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Buck Hill Mn. Opens dry slope

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

Buck Hill, a tiny Minnesota ski area located 30 minutes from downtown Minneapolis, is out to change the face of off-season skiing. Set to open for the first time later this week, the resort has designed an artificial ski slope utilizing a new surface that simulates skiing, without the snow. Owners Don McClure and David Solner traveled to Italy last year to investigate various products to fulfill their new vision for the mountain. They wanted a means to expand year-round recreational activities while also providing unique opportunities for competitive training.

“We feel this is a really big deal.We will be moving our resort from an uncontrollable four-month season to a 12-moth facility [that] may draw more people into the sport.” David Solner, Co-Owner of Buck Hill

Neveplast, an Italian company started in 1998, set out on a mission to create ski slopes from synthetic materials to imitate the sensation of skiing or snowboarding on hard pack, any time, anywhere. The material is strong enough to hold up to usual ski equipment gear, requires minimal maintenance and stays in place year round, buried under real snow in the winter months.



Lindsey Vonn, got her start skiing here, as well as four other Olympians, including Kristina Koznick, leading Ski Magazine to give Buck Hill the moniker “Legendary Capital of American ski racing.” Small even for midwestern standards, claiming less than 300 feet of vertical drop, this tiny giant proves it’s not what you have, but what you do with it that counts.

Passes for the Neveplast Buck Hill ski slopes are on sale now in preparation for the Grand Opening September 23, 2016. The season is set to run through November.

post #2 of 5

Been a little discussion in the MN thread, Posts 52-56.  Seem to be issues about heat on bases.



post #3 of 5
Great addition to another activity todo. Sure will take some time/marketing to get to get it going, but hope it works out for them. Good vision and good kids school (from personal experience).
post #4 of 5

This is probably the future of skiing. You know, for when snow is only going to be in globes and dreams.


I wonder if it's as fun to ski. Have my doubts...Year round skiing appealing though.

post #5 of 5

I have Neveplast ​and some cheap Snowflex knockoffs​ in my backyard and I have also skied Snowflex.  They are very different surfaces.  Snowflex is like tall artificial turf and needs water lubrication.  Neveplast has much thicker and shorter individual bristles and doesn't need water.  Snowflex is softer to land on, but you can only get about 30% as much edge grip as snow.  Neveplast has almost as much edge grip as snow and is great for carving turns but not so fun to fall on.  If I wanted to build a race training center I would use Neveplast, a park training center Snowflex.  Any artificial surface will rip wax and ptex off your ski bases quickly.  I would definitely recommend rental skis! 

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