More Snow Faster at Ski Butternut ??“ 200% More

By AlpineZone News |
Nov 14 2007 - 03:48 PM

GREAT BARRINGTON, Massachusetts — Ski Butternut, described by SKI Magazine as “a true family mountain” and “family gem”, proudly announces a major upgrade of its snowmaking facilities, allowing it to cover its slopes with three to five-feet of man-made snow, twice as fast as in previous years.

A brand-new, state-of-the-art pump house, costing in excess of one million dollars will permit the southern Berkshire ski area to more than double the amount of water it can move through it network of snowmaking pipes. The water will be pumped to 140 snowmaking guns strategically placed along its 22 trails comprised of 20% beginner, 60% intermediate and 20% expert slopes. The new pump house will boost the volume of water shot up the hill, from 1,400 – 1,600 gallons per minute capacity the last few years to an incredible 3,600 gpm. That’s an increase of more than 200 percent.

“The more water that reaches our snow guns, the more quality snow we can make, the faster we pump it, the faster we make it, “observed Tony Bleau, Ski Butternut Mountain Manager.

“Our expert snowmakers have always done a great job of coating our trails with dry, powdery snow throughout the season,” he added, “but now they can do so much more quickly to meet our guests’ high expectations.”

He emphasized that the mountain hopes to launch this year’s ski season the day after Thanksgiving. Understandably the areas projected opening weekend is dependant on receiving a lasting blast of cold weather.

Today’s skiers are looking for quality conditions over a wider variety of terrain, earlier in the season, noted Bleu. “For us, that means we’re focused on opening as many trails as possible, as early as possible. All we need is a good long stretch of reasonably cold weather.”

How cold? The latest technology to be utilized at Ski Butternut allows the area to make fluffy white powder at 22-24 degrees Fahrenheit or below. The lower the temperature, the drier the snow that can be made, and the faster the area can pile it up on the runs.

To compliment the new pump house, Ski Butternut will deploy it’s arsenal of 110 energy-efficient, high-capacity tower-mounted snowguns. These boast an advanced snowmaking technology which uses far less compressed air than earlier snow gun models. These new snow guns complement well the mountain’s upgraded water flow and increase, significantly, the amount of snow the areas snowmakers can produce on the trail network each night.

Ski Butternut President and General Manager, Jef Murdock, emphasized that “the key to the area’s long record of success is the mountain’s commitment to offering its customers the highest quality snow conditions, coupled with an affordable skiing experience.” “At Ski Butternut, we’ve always taken pride in the quality of the snow we put on the mountain,” said Murdock. “It’s that consistency of effort, coupled with the excellent value offered through our season passes and other affordable skiing options, which makes Ski Butternut the area of choice for many skiing families from Connecticut, New York, Massachusetts, New Jersey and Rhode Island”.

The snowmaking system upgrade, which cost in excess of $1.2 million dollars, reinforces the fact that Ski Butternut keeps quality snowmaking and ski conditions a core tenet of its operating philosophy.

“We hold the same expectation as our guests, namely that our efforts should afford our skiing customers the best possible conditions, from opening day right through the end of the season,” noted Matt Sawyer, Director of Marketing.

Ski Butternut’s Mountain Manager Tony Bleu concluded, “Ski Butternut’s new snowmaking pump house and related infrastructure enhancements will help us make more snow faster!”