Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Final preparations for a great season!

The first cold snap of the fall season is upon us and we have seen some snowflakes in the air on the summit. The old adage is if you see snowflakes on October 8th, then it is going to be a great ski season! There is a lot going on around the resort. Last minute painting is being done in the lodges, packages are arriving of new ski boots and winter wear and the mountain crew is hard at work getting the slopes, trail, lifts and equipment ready.

Yesterday saw the arrival of 42 new SV-10 Snow guns direct from HKD snowguns. These new guns are part of our capital expenditures this summer and will be used on trails like ower World Cup, Lower Arrow, Upper Arrow and the base area. These marginal temperature guns will allow us to help get open earlier season and sustain the surfaces on those trails all season-long.

Some more important work is being done in our lift maintenance department. Every 7 years, the State of VT requires each chairlift to be "load tested". This entails putting 110% of the maximum weight capacity in the chair and running the lift on electric and diesel power. We are also required to check the brakes with the lift going in reverse. The weight is provided by water in plastic bags and cardboard boxes. (We don’t use staff or disgruntled guests)! Once passed, the lift is officially put into service. This week we are testing the Glades Peak, Morningstar and Black Ridge Triple chairlifts.

Opening day is scheduled for Saturday November 17th. Snowmaking will begin in early November as we begin to see a string of cold weather. Reminder: daylight savings time takes effect on Sunday Morning November 4, 2012.

So, we're ready to make snow when the temperatures drop so stay tuned. As I've mentioned before... Calvin the Catamount is predicting 176 inches for the season. I hope he's right!

Bruce Schmidt
Okemo GM

P.S. I'm also told our brand-new four season website is just days away from launch - so stay close to to be one of the first to check it out!