Countdown to Poma's Arrival

We continue our work on Rolling Rock (for more information on this improvement, see: Rolling Rock), burying stumps and making sure our slope angle is just right. When it comes to establishing a slope's angle, we take quite a bit into consideration, like how guests will ski it (and love it), how a snow cat will handle the trail, how we'll manage the snow. Once all of the trees were cleared out, we got a good lay of the land and most of Rolling Rock has a nice fall line; some parts are getting re-sloped. 

One thing is for certain: this trail will be awesome.

The new Rolling Rock could be great terrain for race teams as they train at Sipapu: the new terrain is fairly steep, fairly wide, and a solid intermediate trail. Plus, this part of the mountain is not used very much, which will make it attractive to teams (or our guests who want to feel like they have the mountain to themselves). We don't anticipate making snow directly on this trail because it holds the snow really well, much like Butterfly, Howdy and Beep-Beep. We will, however, make snow above and below that trail - so the infrastructure is there, should we need it.

We're heading into our final days before Poma arrives, and it is looking very good around here. All stumps are off the lift line from the top Bullwheel to Tower 2, and all that's remaining are slash piles. Once Poma arrives, we'll start digging and getting ready to pour concrete for our tower foundations.

Trees coming down the mountain. We use trucks and a dozer to haul slash piles.

Last weekend, Sipapu was proud to host the Summer Slam disc golf tournament, and one of our regulars, Marcos Castillo, took home first place. Congratulations to everyone who participated in the sold-out tournament, the Summer Slam organizers and especially to Marcos. For a re-cap of the event, be sure to read this week's Taos News article.

Sipapu Summer Slam champ Marcos Castillo. Photo courtesy of Gabriel Weinstein, Taos News.

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Rolling Rock

With the addition of our new lift (see Introducing a New Lift!), we are not only getting a new trail (for a photo of the new trail, see Getting Ready for Poma), we are also making several modifications to some of our existing trails, including Thunder Bunny, parts of Butterfly and Rolling Rock. Over the last few days, we've been focusing our efforts on Rolling Rock in particular. Next winter, you'll see the most change at the top of Rolling Rock, above Bambi. While we're not extending this trail, we are creating a new route - one that is wider than the original. I skied this area last winter, and the new terrain offers an incredible fall line - it was a lot of fun, and I think you'll like this new addition to the terrain.

Rolling Rock, looking uphill

Rolling Rock at the intersection of Bambi

After Poma's most recent survey (which went very well - see: Poma Returns), we continue to move brush and log piles off the mountain. We're getting the mountain clean and ready for this weekend's sold-out Summer Slam disc golf tournament and, of course, for Poma's next visit, which is tentatively scheduled for the third week of July. Stay tuned for more updates!

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Poma Returns

Leitner-Poma, our lift manufacturer, returned this week to walk our new lift line and complete one more survey for their engineering report. I'm pleased to report that we were ready for them: all stumps were removed all the way to our future Tower #4 and the line was completely clear, minus the remaining slash piles. Now, thanks to Poma's visit, we know where our future tower foundations will be located. Next, as we wait for the lift construction to begin (which is slated for late July/early August), we'll continue to prepare the mountain by clearing slash piles and moving dirt as the engineers have requested.

While trail clearing has been ongoing, our team has been extremely committed to keeping our world-class disc golf course clean and open (all of our 20 baskets are open - click here to read more about which pads are currently closed). Word on the course is that the construction is not diminishing our course's renowned reputation for being a challenging one to play. As a matter of fact, thanks to the fewer trees on our lift line, discs are often rolling further down the hill (rather than coming to a rest after bumping a tree). Around here, we call this the Sipa Roll!

Other mountain projects are ongoing. For example, we just finished adding this cage to the back of one of our snow cats, which will allow us to haul more up the mountain. This will be especially handy during snowmaking season - which begins 18 weeks from now!


Our snowmakers are pretty excited about this new cage on the back of our snowcat.
We'll haul a lot of snowmaking equipment with this!

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Getting Ready for Poma

Our team continues to make outstanding progress with the tree clearing project as we prepare to build our new lift. At this point, over 90% of the stumps have been removed, and we've got several slash piles on the ground, ready for skidding. Our goal is to have the cooridor for the new lift ready for Poma's next visit, which will happen next week. Poma will do their final survey during this time. On their following visit after next week, Poma and their team will begin building our new lift. We're excited and eager for this next phase.

Making progress. This June 10, 2015 photo shows the work that's been done to date on the new lift line trail (pictured right).

We refer to this project as our "pick up sticks" work because that's what we're spending a lot of time doing: picking up downed trees, limbs, debris, and rocks. But while this "pick up sticks" project is a big one for us, it's part of what we do around here. Our founder, Lloyd Bolander, was a big believer in keeping his trails as debris-free as possible. Legend has it, he wanted to be able to ski his mountain on a heavy frost, so his philosphy was to keep Sipapu's trails pristine. We're following his footsteps (or ski tracks, however you want to look at it) because, like him, we want to be able to ski and snowboard on a heavy frost, too.

Certified straw for silt fencing and revegetation projects during the lift construction. You're looking at 664 bales here, and we'll need two more of these deliveries before the summer is over.

Sipapu's disc golf course is still in full swing (and we are preparing for the upcoming Summer Slam tournament on July 11). As a reminder, here are the tee pads that are currently closed, due to the lift construction project:

Recreation Pad #1
Pro and Advanced Pads #2
Advanced and Recreation Pads #5

These pads will be closed indefinitely as we complete the lift construction, but all baskets and the remaining pads are open and ready to play!

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