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Arizona Snowbowl may soon be "Arizona Man-Made Snowbowl"

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 

On Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court decided not to review an appeals court decision in favor of Arizona Snowbowl making snow. Therefore, the appeals court opinion stands. The ski area and the U.S. Forest Service have been in court for years against several local Native American tribes and environmental groups. Arizona Snowbowl is on sacred land for the Native Americans. The ski area wants to use recycled wastewater-- that contains 0.0001% human waste-- to make the snow. Therefore, in the Native Americans' view, it's literally like sh_tting on their sacred land. The court didn't agree though, so the snowmaking will likely go forward-- although not in time for the 09-10 season.

 

An interesting case-- more details at http://tinyurl.com/lw9jzv

For any legal mind types out there, the appeals court opinion document is at http://tinyurl.com/krhsdp

post #2 of 17

 

I'm glad that went in favor of Arizona Snowbowl.  I'm not against setting aside some land for the Indian's religious needs, but their claim over the ski area seemed unreasonable IVO other long standing public interests in that particular mountainside. The use of reclaimed waste water for snowmaking is good conservation and has been practiced at a major ski area near me for years (Seven Springs PA). The modest proposed expansion of trails, lifts, and snowmaking infrastructure seems reasonable and warranted given the precedent of ski ops at the site, demand from Flagstaff populace, and erratic local weather.  Snowmakers in my region would love to work with the 2300' of vertical that mtn has.

post #3 of 17

Here is an interesting tidbit -

 

Arizona Snowbowl is the second-largest ski area in the state at 777 skiable acres. The snowmaking plans cover approximately 205 acres, or 26 percent of the ski area's terrain. The state's greatest vertical drop of 2,300 feet goes from an elevation of 9,200 feet at the base to 11,500 at the summit.

 

Slightly larger than Arizona Snowbowl in area, Sunrise Park Resort offers 800 acres of skiing with a vertical drop of 1,800 feet. Located in the eastern part of Arizona, Sunrise has similar annual snowfall totals to Arizona Snowbowl, but the area does have snowmaking on 80 acres, or 10 percent, of its terrain.

 

Sunrise Park Resort is owned and operated by the White Mountain Apache Tribe, a Native American tribe that was a plaintiff in the litigation against Arizona Snowbowl.

 

 

 Edit: Just FYI - Sunrise consists of three mountains, and seems a lot larger than 800 acres. I think they goofed on that. Also - Sunrise doesn't allow tree skiing, but Snowbowl does. Sunrise has a few more difficult trails...

 

 


Edited by dwoof2 - 6/13/2009 at 06:56 pm GMT
post #4 of 17
Thread Starter 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by dwoof2 View Post

Here is an interesting tidbit -

 

 

 Edit: Just FYI - Sunrise consists of three mountains, and seems a lot larger than 800 acres. I think they goofed on that. Also - Sunrise doesn't allow tree skiing, but Snowbowl does. Sunrise has a few more difficult trails...

 

 


Edited by dwoof2 - 6/13/2009 at 06:56 pm GMT


800 acres is the figure that's generally given. I have a call into the resort to double-check though. It may be as you said that they don't count the tree areas, so the SKIABLE terrain figure is fairly low despite being spread over three mountains.

 

Edit: I heard back from Sunrise-- it is indeed 800 acres of skiable terrain.


Edited by Wags - 6/15/2009 at 02:00 am GMT
post #5 of 17

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by dwoof2 View Post

Here is an interesting tidbit -

 

Arizona Snowbowl is the second-largest ski area in the state at 777 skiable acres. The snowmaking plans cover approximately 205 acres, or 26 percent of the ski area's terrain. The state's greatest vertical drop of 2,300 feet goes from an elevation of 9,200 feet at the base to 11,500 at the summit.

 

Slightly larger than Arizona Snowbowl in area, Sunrise Park Resort offers 800 acres of skiing with a vertical drop of 1,800 feet. Located in the eastern part of Arizona, Sunrise has similar annual snowfall totals to Arizona Snowbowl, but the area does have snowmaking on 80 acres, or 10 percent, of its terrain.

 

Sunrise Park Resort is owned and operated by the White Mountain Apache Tribe, a Native American tribe that was a plaintiff in the litigation against Arizona Snowbowl.

 

 

 Edit: Just FYI - Sunrise consists of three mountains, and seems a lot larger than 800 acres. I think they goofed on that. Also - Sunrise doesn't allow tree skiing, but Snowbowl does. Sunrise has a few more difficult trails...

 

 


Edited by dwoof2 - 6/13/2009 at 06:56 pm GMT



 

Just proof positive that Indian poo is sacred, whereas us white folks' is not....

post #6 of 17

So, is there some kind of huge fine out there if someone gets caught skiing off piste to take a piste?

post #7 of 17

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by crgildart View Post

So, is there some kind of huge fine out there if someone gets caught skiing off piste to take a piste?



 

Tee-hee!

I think I'd prefer hearing wild "piss off piste" stories to another helmet thread any day!

post #8 of 17

Gives a new meaning to 'don't eat the yellow snow'.

In this case, don't eat ANY snow :)

 

ickkk

 

post #9 of 17

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by dwoof2 View Post

Gives a new meaning to 'don't eat the yellow snow'.

In this case, don't eat ANY snow :)

 

ickkk

 

Didn't think of that at first but there are many young kids who eat snow in lessons and  while playing . The really young ones eat snow the most.  That can't be a good thing.

 

post #10 of 17
Thread Starter 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by GarryZ View Post

 

Didn't think of that at first but there are many young kids who eat snow in lessons and  while playing . The really young ones eat snow the most.  That can't be a good thing.

 

 

That argument about kids eating the snow actually was brought forward by the plantiffs. If you go through all the legal briefs-- I believe it mentions that argument in the actual court opinion-- the second link below.

 

Kind of funny. Of course, if you're swimming in a lake or the ocean and you swallow a little water, aren't you probably getting a little fish pee and poop in there.

 

If I'm not mistaken, I believe there are other ski areas that already use "reclaimed water." I've heard that it's actually a more "green" environmental way to do it.

 

An interesting case-- more details at http://tinyurl.com/lw9jzv

For any legal mind types out there, the appeals court opinion document is at http://tinyurl.com/krhsdp

 

post #11 of 17
You can see a detailed plan of the expansion on Snowbowls website now.  The area is getting about some new runs, new highspeed lifts, a half pipe, more parking, an expanded lodge, and a few other nice amenities.  The manmade is going to make a big difference in the season length and also in being able to open for the holidays.  See you guys on the mountain, can't wait to see the cannons launching snow!  If you have any questions feel free to contact us at.  
www.flagstaffskiandsnowboardrental.com
post #12 of 17
I can't find it the info on their website. Can you add a link?

Thanks

 

Dave

 p.s.

never mind

http://www.arizonasnowbowl.com/resort/trails_lifts_expansion.php

I hope one of them will be a detachable quad. :)

 

post #13 of 17
Interesting.
The San Francisco Peaks are beautiful esp. given the high desert conditions of the Flagstaff area - well most of Northern Arizona. In the foothills of those mountains you can walk around and pick up pieces of indian pottery that are literally lying on the ground. There's also very fine sand in that area which was (is?) used for the production of glass.

Note that the elevation of the town is over 7k feet and it's not quite flat as a pancake, but almost.  In winter they use black volcanic ash - cinders, to spread on the roads. They're also used to make cinder blocks.

I would think a bigger issue for the environment would be the use of oil less compressors for the snowmaking. A small amount of oil is present in the air - giving the dirty yellow look to most snowmaking.

There are some places that use oil less compressors - I believe Aspen is one, and Are, Sweden as in this manufacturer's article:
http://www.atlascopco.com/csus/news/applicationstories/alpine.asp
Well, the water is good enough for the Cemetery, and Public Schools:
Quote:
Does the DEIS show conclusively that use of reclaimed water for snowmaking does not present a threat to human health from heavy metals, PPCPs (pharmaceuticals and personal care products), or other organic or inorganic constituents?
,,,
The Rio de Flag Water Reclamation Facility currently provides reclaimed water for turf irrigation to the Catholic Cemetery; Northern Arizona University; Pine Canyon Golf Course; Flagstaff Medical Center; the Flagstaff Public School System; the Cities public parks, facilities, and cemetery. Reclaimed water from the Wildcat Hill wastewater treatment plant (not class A) is used for irrigation at golf courses, public parks, and for dust control at various locations in east Flagstaff.
 from:

Snowbowl DEIS FAQ

http://www.fs.fed.us/r3/coconino/publications/snowbowl/faq.shtml
post #14 of 17
Your pretty much getting the same amount of stuff from breathing air. Think about it, in photosynthesis you have water and carbon dioxide yielding glucose (sugar) and oxygen. The oxygen molecule is made from the oxygen split from the water, while the oxygen molecules in glucose are derived from the carbon dioxide. That means every time you pee on a tree or an animal urinates on your lawn or a tree somewhere in the woods that urine is being converted into the oxygen you breate.
Quote:
Originally Posted by dwoof2 View Post

Gives a new meaning to 'don't eat the yellow snow'.

In this case, don't eat ANY snow :)

 

ickkk

 

post #15 of 17
Quote:
I heard back from Sunrise-- it is indeed 800 acres of skiable terrain

Some acres are worth more to skiers than others. From Sunrise's trail map and chair ratios you can tell that it's a very flat area.   Snowbowl (which I have skied once) is about average for the West.
post #16 of 17
Tony you are right. I lived in Phoenix for five years and used to ski both alot. I always preferred the Snowbowl as it's tougher trails have much more vertical than those at Sunrise and Flag is a pretty fun town when you are in your mid twenties. The peak to the far right at Sunrise has a couple nice steeps but they are short.You go along a flat stretch for a while then hit the steep then back to a flat stretch. Must suck for snowboarders. My buddy and I used to hike the ridge at Snowbowl and make our own fresh tracks down. Way better mountain and I am glad they can improve it. It's been over ten years since I have been to Snowbowl but if I remember there was a really nice gladed trail called White Lightning or something like that. 
post #17 of 17
Its a great small mountain; a bit of an overlooked sleeper that has great steeps, trees and out of bounds terrain (don't forget a backcountry permit).  Snowmaking is the linch pin to all other mountain improvements; and they're waiting on the final-final approval.  Only need the Dept. of Ag. to send the letter to proceed is my understanding. 
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