Thursday, May 29, 2008

Da Bears Woke Up

We were beginning to wonder where all our Powderhorn bears were. With all the snow they've shown up a little later this year. But this week we've seen them crossing through campus here and there. Justin Jansen, one of our mountain guys and groomer extraordinaire, snagged a few pictures today.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Random Facts: Chairlifts

Have you ever been riding a ski lift and wondered how it holds all that weight? Especially after we all had those cheeseburgers for lunch? Or have you ever wondered how the cable stays on track? Here are some random facts about the operation of a chairlift.

The sag in the haul rope between towers is called catenary.

There is a counterweight attached to the bullwheel which keeps the correct amount of tension on the haul rope.

Load Tests typically involve putting on more weight than the lift would sustain in normal operation. The lift's capacity to start, stop, and prevent rollback is tested.

There is an auxiliary motor that runs on gas or diesel to allow the lift to run in the event of a power failure or problem with the main motor.

A brittle bar is located on the towers and is connected to a safety circuit. It will detect a cable coming off the wheels and automatically shut the lift down. A brittle fork is located on the counterweight. Basically if anything touches them they will break- causing the safety circuit to open and the lift to stop.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Plateau Creek Pictures

Some shots of Plateau Creek taken yesterday...

The I-70 eastbound lanes bridge at the confluence of Plateau Creek and Colorado. The water has a few feet to go still.

Thursday, May 22, 2008


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Flood Watch

While driving to work this morning we saw a man building what looked to be a large ark. But I'm not going to get worried until I see animals forming lines and heading his direction.

All of the Grand Valley is under a flood watch this week due to the 80-90 degree temperatures. Our total snow count (including pre and post season) is up to 350 inches. We've seen a lot of melting this week here at the mountain. If you've been following our webcam, no doubt you've noticed as well.

NOAA is currently reporting the Colorado River at Cameo to be around 11.6 feet. Flood stage is 12 feet. The water still has a few feet to go before it causes problems for the I-70 bridge at the confluence of Plateau Creek and the Colorado. Check back tomorrow we'll post pictures of Plateau and Debeque canyons.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Calling All Artists

We have some booth space still remaining for the first ever Flat Top Fest sponsored by Grand Junction Subaru! So if you're one of those talented people we all wish we could us!

When: August 10th
Where: booths will be placed around the base area near the deck
Event: Full day of live music, games & activities for kids, BBQ, biking, hiking, disc golf, brunch at Wildewood Restaurant, Alpine Trader open
Cost: $120
What's in it for me?: Opportunity to sell your work
Requirements: Work must be handmade and unique (my finger paintings did not qualify though)

Contact April Nichols at 970-268-5168 or

Monday, May 19, 2008

It's Melting!

This weekend's temperatures made quite the difference:
Thursday, May 15

Monday, May 19

Photos of the day: Hummingbirds are back!

Thursday, May 15, 2008


May 15, 2007

May 15, 2008

May 15, 2007
We were already hiking all over the mountain!

May 15, 2008
You can still ski the majority of the mountain!

Here are a couple random photos taken today

The cornice on Palisade point

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Find us on Facebook

Are you on facebook? It's only the coolest thing since....whatever the last coolest thing was. If you're a member though, come be a Powderhorn "fan". You can check out pictures, videos, hear about events, and help us choose new run names.

Find us here

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Tennis Match

It's like watching a tennis match up here. Spring, winter, spring, winter...

Approximately 8 inches overnight!

Take a look at the webcam

Update: I just heard one our mountain guys on the radio report from our snow stake. 12" new snow and the base is 42". Pretty darn impressive for May!

Monday, May 12, 2008

Big Sur

Is this the year that Big Sur will show up on the Colorado River? The Big Sur of Colorado appears when the river hits 20,000 cfs and above. It also needs the roller dam gates to be open. But if these conditions combine, kayakers from all over the state will be building a refugee camp at Island Acres. Big Sur offers "six-foot waves that are hundred feet long host holes, surfs, and cartwheels all in one spot, with good eddies on both sides" according to

According to NOAA, the Colorado is already at 20,000 cfs at westwater. Of course that's after the Gunnison joins. But with all the snowpack still around (and with more on the way) it's looking good. Kayakers rejoice!

If anyone knows the link to find the cfs readings in Debeque Canyon, let us know!

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Mother's Day

If shopping for Mother's Day gifts is either a) the #1 thing you procrastinate this time of year, or b) sends you into a cold sweat at Hallmark....we have an easy solution for you. Moms like quality time. Most Moms we know also eat from time to time.

Mother's Day Brunch- Sunset Grille
Kids (4-10) $7.95
Adults $18.95
Seniors (55+) $15.95

Includes mimosa or a trip to the bloody mary bar.
Plus, Moms get 20% off at the Alpine Trader!

So if you were thinking of buying any of the following, bring Mom to brunch instead.

Cross-stiched "LOVE" pillow
Box of chocolates on sale at Walmart
Candles or bath salts
Coffee mug that says "#1 MOM"
A Dirt Devil

Monday, May 05, 2008

Cinco de Mayo

Happy Cinco de Mayo! Otherwise known as Margarita Day!
Besides all the busting pinatas and sipping are some of the things going on around the mountain today.

Although we can see dirt for the first time, some people are still taking advantage of all the snow

I found a snowboard that has been buried for who knows how long. No was a rental

It's pretty amazing that we still need a snowcat to get around!

The critters are showing up more and more everyday

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Sucker Punch

It seems winter and spring are duking it out lately....and today winter has landed a sucker punch. It was 60 degrees up here yesterday and we began to see dirt for the first time. But winter wasn't having any of that. A couple inches of new snow has fallen already this morning and we could get up to seven. Maybe spring will now fight back with 80 degree temperatures tomorrow....let's see what happens next!