Snowmaking operations at New England ski resorts are vital, as we can not always count on Mother Nature to deliver the goods when we need it. This season's start up was a bit frustrating as you need cold temperatures to make snow. November was dreadfully mild and we did not get into a good range of temperature until the very end of the month. Of course, with today's frigid sub zero temperatures, we quickly forget about the mild November. Another important ingredient to snowmaking is electricity. This week alone we have experienced three power outages. When this occurs, the crew scrambles to open valves to drain the lines and shut the system down. Any hesitation in the process can mean frozen lines, hoses and guns and a long period of time without snowmaking. Fortunately, the guys were on their game and we avoided a freeze up but, with three outages we did loose valuable hours and, in one case, a whole day.

So enough of the past, we have just moved guns from the Green Weaver to Royal Tiger. The Green Weaver is buried in a very deep base of machine made snow. That trail will open tomorrow from top to bottom, after some extensive grooming today and tonight. We will do the same in South Branch. We will stay until we have a deep base for the groomers to work. We will likely be in South Branch for a couple of days before we move to Green Hornet and Royal Coachman. You might ask, why so long? At Saddleback we do not "dust & run" to get a big trail count. Our big fan guns are cumbersome to move and we do not want to go ever go back. So, we bury the trail with a deep base, then the groomers have tons of material to work, smooth and produce that lovely corduroy that we all enjoy. Our philosophy is quality not quantity. We believe that is what you want too. I hope that you can get to Saddleback soon to see how nice these surfaces are first hand! If you would like to contact me, send your thought to cklefos@saddlebackmaine.com .