Objectives and Solutions
One of Vermont’s premier ski areas has completed its most recent snowmaking expansion with the addition of 150 new SMI® PoleCat SnowtowersTM– bringing the total to 251 of these powerful fan snowmakers.
Thanks to the capacity of the SMI PoleCat’s highly efficient designs, Mount Snow, now owned by Vail Resorts, was the first Vermont ski area to open for the 2007-2008 season with top-to-bottom skiing and a terrain park from that first day. And the resort stockpiled so much snow that slopes were open until April 27th.
In addition to pursuing high volumes of snow in as short a time as possible, energy efficiency and environmental responsibility were foremost among Mount Snow’s objectives. “Our goal was to make more snow per hour, but to do it in fewer hours than previous years,” commented General Manager Kelly Pawlak.
“We also wanted a smaller environmental footprint,” she added. “All 251 of these units have onboard compressors, allowing us to completely eliminate our 16 diesel compressors this year and avoid using about 200,000 gallons of diesel fuel per season.”
SMI’s snowmaking equipment gives Mount Snow the ability to ensure a lengthy season with excellent snow quality, despite wide fluctuations in natural snowfall in recent years. Although the area didn’t see its first snowstorm of the 2008-2009 season until mid-December, there was terrain open as early as October 17th, thanks to the extensive snowmaking capacity. Mount Snow currently has SMI machines covering about 60% of its 488 acres of trails.