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They're making snow in the East this morning

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They're making snow in the East this morning

Postby Admin » Sat Oct 09, 2010 10:16 am

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Re: They're making snow in the East this morning

Postby icelanticskier » Sat Oct 09, 2010 6:18 pm

THAT'S RIGHT!

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Re: They're making snow in the East this morning

Postby EMSC » Sat Oct 09, 2010 9:30 pm

What are the odds of SR having a long enough cold snap to open in the next few days/week? I know A basin and Loveland will have nearly every night cold enough from here on out to make more (plus no R-word to interrupt). Would be interesting to see both Colo areas get trumped by an Eastern resort...
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Re: They're making snow in the East this morning

Postby jasoncapecod » Sun Oct 10, 2010 6:51 am

What are the odds of SR having a long enough cold snap to open in the next few days/week? I know A basin and Loveland will have nearly every night cold enough from here on out to make more (plus no R-word to interrupt). Would be interesting to see both Colo areas get trumped by an Eastern resort..


close to zero...rising humidity and temps close to 60 each day...

but you never know..they might open with a pile of snow and a couple of snowboarders..
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Re: They're making snow in the East this morning

Postby Geoff » Mon Oct 11, 2010 9:10 am

The difference is that Sunday River has unlimited water and compressor capacity. They can open with 24 hours of snowmaking. Loveland takes forever to put down the equivalent amount of snow and they do it on a trail that is so wimpy that it's not worth bothering with. Never experienced A-Basin early season.
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Re: They're making snow in the East this morning

Postby EMSC » Mon Oct 11, 2010 11:38 am

Geoff wrote:The difference is that Sunday River has unlimited water and compressor capacity. They can open with 24 hours of snowmaking. Loveland takes forever to put down the equivalent amount of snow and they do it on a trail that is so wimpy that it's not worth bothering with. Never experienced A-Basin early season.


The first is not quite true to my now wimpy western sensibilities. I'm certainly not going to defend the wimpy trail Loveland opens up first, but when they open it it has ~18" of base from edge to edge. SR and other eastern areas might open after only 24 hrs of snowmaking; but it is on 4-6" of icy, slushy gunk that is only a couple of turns wide (while still blowing it in your face). That said SR could open edge to edge much, much faster than Loveland, A-basin or any of the other Western resorts I've seen blow snow. The capacities out here are much lower on any individual trail (fewer guns per acre even at say Keystone which at least has decent total water/snowmaking capacity - aka can blow several trails at once, but each individual trail still takes a lot of time to get open with long distances between guns.)
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Re: They're making snow in the East this morning

Postby BobR » Tue Oct 12, 2010 11:00 am

I have been there two out of the last 3 opening days at the River. Last year I made it on friday 1.5 days after opening. Coverage was pretty good. I think they went two weeks without being able to make snow and still stayed open weekends right through Turkey day weekend. I can't comment about loveland, but quite a base was built to last that long. They opened pretty close to edge to edge with a mini park as well.

The key is fire power on T2 guns 15 feet apart not 75 feet or more. ya I am a homer and proud of it. :bow:
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Re: They're making snow in the East this morning

Postby Tony Crocker » Tue Oct 12, 2010 10:04 pm

BobR wrote:The key is fire power on T2 guns 15 feet apart not 75 feet or more.

I'll have to measure that distance at Big Bear sometime. In term of snowmaking capacity per skiable acre I think we came to a tentative conclusion in another thread that Hunter Mt. was the likely leader.
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Re: They're making snow in the East this morning

Postby BobR » Wed Oct 13, 2010 3:56 am

I was wrong, below is the data from the snow making section on the web site its 30 foot spacing. t2 Sunday Punch have tight spacing, lower punch know has fan guns used to fill the area quick, T2 and mid punch have towers guns.

***These are spread along 72 miles of snowmaking pipes that cover 92% of our terrain. Hydrant spacing is also a factor. Many resorts space hydrants up to 200 feet apart - meaning that each gun must cover a much larger area of the trail. Sunday River utilizes an average hydrant spacing of 85 feet - and on trails intended for early season skiing and riding, hydrants are placed as little as 30 feet apart. Wide spacing also tends to produce large "whales" of snow that must then be pushed around by groomers. This packs the new snow down and doesn't allow water a chance to seep out - resulting in hard, sometimes icy snow. By spreading snow evenly as it's made, Sunday River can generally avoid grooming new snow for at least 24 hours, allowing the snow to "cure" or dry.***


They do a snow making tour at the River. I try to do it every year and learn about the updates.

Botton line is you have to be wiling to turn on the guns. You have to be willing to do it i less than perfect conditions and for hours at a time instead of days usually to get open early, unless there is a long periord of cold. Last year we actually got 1 cold spell and then it was near the end of Novemver until we got another one.
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Re: They're making snow in the East this morning

Postby Patrick » Wed Oct 13, 2010 9:28 am

Not sure in what category you would put me, but I was at Sunday River's 2nd day after the opening (1st full day) and skied Loveland and A-Basin in late October a few years ago. :wink:

Conditions are A-Basin and Loveland were definitely more of an eastern type conditions, i.e. bring your edges, than what I encountered at SR last October.

The T2 trail is definitely more varied and steper in some part than the 2 runs that were open at LL and AB, but also shorter on vertical.

EMSC wrote:SR and other eastern areas might open after only 24 hrs of snowmaking; but it is on 4-6" of icy, slushy gunk that is only a couple of turns wide (while still blowing it in your face).


Hard to compare both experiences, as the type of skiing involved what totally different. Knowing a major of poster here, I would think that most of them would have prefered what I had at SR versus my 3 days in Colorado's WROD. As for myself, I had fun at both. EMSC coming from a racing background, would probably be like me and find Loveland pretty good also.


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Talking about any quick openings at R, Bob can you tell me more on SR's plans? What are the odds of an October liftserved turns prior to Halloween weekend this year? October is also a minefield of commitments. I know snow is on the radar, but don't think it going to make down to the River in the next few days.
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Re: They're making snow in the East this morning

Postby BobR » Wed Oct 13, 2010 9:48 am

Pretty tight lipped at the River. I really don't think they are competing with anyone. They will open as soon as they can. Sure they would like to be the first open, but goal is more to open when they can. Others have an elevation advantage.

They tend to say little and try to over deliver. I have asked for opening day off again this year. I just don't know when. O:) My opinion they will be open before Haloween. It depends on the Weather. I think they would be open this Sat if they could.
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Re: They're making snow in the East this morning

Postby Geoff » Wed Oct 13, 2010 5:07 pm

EMSC wrote:
Geoff wrote:The difference is that Sunday River has unlimited water and compressor capacity. They can open with 24 hours of snowmaking. Loveland takes forever to put down the equivalent amount of snow and they do it on a trail that is so wimpy that it's not worth bothering with. Never experienced A-Basin early season.


The first is not quite true to my now wimpy western sensibilities. I'm certainly not going to defend the wimpy trail Loveland opens up first, but when they open it it has ~18" of base from edge to edge. SR and other eastern areas might open after only 24 hrs of snowmaking; but it is on 4-6" of icy, slushy gunk that is only a couple of turns wide (while still blowing it in your face). That said SR could open edge to edge much, much faster than Loveland, A-basin or any of the other Western resorts I've seen blow snow. The capacities out here are much lower on any individual trail (fewer guns per acre even at say Keystone which at least has decent total water/snowmaking capacity - aka can blow several trails at once, but each individual trail still takes a lot of time to get open with long distances between guns.)


I've skied enough Killington opening days to chuckle at this poor memory of how much snow gets put down by a traditional compressed air and water gun. Pick Sunday River or Killington.... 24 hours gets you a foot of base pretty much edge to edge on T2 or Rime. That's enough to open. If snowmaking was as poor and slow as you describe, eastern mountains would struggle to get a half-dozen trails open for Christmas. Killington can blow Ovation, Superstar, or Outer Limits in 3 days. Those are rocky 33-35 degree slopes that take 5 feet of base to be skiable.
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Re: They're making snow in the East this morning

Postby EMSC » Thu Oct 14, 2010 10:15 am

Geoff wrote:in 3 days. Those are rocky 33-35 degree slopes that take 5 feet of base to be skiable.


I agree with the ~3 days to open number, and for a trail or even 2 at K or SR with super close hydrants maybe even as short as 2 days for halfway decent coverage. But I still don't buy the 'open on a foot of base edge to edge within 24hrs' claim (if so, why do they continue to blow snow in everyone's face if the coverage is that decent). You'll have to prove it out to me; when the Big K starts making snow and is open in 24 hrs or less with 12"+ wall to wall coverage (pics or vid please).
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Re: They're making snow in the East this morning

Postby Tony Crocker » Thu Oct 14, 2010 11:51 am

My view is somewhere between Geoff's and EMSC's. I had the opportunity to ski Killington on November 7, 1993. 3 trails were open, each served by a separate chair, with walking and/or downloading among them: Upper Cascade (on the old double), Lower Bunny Buster and Superstar. The former 2 trails were close to edge-to-edge, but I recall a choke point near the bottom of Bunny Buster that became very hard-packed with skier traffic. Skier density was far too high to really "let go" with GS type turns anywhere on Bunny Buster. Superstar was on its second day of the season, and its snow was good quality. Coverage was not wall-to-wall and certainly not 5 feet, but it was wide enough and there were no rocks showing where anyone was skiing. I was impressed because I had never seen snowmaking on a run like that in early season. However, I doubt any more than a couple of turns of Superstar exceed 30 degrees. Its pitch strikes me as quite consistent except for a short runout at the bottom. The lift (3395 ft. long, 1173 ft. vertical) averages 20.2 degrees.
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Re: They're making snow in the East this morning

Postby Admin » Thu Oct 14, 2010 11:54 am

You recall incorrectly. The pitch is quite moderate until the bottom, which is rather steep and likely 30 degrees, not a runout.

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