Saturday, February 27, 2010

Weekend Grooming

Here's how Ken spent his Friday night, all for you guys!

"All groomed for skate and classic. For more details go ski it and use your CSI skills to reconstruct the session."

Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Tuesday Night Grooming Update

Denny pregroomed the deep snowfall on the trail system Monday night, and Ken and I finished off the grooming last night...about 16" new snow according to the Pajarito website. All trails groomed for skating and classic skiing. Amazing conditions!

Friday, February 19, 2010

GREAT! conditions, despite equipment problems 2/19/10

As the title says, the conditions are, "...the BEST I've ever skied since I've been skiing up at the trails!" As Chuck Calef exclaims, and he's been skiing up there for a long time.

The snow conditions are really great up there right now and the SWNSC groomers worked hard this week to clean everything up and get it into tip-top shape. The new Viking snowmobile (please donate!) is just fantastic and is the main reason we've been able to get such work done, including the new outer meadow trail addition.

Unfortunately, Chuck Calef himself, ran into problems while running the little "Kermit" snowcat -- it has something wrong with the fuel delivery system and is dying on us in some pretty precarious locations. Denny Newell went up late yesterday and rescued it back down to the garage, despite the problems.

Afterward, he and Dave Wykoff spent several hours grooming with Jennifer Sublett from the SF Nat'l Forest Service, who is working closer with the club on its mission to provide an improved winter xc skiing & snowshoeing experience in the Jemez Mountains here in Los Alamos.

John Bernardin and Tom Berg did a lot of grooming work last Monday to clean up the weekend traffic messes and left the trails primed for great grooming last evening -- thanks to those guys too.

Also, give the Espanola Ranger District (SF Nat'l Forest Service) a call to say thanks for their input on our volunteer efforts this year. They've also hired Lynn Bjorklund to help oversee recreation programs, and she has already put together a much nicer, more accurate map of the trail system -- something we did not really have until she made the effort to GPS the entire system correctly herself. Along with Jennifer Sublett's efforts, things are improving dramatically. These ladies follow the tradition of coordination between the SF Nat'l Forest Service and SWNSC that was started by Miles Standish (USFS) and Tom Berg (founder of LANSC, predecesor to SWNSC).

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Trail update

John and Tom regroomed for classic and skating Monday evening, and conditions in the woods and Canada Bonita are very good as of 5PM Tuesday. Quite cold up there all day kept the grooming well, and it should be good tomorrow, tho a warming trend is forecast for the afternoon.

Monday, February 15, 2010

East coast grooming

My mother sends this picture on of the sled hill grooming in Central Jersey during that big snowstorm they had back there.

That is pretty much the extent of the vertical in Monmouth County NJ.
This is in Holmdel Park, probably the only place I ever saw cross country skiers until I went to boston for college.

Friday, February 12, 2010

weekend grooming

Chuck Calef and Gene Dougherty did a beautiful job of grooming in the trails yesterday afternoon and last night, respectively. Set for both classic and skating on a firm base, should be great skiing for the President's Day weekend.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Grooming / Trail Report 2/9/10

Lots of new snow up there again. It was hard to tell, as it's been coming in spurts and there's already a lot there. Let's just say it was more than a simple matter of a quick grooming job and kind of a surprise to see that much more there over Sunday's new snow.

Chuck Calef decided to join the elite grooming corps (foolish man...) and got a good dose of grooming action last evening. He even groomed an entire lap by himself and did an excellent job, despite the challenges out in the meadow sections and our scaled-down lighting system for the moment. Let's give Chuck a solid round of applause and buy him a beer next time you see him!

We got the new snow knocked down and leveled with the blades, plus a round with the finish groomer (Tidd) and the classic track setter. So, the trail will be quite soft, but smooth. Classic might be the best bet until things firm up a little.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Yet more snow

Clay and new groomer Chuck Calef did a grooming orientation this evening and in the process hacked through the new load of snow.
Ran the blades to level the trail and to knock the air out of the snow.
Followed up with the classic track setter on all the main trails.
Meadow is a little rough as Chuck was initiated into the groomers group by getting stuck in new snow.
Things are soft but hey, that just means lots of snow!!! :)
Go Chuck! look for blog posts from him.

Dont forget all members can blog here and are encouraged to. Email to request an account.

Here's a long tour for you!

We just received this update on the skiability status of pipline road from Los Alamos to Pajarito, from member Dick Opsahl. Note that they snowshoed it, so they broke trail for you snowshoe members to use as well. Skiing in the snowshoe tracks Kathleen and Dick laid down for us would also be primo!

"Yesterday Kathleen Gruetzmacher and I snowshoed up the Pipeline to the Pajarito base area. It was a tough slog but we made it fine and while on the way cleared a few more windfalls. It would be a great ski down for some of you heavy duty XC guys.

Dick Opsahl"

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Trail Conditions -- Sunday PM 2/7/10

Had a chance to get up and ski again today. Lots of skiers out there on Saturday and the trails looked they had been through a war by the afternoon.

By 11:00am, there was about 3" of new snow and it was snowing off and on, not too heavily. The new snow was filling in the foot traffic craters, but the classic track was getting washy and was not looking too tidy.

The schedule calls for grooming on Monday evening, so we'll see what happens.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Saturday update and new Sponsor

Probably the best tracks of the year up there..... perfectly set tracks and tons of snow..... and the classic tracks are set right down to the trailhead bulletin board. Try to get up and ski them before Sunday's next storm covers them once again. It's wonderful to be getting so much snow this year making great skiing and snowshoeing, but it sure ups the work load for our 6 volunteer groomers.

As Dina said before, this year we're doing a big fundraising project, and we need your help with this, we're taking on a big trail grooming commitment to you, the trail user, to the US Forest Service, and to the New Mexico x-c ski community as well by taking out a big loan from LANB (thanks to Los Alamos National Bank for believing in us!) to buy our new grooming snowmobile, a big Yamaha Viking, a machine specifically designed for work in the woods.

So LANB is like a new sponsor for us (actually, this is not the 1st time, they donated a nice check some years back for one of our ski races).

Also we want to mention Santa Fe Motor Sport, the source for our Yamaha snowmobile. They too are a significant new sponsor as they managed to discount the purchase price for us by a couple thousand dollars!

So we need as many of you as can, to join or donate to the club to aid in our repayment! A typical one day trail use pass at most touring centers would cost about $10 per person for just one day's skiing. Many groomed trail systems charge $15/day or more, for grooming of the same high quality, so you can see that a SWNSC membership is an incredible bargain, and really doesn't quite cover all the costs in maintaining even a small trail system like ours.

Also, we are looking for business sponsors, and are hoping that perhaps some of you x-c regulars might help with this. If you know of (or are) an area business, perhaps you might consider asking them to join our sponsors. We can help with this, providing information about the club, it history, it's finances and activities, and provide visibility on our club uniforms and website for sponsors' ads.

In the meantime, get out and ski, it's great up there!

Friday, February 5, 2010

Grooming / Trail Report 2/5/10

Great snow on the trails. Everything except the cutoffs saw a lot of grooming passes last evening, so things are wide, level, and even pretty firm. That snow was quite dense and it got cold while we were out there, so it set up very well. The meadow trail should be a lot more smooth too.

Classic track was set on all of the main trail sections. We had a little trouble getting it set all the way up to the lower part of the meadow trail due to soft snow in the trees and a little episode of getting stuck, but it's nice everywhere else.

Looks like good conditions for blue/violet hard kick klister necessary!

Enjoy it while it lasts...looks like another round of El Nino snow by Sunday and throughout next week. Our arms and backs are taking a beating from this!!!

Weekend Trail Conditions

Dave did an awesome job packing so me and Clay made great progress. Thanks Dave!!

Clay ran Cosmo with the big blades to get the air out of the top layer and do some leveling. I followed with Kermit (yes, Kermit is back) with the 6 ft tidd. After a lap doing this we just took Kermit around and set track - Clay was the track weight for a good part of it - the track will be awesome tomorrow AM (blue, I a betting) - it was getting cold and the snow was setting up nicely.


Thursday, February 4, 2010

Thursday Evening update

Did a perfect classic workout from 2-4PM: 5" new snow on the bombproof flat base the groomers previously established from the last storm. Some good person had skiied in a perfect set of classic tracks over all the woods loops which a few later skiers had skiied in.... it skiied well and the snowy trail was just beautiful!

Around 3PM Dave appeared with the new Viking pulling the 4' Tidd and did 3 laps of packing,; Dave planned to skate a few laps afterward, and Clay and Denny are planning on grooming this evening. I predict that by tomorrow the 3 of them will have made the best tracks and skate grooming of any year in memory... but we'll let Clay post about that tomorrow.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Fundraising and 501c3 status

Hi everyone,

Alright, we are back in NM and finally have internet, cell reception AND are almost caught up on 10 days worth of work and club emails... Btw, Vermont was great but shocking number of people up there seem to think that NM is part of Mexico....

To clarify on my last (somewhat frantic :) post regarding new snowmo and the new happenings with the club:
1. Fundraising: we have not started this officially yet due to our 501c3 status. We expect to begin this effort in March (see below).
2. 501c3 tax exempt status. Our status is pending. They quoted us 90 days for the process and we have less than 30 days left. We will update you in the next 4 weeks.
3. MEANWHILE: When our 501c3 status is granted it will be effective back to Dec 2009. So you could donate now if you feel comfortable. We have had some donations already that are counting on our 501c3 coming through.

Thanks for your support! One thing that was cool to see in Vermont is how many different age and ability skiers there are. EVERYONE seems to xc ski! People up there are willing and do routinely drive quite a ways to get some skiing in! Hopefully, with all your support and efforts our local nordic culture here will keep growing and expanding with lots more good skiing and fun for everyone! We certainly have the snow and trail location for it!! :)
Btw, thanks so much to all those who donated already just as their yearly support - we cant do it without you!!