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  1. #1
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    OT: Snowbowl to get snowmaking

    Woo Hoo! Snowbowl is back on track for expansion and snowmaking. There may still be the possibility of an appeal to the Supreme Court, but it's looking good now. I'm excited about reliable ski seasons in Flag.

    http://www.azcentral.com/news/articl...wl0808-ON.html

  2. #2
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    ...thanks for the heads up.

  3. #3
    Don't believe the Hype...
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    I won't beleave it until I see the yellow snow...
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  4. #4
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    "“Were it otherwise,” it reads, “any action the federal government were to take, including action on its own land, would be subject to the personalized oversight of millions of citizens. Each citizen would hold an individual veto to prohibit the government action solely because it offends his religious beliefs, sensibilities or tastes, or fails to satisfy his religious desires. Further, giving one religious sect a veto over the use of public park land would deprive "

    can someone explain why this logic is not applied to the serria club? One could argue they are a religion given the amount of "prostilatizing" they do.
    b

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by az_cholla
    There will be an appeal to the Supreme Court, but it's looking good now.
    fixed.

  6. #6
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    check out the comment from "SarahE"' on that article.

    smart one, she is.

    i guess she has never been to summit county, co in the early season when the only places open are the ones that do make snow.

    hopefully she isnt kidding about moving away from flagstaff!

  7. #7
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    lifts

    I've skied Snowbowl many times over 35 years but never go anymore. The lift lines are the worst, anywhere. There's only one lift to the top. If they can put in high speed lifts and increase skier capacity it's a huge win for the state. The terrain is great, way better than flat Sunrise. This doesn't hurt indian lands, at all, just makes them more money.
    The place does need new lodges and a better menu, as the food sucks.
    agmtb

  8. #8
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    Oh come on abe, doesn't everyone just LOVE an $8 greaseburger
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by abegold
    I've skied Snowbowl many times over 35 years but never go anymore. The lift lines are the worst, anywhere. There's only one lift to the top. If they can put in high speed lifts and increase skier capacity it's a huge win for the state. The terrain is great, way better than flat Sunrise. This doesn't hurt indian lands, at all, just makes them more money.
    The place does need new lodges and a better menu, as the food sucks.
    Err, I seriously doubt it. How many places do those phoenix people have to go skiing? Yeah... How many times does snowbowl CLOSE the mountain off because they are at "capacity"? You are fooling yourself if you think that wouldn't still happen with expansion. Snowmaking will be a great deal for snowbowl and for skiing in AZ, but I think you're only kidding yourself if you think it will mean less people on the mountain.

    Again, it's great for snowbowl and us, but they have a long way to go before they put a dent in the excessive demand IMO.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by abegold
    I've skied Snowbowl many times over 35 years but never go anymore. The lift lines are the worst, anywhere. There's only one lift to the top. If they can put in high speed lifts and increase skier capacity it's a huge win for the state. The terrain is great, way better than flat Sunrise. This doesn't hurt indian lands, at all, just makes them more money.
    The place does need new lodges and a better menu, as the food sucks.
    Have you seen the master plan for Snowbowl? It includes a high-speed quad up the middle in place of Agassiz, re-routing and extending the Sunset lift, extending the Hart Prairie lift, and installing a new triple or quad up and to the left (facing the mountain) of Agassiz, including some new runs off that ridge east of midway.

    It is all dependant on snowmaking though. No snow, no new lifts. If that place starts making some of that evil money there might be a chance of summer mountain bikiing...
    When the world slips you a Jeffrey, stroke the furry wall.

  11. #11
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    The improvement plan calls for 400 additional parking spaces. Also, the realignment of chair 3 to the top of Casino will help spread out the skiers that get dumped at the top and allow the chair to keep turning when the Agassiz chair is on windhold. Which happens all the time when the wind is out of the north-northeast. The new chair on the slope above Agassiz lodge will also help spread out the skiers/riders but I doubt snowmaking is going to help much there since it's all south-se facing.

    What snowmaking will really help with is keeping the base area and Hart Prairie open. HP is where they make the money. In many winters there's plenty of snow above 10,000' or so but very little at the base. I think the figure i heard was $5000/hour to turn the Agassiz chair and there's little incentive to do that if they're not making money on Hart Prairie.

  12. #12
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    Good for Snowbowl and the Flagstaff area. I enjoy skiing there, and took my son there this past winter for his first time on skis. I worked at a ski area in Summit County, CO many moons ago and have a pretty good idea on what it takes to run a ski area.

    I've gone out of my way to email and thank the staff and management there when they open on short notice. A few years ago they had pretty much no snow coming into late December, then got a few feet and opened a few days later. The coordination of getting the staff hired/back , the mountain ready, food supplies ordered, recieved and ready for sale is a big undertaking and they were able to pull it off.

    I wish them success, and they will continue to get my business.

  13. #13
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    What is Sierra Club thinking???

    Compared to far more significant environmental threats like water extraction in the Upper Verde River basin, the loss of the San Pedro river, the struggling reintroduction of the Sonoran Wolf, the impact of unmanaged ATV use, the lack of stewardship on Federal lands due to extreme budget cuts and the outright sale of public lands, the environmental impact of artificial snow making at Snowbowl is miniscule. Why is the Sierra Club burning up so much political capital trying to prevent snowmaking and the clearing of a couple of hundred acres of forest, which many outdoors people are supporting. I suspect it is a purely knee-jerk liberal reaction to the "man" trying to make some money and to show support for an oppressed minority. The Sierra Club has become an almost entirely a tactical organization (save that tree, save that rock) with a myopically-local focus. I would prefer they throw their support into efforts that would have a significant positive impact, like getting a voter initiative passed to set aside some State Trust lands before they all go to the developer with the highest bid. (I was a member Sierra Club at the time they joined the anti-snow-making lawsuit and I shared my concerns with the political chair of the Flagstaff Chapter. He really couldn't offer much of an explanation.)

  14. #14
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    It's about effing time!

    Snowbowl is a huge part of the Flagstaff economy, and any resident up there who doesn't think so is deceiving themselves. If Snowbowl has a good season, then the Flagstaff economy has a good season. If it has a dry season, Flagstaff's economy tanks. That's why I always found it so perplexing that any Flagstaff resident would be against the expansion of Snowbowl, which has to include snowmaking.

    The Indians have always been against this plan. In order to not be an environmental burden on the water tables, Snowbowl was going to use non-potable water to make the snow (just like golf courses use non-potable water to water the grass). The Indians were all offended, saying that their "sacred" mountain would, in essence, be sh!t on by using non-potable water. And yet they find it OK to allow casino gambling. I'll bet if the Indians got economic benefit by the expansion of Snowbowl, they'd be just fine with the idea.

    And of course the Sierra Club has thrown their weight against the idea...just like they have thrown their weight against EVERY SINGLE SKI AREA in the country. If it were up to the Sierra Club, we'd completey shut down all winter sports -- no downhill snow skiing, no snowboarding, no snowmobiles...nada. Only snowshoeing would be allowed. Some of their concerns are valid...but let's face it, you CAN build a large ski area without damaging the environment yet still make it economically feasible. New technology allows for waste management that harms virtually nothing. And new ski lifts are much more energy efficient and quiet.

    Anyway, I really hope this goes through...not only for the benefit of the ski season, but hopfully for some new mountain biking opportunities as well.

    Thx...Doug

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by dgangi
    It's about effing time!

    Snowbowl is a huge part of the Flagstaff economy, and any resident up there who doesn't think so is deceiving themselves. If Snowbowl has a good season, then the Flagstaff economy has a good season. If it has a dry season, Flagstaff's economy tanks. That's why I always found it so perplexing that any Flagstaff resident would be against the expansion of Snowbowl, which has to include snowmaking.

    The Indians have always been against this plan. In order to not be an environmental burden on the water tables, Snowbowl was going to use non-potable water to make the snow (just like golf courses use non-potable water to water the grass). The Indians were all offended, saying that their "sacred" mountain would, in essence, be sh!t on by using non-potable water. And yet they find it OK to allow casino gambling. I'll bet if the Indians got economic benefit by the expansion of Snowbowl, they'd be just fine with the idea.

    And of course the Sierra Club has thrown their weight against the idea...just like they have thrown their weight against EVERY SINGLE SKI AREA in the country. If it were up to the Sierra Club, we'd completey shut down all winter sports -- no downhill snow skiing, no snowboarding, no snowmobiles...nada. Only snowshoeing would be allowed. Some of their concerns are valid...but let's face it, you CAN build a large ski area without damaging the environment yet still make it economically feasible. New technology allows for waste management that harms virtually nothing. And new ski lifts are much more energy efficient and quiet.

    Anyway, I really hope this goes through...not only for the benefit of the ski season, but hopfully for some new mountain biking opportunities as well.

    Thx...Doug
    Don't forget, the White Mountain Apaches (owners of sunrise) are also plantifs in the case against Snowbowl. Someone told me that the pond they use for snowmaking at Sunrise is also non-potable water, but that's just hearsay. I guess consistent competition from Snowbowl might put their sorry ski area out of business.
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by CactusJoe
    Don't forget, the White Mountain Apaches (owners of sunrise) are also plantifs in the case against Snowbowl. Someone told me that the pond they use for snowmaking at Sunrise is also non-potable water, but that's just hearsay. I guess consistent competition from Snowbowl might put their sorry ski area out of business.
    Actually they mix reclaimed water with the pond water to spray on their slopes.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by CactusJoe
    I guess consistent competition from Snowbowl might put their sorry ski area out of business.
    Absolutely. Sunrise is the biggest piece of dogsh!t ski area there is. Any competition from any reasonable ski area will draw away scores of people. Hell, if you can figure out how to put some snow on Squaw Peak with a tow rope you'd have something to rival Sunrise.

    I grew up learning how to ski there and I always recall it being a dump. It was a dump when I was 5, and it's still a dump today. In fact, I don't think they've done anything to that craphole of a ski lodge at the base of the mountain since the early 70's when it was built.

    If it sounds like I am bitter about Sunrise, you're right. I've always had a chip on my shoulder about that place. The White Mountain Apaches have done a terrible job running that ski area and nothing has ever improved. It's such a shame, too, because anybody with reasonble business acumen can make that place into something pretty good...but apparently the Apache's don't have a knack for business.

    Thx...Doug

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by dgangi
    Absolutely. Sunrise is the biggest piece of dogsh!t ski area there is. Any competition from any reasonable ski area will draw away scores of people. Hell, if you can figure out how to put some snow on Squaw Peak with a tow rope you'd have something to rival Sunrise.

    I grew up learning how to ski there and I always recall it being a dump. It was a dump when I was 5, and it's still a dump today. In fact, I don't think they've done anything to that craphole of a ski lodge at the base of the mountain since the early 70's when it was built.

    If it sounds like I am bitter about Sunrise, you're right. I've always had a chip on my shoulder about that place. The White Mountain Apaches have done a terrible job running that ski area and nothing has ever improved. It's such a shame, too, because anybody with reasonble business acumen can make that place into something pretty good...but apparently the Apache's don't have a knack for business.

    Thx...Doug
    Okay, well then while we're on the subject...

    < rant >

    The thing that always amazed me was that at Snowbowl and even at Bill Williams (or whatever it's called these days) the folks that worked the lifts and the lodge are happy to have you there. The facilities may be old, but at least they were reasonably clean and taken care of and you are greeted with a smile.

    The lodge at the top of Apache peak has million-dollar views from the upper-level seating yet every year I can point out the same bird sh!t stains on the windows. Every year something closes due to disrepair.

    And why did they replace the chairs on the Cyclone lift with those stupid, old used ones? The old ones were newer and more comfortable.

    It didn't help that they bought all those Yan lifts in the 80's...I'm sure those cost a fortune to maintain. Google Yan lifts and check out the first few links.

    I don't get it. They are 4 hours from the 5th largest metro area in the country, have snowmaking, and still can't make it work?

    < \rant >
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by CactusJoe

    And why did they replace the chairs on the Cyclone lift with those stupid, old used ones? The old ones were newer and more comfortable.
    Um, cause the Yan chairs tended to fall off of the cable?
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  20. #20
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    A lot of unsavory comments to pour through on the "post of comment" section of the linked article, but at least this one appears to to know a little sumpin about reclaimed water.


    The Class A+ treated effluent proposed for snowmaking in Flagstaff is "cleaner" than the reclaimed water used to water the athletic fields that kids (and NAU) play on everyday, or the lower class effluent used for crop irrigation purposes. ADEQ has developed strict and specific treatment requirements for reuse applications having higher degrees of public contact, such as skiing, that include secondary treatment, filtration, and disinfection. In meeting these requirements, the reclaimed water is considered acceptable for unrestricted recreational use.

    Class A+ effluent is also used to replenish the groundwater (aquifer) supply in many parts of the country (especially Phoenix/Tucson). The soil/aquifer give the effluent the last part of a natural treatment process before the same water is pumped out and used in the potable (drinking) water system. Depending on the treatment plant process (Microfiltration, UV Disinfection, RO) the effluent could essentially leave the plant at drinking water standards like the Water Campus WRF in Scottsdale.

    The "drug cocktail" referenced earlier contains concentrations on the order of parts per billion or parts per trillion. So yes....if you were to drink a few million gallons of the effluent it would equate to taking a birth control pill (rolleyes). Food is known to contain far more endocrine disruptors, pharmacetically active compounds and hormones.

    Snowmaking is a process that stores treated effluent during "low use" periods (winter). The water is released for final treatment by nature and then reused during peak demand periods (summer). A sound practice in balancing a water portfolio.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by CactusJoe
    I don't get it. They are 4 hours from the 5th largest metro area in the country, have snowmaking, and still can't make it work?
    It's simple. The Apaches run Sunrise like a slum lord runs a tenament -- don't invest any money (other than the bare minimum amount of maintenance), and as long as you have a captive audience with no alternatives, you're guaranteed a steady stream of revenue...year after year after year.

    This philosophy works great until you have compeition/alternatives. There is a certain population in Phoenix that will ski at Sunrise no matter how sh!tty the facilities are just because they want to ski...anywhere. So as long as Sunrise has snow, they'll go (grumbling all the while about what a craphole Sunrise is).

    Now if Snowbowl doubles in size and can handle the crowds, it will pose a serious alternative to Sunrise...and then you'll see a mass exodus of skiers from Sunrise to Snowbowl. I'm sure this is why the Apache's are dead set against any expansion + snowmaking at Snowbowl.

    Sunrise is an absolute disgrace. As you said...Phoenix is a metro area of 4+ million people and there is no reason for us to have such a dump as our only "major" nearby ski area.

    God I hope Snowbowl's plans come to fruition.

    Thx...Doug

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by dgangi
    It's simple. as long as you have a captive audience with no alternatives, you're guaranteed a steady stream of revenue...year after year after year.
    Sounds like the Arizona Cardinals.
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  23. #23
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    im just waiting for the high speed quad in Humphreys cirque

  24. #24
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    well here is where we benefit. After a legnthy dinner conversation with the powers that be, it seems like DH riding at Snowbowl could be a possibility. The only thing keeping us off the mountain is a pesky enviornmental impact study, a rather costly piece. The Forest Service would not allow the impact to be piggy backed along with the one for Snowmaking. Hopefully after the improvments are phased in and the Finances are in a better state this can become reality. My advice is to continue to make noise at the Snowbowl, e-mail the marketing dept, make some noise w/ the forest service. THIS CAN HAPPEN!!!

  25. #25
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    oh yea I forgot, the new chair that is supposed to replace the sunset chair is gonna be re-ailgned to midway and be high speed. This is the perfect chair for bikes.

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