Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Grooming Report

Dave groomed this AM, and there are now classic tracks!

Grooming Report 12/31/08

Big Dave groomed and pulled out "Big Red," our biggest, heaviest, drift buster/crust buster/foot traffic posthole filler/dog poop cleaner-upper and trail leveling grooming implement that we have. We don't use it that often, as we usually end up getting stuck with it somewhere on the system, even when it hasn't just recently snowed. I guess Dave got stuck once today, so the pattern holds.

Anyway, the trails had been taking a beating with the massive amount of foot/snowshoer/dog traffic, so they needed some love. They also desperately needed the classic track set, which was also accomplished. Things should be good for tomorrow.

Everyone be careful tonight and have a Happy New Year.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Seeing the Light! report 12/29/08

SWNSC is definitely short on grooming staff! A barrage of storms like that really shed light on that situation...

Anyway, the trees have been cleared and the trails (most of them anyway) have been packed and bladed. Some of the cutoffs and the outer meadow will have to wait for another day.

The Pajarito Mountain ski area is open all during the holidays, so the road is plowed. Bear in mind that the road still remains snow-packed and icy in places, especially the last mile, as is the parking lot. Front-wheel and all-wheel drive vehicles seem to be doing OK.

Looks like a stretch of nice weather for a while. We'll try to get the classic track set soon this week.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Windy (and a little snowy) 12/26/08

The winds are a'howlin' out there. The beautiful blading that was done the night before looked nice except for all of the tree debris and abundance of blow-down trees. There are several of them, mostly on the early stages of the trail system (both upper trails and lower multi-use road).

It is also snowing on and off, sometimes really hard for a period, so the trail is still very soft. It's skatable, and with it being so soft, skiing in your own classic track works well too.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Trail Report 12/25 (evening)

Merry Christmas!

The entire main big loop (inner meadow trail included) was packed and bladed this evening in anticipation for more snow arriving tonight/tomorrow. A bunch of new snow has fallen (including today) since last week's grooming, so it has taken a while to get packed out.

Trail is wide and level, but needs to be "finish-groomed." No classic track is set, but in general, skiing is just amazing.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Grooming Report 12/24/08

Most of the tree trails were rolled last evening by Dave Wykoff. The lower Canada Bonita road trail was rolled from the grooming garage out to point P (see trail map), then up from point A, all the way up to the meadow turn-around at point L and back down on TJ's & Dave's loops (D-E-F; H-I), one pass each.

It was only roll-packed, not fully groomed, so it'll definitely be soft and there will not be a set classic track. All meadow trails are not packed yet and could use some snowshoe/ski traffic.

As of this writing, I'm not sure what the grooming plans are for Xmas day or beyond. Another winter storm warning has been posted, so here we go again.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

MORE(!) new snow 12/23/08

The snow gods are smiling on (more like laughing at...) us so far this year. The only problem is, we're short on grooming staff and can't keep up with it.

It snowed another 14" - 18" overnight and during the day today, and we got a major bag of wind to further complicate things. As of now, it's back to snowshoeing and backcountry/touring to pack a track around the trails so that we might be able to get the machines through and then maybe start grooming again.

It's forecasted to snow again starting tomorrow night into Friday, so we'll just do what we can until all of this abates.

Get out there with your touring skis and enjoy the deep snow! (and help us make some tracks on the trails in the process)

Monday, December 22, 2008

Trail Report 12/22/08

Hope everyone had a good winter solstice. I must admit, that day did seem short!

After all of my lamenting on the somewhat sad state of the skate lane, Dave W. got out there as early as he could, and dragged it smooth with the bladed groomer. He also rescued the 4' rollers and even welded the hitch back onto them!

The skate lane looked a lot better, but it's still off-camber and in need of a lot of dragging passes to get it back to anywhere near level. The classic track was well-established, but still extremely soft, especially for pole-plants.

Anyway, the season is now off and running at full speed. It is already snowing again today, so here goes another round!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Grooming report Saturday morning:

from Clay:
Well, it was a VERY long night of grooming, and I must say it isn't a pretty all. It is basically "groomed" all the way around, but there are a lot of messes everywhere and some places didn't get groomed out well due to some technical problems.

There is a classic track. It'll be soft, as I was often breaking trail while setting it. Skating will be good in some places and not so great in others. The wind was blowing, so the meadow will likely be a bit drifted in by morning.

Luckily, the snow is amazing and it's nice and cold. It will all need to be regroomed soon. At least it's groomable now. I was still sinking up to my eyeballs in some places.

Thanks to the Groomers I say! I was up there last night on my backcountry skiis and the snow was amazing. Amazingly thick, soft and cold. Based on last nights conditions and clays report I would get the touring/classics out again today and ski the hell out of the trail. It would probably be helpful to cut new lines and pack it in on the periphery as well. Here are some pics from Friday night (pre big grooming):
Typical conditions pre grooming on friday night, soft and thick:

Me (Tarik) at the top of Canada Bonita, the meadow was drifty and crusty and windy:

Dave W. helps dig out the big roller so Nick and dog can get their groom on (post sunset cell phone cam granularity):

Friday, December 19, 2008

Trail Report 12/19/08

The trail is not really "groomed" as of yet. We finally busted through the other night with the machines, but not with any grooming implements. Actually, the lower portion of the upper trails has been groomed around TJ's loop -- that's about 1.5 miles of grooming total. The rest of the trail has just been track-packed, so it's nice and skiable with a set of touring or backcountry skis.

One tree is down near the coat tree (point B on the trail system).

There are plans to get things in order over the weekend. We're short on grooming staff, so things are running a bit slow. Sorry.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

RE: Grooming report...sort of...

Scott and I spent a couple of hours snowshoeing up there this evening. Looked like someone else had been up there on snowshoes as well. Still more to be done.

Thank you, groomers!

Lisa J. Smole

Date: Wed, 17 Dec 2008 01:39:31 +0000
Subject: [Members] Grooming report...sort of...

Got up there with Nick Piazza, a club member and new groomer, and found hip-deep snow (more than two feet). It took quite a while to dig the shed out, then dig and tack a path out to the Camp May road, saw a couple of trees that were down and now buried, etc. Everything just took a huge amount of time, so not a whole lot got packed.
We attempted to go pack the trails with the machines (nothing in tow), but just submarined, even with our "fastest" snowmobile. The snowmobile got stuck 7 times in one mile! So, after a long time spent digging out, we opted to head back and hope that some folks would go out on backcountry skis and snowshoes. It's that deep. We only made it around the TJ's loop once with a snowmobile and Kermit. Nothing else got a pass -- we were first tracks on everything around noon (no one had skied up beyond that).
With some ski and snowshoe traffic, and some settling, it'll be passable.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Ski Report -- posted December 15, 2008

I got up to the Pajarito Nordic trails to ski for the first time yesterday (Sunday, Dec. 14). It was 17 degrees when I got there, and the polar jet stream must have passed overhead because it was 9 degrees when I left. My water bottle had pretty much frozen solid.

There was a good amount of new snow. It was hard to tell, because it had snowed the previous day, then gotten a little warm, then snowed again on top of that. All in all, it was over a foot for sure for the past two days.

So, the xc skiing was quite good. No one had groomed yet, but the packing job from a few nights ago (and all of the tree cutting and fence-putting up, etc.) has made things look ready to be groomed in earnest. With this new snow, it should be awesome by week's end. More snow is in the forecast, so it'll be a while before it's all truly a finished product.

There were some track-packed classic touring tracks (thanks to local club members). It was a nice day on the Pajarito Nordic trails!

I am a little bummed out that I didn't bring my camera up, not only to take pics for the blog, but to get a shot of the SWNSC shed "equipment garage." Tom and John U. got the sign and the skis mounted and it looks AWESOME!!! I love it. I'll try to get a shot of it tonight in the dark. The gleam from the cheap corrugated siding that we used should have a nice effect in a digital photograph taken in the dark.

Oh yeah, and I plan on going up with Nick Piazza to run some packing laps and get him all oriented on using the machines. We may only make it around a couple of times, as we're going to have to get a late start on things...

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Sunday snow conditions

6" new snow last night, 6" the night before, made for very nice ski touring, pretty much rock free.

No grooming yet, the guys have been too busy cutting and moving deadfall off the trails, of which there has been a lot!

Looks like grooming will begin this week.