This sounds like a horrible idea
11 posts
7 users
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itdoesntmatter
5 months ago
Member since 01/17/2007 🔗
129 posts

Making snow from waste water?  I can't help but think of all the times where the snow being blown is in your goggles and face.

https://www.menshealth.com/health/a36365277/ski-resort-montana-yellowstone-club-sewage-snow/

marzNC - DCSki Supporter
5 months ago
Member since 12/10/2008 🔗
2,544 posts

It's not exactly taking sewage and using it directly for snowmaking.  Treated waste water has been used on golf courses and for suburban irrigation systems for a while.

Big Sky is looking at options for more snowmaking water sources as well.

https://psmag.com/environment/turning-wasterwater-into-snow

The use of snowmaking in the Rockies is quite different from the mid-Atlantic.  Snowmaking is general finished by the time the Christmas holiday period starts.  Snowmakers either return to their homes (New Zealand or Australia pre-pandemic) or move on to other jobs at the resort.  I chatted with a groomer who started out by joining the snowmaking crew.  He was a bored IT specialist (from central NY) who decided to give being a ski bum a go and found his way to Alta.

mook21
5 months ago
Member since 12/30/2013 🔗
43 posts
brown snow :)
Crush
5 months ago
Member since 03/21/2004 🔗
1,026 posts

mook21 wrote:

brown snow :)

 nope - they are probably proposing grey-water ... something I am rather familiar with having been a live-aboard in the Gangplank Marina. In Florida they often use grey-water for irrigation and lawn care. You are thinking of black-water. Filtered to take out particulates, there is nothing wrong with using it and you *do* know that snowmaking basically adds dead bacteria so the ice crystal structure uses them as a kernel for growth. Oh you silly philistines !

bousquet19 - DCSki Supporter
5 months ago
Member since 02/23/2006 🔗
705 posts

Reminds me of the old slogan making the rounds when Killington examined the possibility of using gray water for snowmakiing:

Ski Killington: Where the Affluent Meet the Effluent

Woody

padjaski68
5 months ago
Member since 01/21/2016 🔗
70 posts
Arizona Snowbowl has been using reclaimed wastewater for their snowmaking. It is pumped up from Flagstaff from the sewer plants. They have a 20 year contract with the City. 
marzNC - DCSki Supporter
5 months ago
Member since 12/10/2008 🔗
2,544 posts

padjaski68 wrote:

Arizona Snowbowl has been using reclaimed wastewater for their snowmaking. It is pumped up from Flagstaff from the sewer plants. They have a 20 year contract with the City. 

 Took a long time to get all the approvals needed.  Article below is from Feb 2016.

How Arizona Snowbowl Fakes Flakes for a Longer Ski Season

Out west, water is much scarcer than in the mid-Atlantic.  In VA, both Massanutten and Wintergreen have had to deal with not having enough water for 24-hour snowmaking when a cold snap lasts longer than a couple days.  A lot of money has been spent to increase water supply.

padjaski68
5 months ago
Member since 01/21/2016 🔗
70 posts

Absolutely true Mark.  Here is a thought...how different is the molecular structure on treated wastewater to natural stream water for snowmaking. Not sure if it is still being used or not for early season snowmaking but SnowMax was added to the snowmaking system to allow bonding at marginal snowmaking temperatures. 

Sooo...testing the system at the beginning of the season is called "blowing out the mice" does it change with wastewater, lol.

Crush
5 months ago
Member since 03/21/2004 🔗
1,026 posts

marzNC wrote:

padjaski68 wrote:

Arizona Snowbowl has been using reclaimed wastewater for their snowmaking. It is pumped up from Flagstaff from the sewer plants. They have a 20 year contract with the City. 

 Took a long time to get all the approvals needed.  Article below is from Feb 2016.

How Arizona Snowbowl Fakes Flakes for a Longer Ski Season

Out west, water is much scarcer than in the mid-Atlantic.  In VA, both Massanutten and Wintergreen have had to deal with not having enough water for 24-hour snowmaking when a cold snap lasts longer than a couple days.  A lot of money has been spent to increase water supply.

💯

 

Denis - DCSki Supporter
5 months ago
Member since 07/12/2004 🔗
2,228 posts
I have been skiing the west for many years now and have never seen snowmaking.  
marzNC - DCSki Supporter
5 months ago
Member since 12/10/2008 🔗
2,544 posts

Denis wrote:

I have been skiing the west for many years now and have never seen snowmaking.  

 I get the sense you don't spend a lot of time skiing groomers at destination resorts in Nov or Dec.  :-)

Even Alta has a few fixed snow guns on the easiest blue groomers from the top of the Sugarloaf and Collins lifts to make sure that once they open there will be a way down for intermediates and adventurous advanced beginners.  Also builds up the base on those trails in anticipation of warm late season days in April.

Ski areas/resorts in Colorado make just as big a deal about the start of snowmaking as in Vermont or North Carolina.  Difference is that by late Dec, the snowmakers in Colorado move on to other jobs.

Sun Valley and Deer Valley wouldn't be nearly as popular with their target market if there wasn't any snowmaking.

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