Ski with the Big Guns
Naturally, in the mountains we receive an abundance of snow, however Mother Nature doesn't always cooperate. High winds, intense sun, and skier usage are just a few of the factors that can wear certain snow areas thin. Man made snow is used to make a base for our opening day as well as for additional coverage throughout the season. During years when the natural snow is late in coming to the mountains snowmaking is essential! Red River Ski & Summer Area has the most powerful snowmaking system in the state. Our snowmaking capability covers a whopping 85% of the mountain ensuring that we can put snow where we need it. Red River Ski & Summer Area continues to invest into our snowmaking system each year to ensure quality skiing every winter.
Making snow requires many factors to be aligned and is as much of an art as it is a science. Artificially manufactured snow, when made properly, is as good as natural snow. Snow makers start their work whenever temperatures allow and work throughout the cold mountain evenings into the morning hours. The air temperature needs to be 28ºF or lower with optimum temperature of 10ºF being ideal. Water is pumped from the ponds at Base Camp to the Snowflake Factory next to Broadway Station where it is then boosted to any of our 102 snow guns as needed. The final step of the process sees compressed air and water mixed together then pressed through the nucleater thus making snow. The snow piles up into mounds of snow which are known as whales. Throughout the whole process the snow product is analyzed and snow guns adjusted to make the best quality snow. The best machine made snow lasts longer, holds shape better, is easier to groom, and is more economical to produce.
Once the snow is cured it's ready for snow groomers to come through and smooth the mound out with the snow cat, using the front blade to move the snow. The final step in grooming is tilling the snow making it fluffy and skiable. Through the process of snowmaking and grooming the final product makes for excellent snow coverage and enhances your skiing experience.