This MA Ski Area Is Already Making Snow For Eager Skiers
The calendar still has us in a summer frame of mind, but some winter sports enthusiasts are yearning to head back to the slopes. Those who are awaiting to par take in their favorite winter past time do NOT have to wait any further. Ski Ward Ski Area in Shrewsbury, Massachusetts (just east of Worcester) is in the process of making snow thanks to Latitude 90, a new all-weather snowmaking system.
Here's how it works: This machine uses a shipping container to make snow inside at below-freezing temperatures. The white stuff is then pumped outside as this unit has the capability to make snow when outdoor temperatures are below 77 degrees Fahrenheit. August has NOT seen hot and humid conditions (last month was a different story) therefore it is duable to achieve this task at hand. Latitude 90 states their L60 product, has the capability to pump out 156 cubic yards of snow every 24 hours. Not too shabby for the first week of August
Ski Ward is among only a handful of ski areas in North America to own a Latitude 90 all-weather snowmaking machine. two other resorts, Spring Mountain Adventures in Pennsylvania and Kelly Canyon out west in Idaho also have similar adopters where they can give area skiers a head start thanks to this ingenious device.
But don't get your equipment ready just yet. Ski Ward has not officially announced an opening day, as their season typically begins in late-November or early-December, conditions permitting. But remember, this is New England and we have seen our share of early snowfalls. Remember, it's Mother Nature's call. We'll keep you posted.
Statistics show the current Latitude 90 machines don't make enough snow to completely transform a resort's snowmaking capabilities, but there is value in making snow on demand even in above freezing temperatures as this equipment patches up thin spots throughout the season, and keeps high traffic areas like bunny slopes and tubing hills covered no matter how warm it gets throughout the winter. Their impact can especially be felt at small ski areas with low annual snowfall totals.
Here is a synopsis of what you should know about Ski Ward Ski Area: Their trail map is vertical at 220 feet with a total of 9 trails, 4 lifts and can produce man made snow plus they have night skiing available for those who prefer to perfect their craft after the sun sets. For more details, check out their web site by going here.
BOTTOM LINE: The question remains: Will more ski areas adopt this technology? We'll have to wait and see.
(Some information obtained in this article courtesy of www.powder.com)
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