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Palm Springs Aerial Tramway surpasses 20 million riders

The Palm Springs Aerial Tramway has surpassed 20 million visitors, thanks to four friends visiting Palm Springs from the Northeast this week.
Robbie Zweig, Brandon Mercier, Michael Landau and Abby Slywka collectively became the 20 millionth Tramway riders when they arrived just before 8 p.m. Thursday at the Valley Station in Palm Springs, where riders climb into a rotating tram car that carries them on a 2.5-mile trip, with an elevation gain of almost 6,000 feet, to the Mountain Station.
Officials said the group initially thought they were being pranked as they were informed of their new designation in the Tramway’s 54-year history.
“I’ve never been the 20-millionth anything,” Mercier said, while Landau remarked that “It must be the dry heat that made us lucky.”
Zweig said the view on his first trip up the mountain was “breathtaking,” while Slywka said she was happy to have rescheduled her westward trip to include an extra day on the Tramway.
“I travel a lot for work, but now try to see things on my trips, like the Tram. I am so happy I changed my flight until tomorrow. What a fun night!” Slywka said.
The foursome also received a gift bag worth more than $150.
“I remember our 10 millionth rider back in 1994. It took us 31 years to hit that mark, but only 23 years to reach our 20 millionth,” Tramway General Manager Nancy Nichols said.
“The clock now starts ticking on us reaching our 30 millionth rider. I suspect it will take even less time to reach that milestone.”

10 things to  know about the Tramway

Construction began in 1961 and was funded by the sale of $8.15 million in private revenue bonds.
The inaugural ride was on Sept. 12, 1963.
The Tramway has been designated a historical civil engineering landmark.
Rotating tram cars — the world’s largest — were installed in 2000.
The 10-minute, 2.5-mile rides begin at the Valley Station (elevation 2,643 feet) off Highway 111 in Palm Springs and end at the Mountain Station (elevation 8,516 feet) in the Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains National Monument.
The 40mm compacted hauling cable that spans the distance between the two stations is 13,100 feet long and weighs 4.22 pounds per foot — for a total of more than 55,000 pounds.
The temperature between the bottom and top stations tends to differ by 30-40 degrees.
The tram operates seven days a week all year, except during annual maintenance in September. (The 2017 closure is scheduled for Sept. 11-29.) Hours vary by season and day of the week.
You can watch a live video feed from the tram at .
Get more information at , or 888-515-TRAM (8726).


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