Gondola Facts

The gondola, the first and only free public transportation of its kind in the United States, officially opened December 20, 1996 and was originally built to help improve air quality while expanding the ski area. Since then, it has become a popular attraction for both our residents and visitors as it offers them a front row seat with Mother Nature at 10,500 feet and access to a copious amount of biking, hiking and skiing trails as well as shops, restaurants and watering holes.

The Numbers

  •  Approximately 2.25 million passengers ride the gondola annually – and safely - and over 26  million riders have been transported since opening day.
  • The gondola operates roughly 287 days each year with routine maintenance scheduled during our off-season months.
  • It takes about 13 minutes to get from the Town of Telluride to the Town of Mountain Village.
  • A cabin travels 11 miles per hour at full speed, which means each cabin travels over 52,000 miles per year.
  • Approximately 25% of our cabins are pet accessible. We also have wheelchair accessible cabins.
  • The trip between the two towns is eight miles long whereas the gondola travels three miles between the two towns. This saves you money on gas.
  • If we relied on rubber transportation, it would take 18, 50-passenger buses to maintain a 900-people per hour capacity. This would translate to more people on the road and more pollutants in the air.
  • The Telluride Mountain Village Owners Association purchases renewable energy credits from San Miguel Power Association, which funds the development and operation of regional renewable energy resources.
  • The gondola is funded by a number of financial resources.

Gondola Dates

  • Closes at midnight for the spring off-season: Sunday, April 3, 2011
  • Opens at 7 a.m. for the summer season: Thursday, May 26, 2011
  • Closes at midnight for the fall off-season: Sunday, October 16, 2011
  • Opens at 7 a.m. for the winter season: Friday, November 18, 2011

During off-season months when the gondola is closed, bus service is provided to and from the towns of Mountain Village and Telluride.

Gondola Hours

  • 7 a.m. to midnight, daily during the winter and summer seasons … about 285 days per year.
  • In some instances, gondola operational hours are extended. When this occurs, the extended hours are posted on the Town of Mountain Village web site. Expect long lines during peak times; your patience is appreciated.
  • Without notice, the gondola may close temporarily due to weather, a power outage, or something else that is beyond our control. When this occurs, a specific operating procedure is followed.

If you happen to leave behind a personal item in one of the cabins, please refer to our Lost and Found procedure.