SMI Snow Makers, a family run, Michigan based company, has set up massively technical snowmaking facilities in Sochi, Russian to make certain that there is enough snow Winter Olympics. With setup that looks more like NASA Mission Control and 400 snow guns, SMI is going to make it happen, according to this edit from National Geographic. And as these are the “most expensive Olympics” ever, we’re hoping SMI gets their monster slice.
Sixty years ago Dave McCoy got a permit to operate a ski area on Mammoth Mountain. Now, the 98-year-old icon tells a bit of the founding story. This edit is all skiing, but for Dave, we’ll run it anyway.
A Sierra resort with deep, deep roots in snowboarding gets the chance to grow more today as California’s June Mountain officially reopens for the 2013-14 season after being shuttered since 2012. Today (Friday, December 13, 2013) the resort that hosted the original OP Pro of Snowboarding is back in the game.
“June has a special place in the hearts of so many skiers and snowboarders, and I know they’re just as excited as we are that June Mountain is reopening on Friday,” said general manager, Carl Williams. “We’ve made some improvements that I think visitors are really going to appreciate. June has always been a really comfortable place to learn to ski or snowboard, and with the new programming and ticket prices I think that’s even more true today.”
It’s like Mammoth’s less crowded, cheaper, more fun little sister. . . ah, or something like that. Tickets are $72 a day and the season passes cost only $175 for college students, and $399 for adults. Hello bargains! For the official word from June Mountain, follow the jump. [click to continue…]
While the rest of the Northern Hemisphere has been slogging along through fall, the snow gods have gotten all over the Northern Cascades and dumped over 40 inches of fresh, winter snow on the shoulders of Mt. Shuksan. That means Mt. Baker Ski Area is ready to roll today, November 21, 2013.
According to Frequency The Snowboarders’ Journal it’s going to go a little like this:
With a 43-inch base at Pan Dome and 37 inches at Heather Meadows, Baker will be opening in style: all three lodges, at least seven chairs, all systems go for a pre-Thanksgiving powder feast. As always, we recommend easing into it. Plenty more snow is going to fall in the coming weeks, and early season conditions exist. Obey closed areas, be on the lookout for early season hazards, ride with care, and go get your fill—you can be sure we will.
Can you taste it? We know you can.
Nothing again Winter Park, we’ve had some good days there, but we’re pretty stoked that the SIA On-Snow Demo has moved to Copper Mountain this year on February 3-4, 2014. In fact, we’re so into it that we might even attend.
“Copper’s fantastic terrain, setting and amenities make is a great place for everyone-reps, buyers, suppliers, media, industry partners-to gather after the SIA Snow Show,” said David Ingemie, SIA president. “Whether you want to test gear for your shop, shred with your friends, or some of both – join us!”
We agree. Follow the jump for the official word from the SIA. [click to continue…]
Mammoth Mountain opened today, November 7, 2013, and kicked off the 2013-14 season in style. Guess who was on the first chair? We have no idea (the banner was in the way). But we know they weren’t a bunch of lazy ass, sleepin’ in skiers. Skiers haven’t gotten first chair at Mammoth in what a decade? The first hundred people in line got FREE lift tickets as well. That’s worth sleeping in the snow for, right? Those who made out were treated to 12-18 inches of snow, three lifts running and six runs to slide on. Wish you were there, huh?
[Link: Mammoth Mountain]
Eneliko “Liko” Smith, the man behind The Block snowboard hotels and the ensuing legal problems that arose regarding unpaid taxes, is back in the winter sports game while apparently continuing to work on the launch LV Air, an airline serving Las Vegas, Nevada.
Smith claims to have purchased Traverse City, Michigan’s Sugar Loaf Resort and plans to transform the 560-acre property into a “snowboarders’ Mecca” titled The RoK At Sugarloaf.
“This is the single biggest challenge of my life, I’m fortunate I was able to find partners that not only understand the risks involved at Sugar Loaf but also the complexity of reopening a resort that has been shuttered for over 10 years,” says Smith. “The key is getting down to bedrock on what’s required and then taking massive action…I will not let this resort waste away on my watch,” he says. “The residents and children in the region deserve a resort that will compete with others worldwide and The Rok is going to do just that.”
Some locals had been worried about Smith’s past issues, however, Smith promises “that tax payments will never be an issue again” because he “learned from that mistake.” The upside is we just may get another snowboarding reality TV show out of the deal. And that always was the best thing about The Block. For the official press release, follow the jump. [click to continue…]
The Snow Industries of America just released their 2013 Participant Study and as you might have guessed the numbers were down for pretty much everyone but those free heelers. Yeah, we see that bump in “freeski” but come on, that’s just skiing. We all know that.
Ultimately, overall snow sports participation was down 3% to 19.3M participants across all disciplines; alpine ski had a 19% drop in participation but still brought the most to the mountain with 8.2M, followed by snowboard with 7.4M, freeski with 5.4M, snowshoe with 4M, cross country with 3.3 million and telemark with 2.8M participants.
For the official release from the SIA follow the jump.
[click to continue…]
Half of Southern California snowboarding is now up for sale as the owners of Bear Mountain and Snow Summit have put the resorts up for sale according to a post in the OC Weekly.
The San Bernardino Sun, citing county tax records, reports Snow Summit was assessed to be worth $6.14 million in 2012, up from $5.93 million in 2010. Summit bought Bear Mountain for $200,000 in 2003 and that resort was valued at $5.7 million in 2012, according to the Sun.
We’re guessing with the way the world is heating up you could probably get both mountains for less that $7 million. And from the photo above it appears they’re doing their SoCal sexy marketing best to get these resorts moving. Anyone in?
[Link: OC Weekly]
Earlier this month, when Mammoth Mountain CEO Rusty Gregory told the Mammoth Lake, California Town Council that “in a few weeks Mammoth Mountain will not be run by Rusty Gregory” he was simply adding his usual flair to a less exciting story.
Truth is, while Gregory announced several changes in the management team on Wednesday, June 19, 2013, what didn’t change is the guy in the CEO position. Yes, Gregory is still CEO and that’s probably a good thing. Here’s what he said about the management changes.
“The last seven years have presented us with a series of hardships; drought, lawsuits, town bankruptcy, and global financial meltdown and the ensuing recession have left their mark on all of us,” said Gregory. “As we acknowledge the challenges behind us, it is critical now that we look to the future and recognize and act upon the opportunities that lie ahead. I believe our company and our community will not realize these opportunities by employing the visions and solutions of the past. It is time to pass the baton to a new generation of company leaders, who dare to have a new vision, possess the audacity to take risk, the guts to change the old ways, and the energy to do the hard work, with their teams, to transform the opportunities of the future into reality.”
Most of the “changes” appear to be simply adjustments to job descriptions, however, Gregory is continuing the search for a new chief operating officer of hospitality. For the official word from Mammoth Mountain, follow the jump.