic attractions has officially reopened! The Gatlinburg Sky Lift is up and running once again after six months of renovations. The new and improved chairlift ride was welcomed back by city officials with a special event at the end of May. The Mayor of Gatlinburg and the Mayor of Sevier County were the first guests to ride the new chairlift. To help you make the most of your next vacation, Chalet Village has put together a guide to everything you need to know about the Gatlinburg Sky Lift.
Changes to the Gatlinburg Sky Lift
The Gatlinburg Sky Lift is still the same ride you know and love, but a few improvements have been made to the attraction. The Sky Lift now features 92 chairs that can accommodate up to three passengers. Additionally, the Sky Lift’s towers and cross arms are taller than they were before the renovations. Now, passengers are 8 – 10 feet higher during their chairlift ride, which makes the whole experience even more exciting.
The Gatlinburg Sky Lift travels 1,800 feet from The Strip all the way to the top of Crockett Mountain. The ride to the mountain’s peak is 9 minutes long and the ride back to the Parkway is also 9 minutes long. Passengers on the chairlift enjoy spectacular views of downtown Gatlinburg and the Great Smoky Mountains.
(See Also: 4 Incredibly Scenic Views in Gatlinburg)
History of the Gatlinburg Sky Lift
The Gatlinburg Sky Lift has been delighting visitors to Gatlinburg for over 60 years! The idea for the Sky Lift was conceived in 1953 when local businessman Rel Maples pitched the concept to Everett Kircher, the owner of a number of ski resorts around the country. Maples granted Kricher a 99-year lease on his property for the development of the chairlift ride.
When the original Gatlinburg Sky Lift opened in 1954, it made history as the first chairlift in the South. The Sky Lift was an immediate success and by its third season, the attraction had been frequented by over 10,000 guests.
Additional Renovations to Come
Right now, the Sky Lift does not make a stop at the top of Crockett Mountain. In the near future, however, passengers will be able to get off at the mountain’s summit to spend some time at the Gatlinburg Sky Deck. This fun area will feature a gift shop and a restaurant. Construction on the Sky Deck is expected to be completed in the fall.
Where to Stay in Gatlinburg
When you stay at Chalet Village, you will be just a short drive from the Gatlinburg Sky Lift. Our cabin community is 10 – 15 minutes from all of the fun on the Parkway. Guests at Chalet Village will enjoy a variety of wonderful resort amenities, including swimming pools, tennis courts, paved walking trails, shuffleboard, horseshoes, and even more fun.
With everything from 1 bedroom cabins to 8 bedroom cabins, we are sure to have the perfect accommodations for your vacation. To start planning your getaway, browse our selection of Gatlinburg cabin rentals!