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dixon
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dixon
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PostThu Nov 25, 2021 9:21 pm 
Hiked up to Alpental's Edelweiss chair at 4400ft yesterday and experienced low snow coverage with majority of brush and rocks exposed up to the summit of Denny at 5500ft. Snowshoes were still useful to avoid descending into to exposed creeks and brush pits. I saw a few optimistic skiers booting up along Armstrong express.

I see that there are several predicted atmospheric rivers of warm rain over the next week that may wipe out some of the existing base. This time last year I believe snowpack was already several feet at this altitude as I climbed Little Kachess and recall wading through waist deep snow on the ridge. Summit West opened Dec 5th last year which is only 9 days away.

On a separate note, does anyone happen to know the status of the Summits Master plan? They proposed a gondala to the summit of Denny in 2010 along with a new lift to Internationale and replacing Edelweiss with a 4 person quad

RichP
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Randito
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Randito
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PostThu Nov 25, 2021 9:49 pm 
It's raining hard and 38 degrees right now.    Below freezing temps at the pass level aren't expected until late next week.

I skinned and skied @West on Tuesday.   The summit did a lot of brush trimming @West over the summer to allow operating with minimal snow depth.   So even with roughly just a foot of coverage I was able to ski with only two minor scrapes.

I won't be trying again until after it cools off at snow depth builds up to at least a foot at West.


The grand plans for a mountain top restaurant and gondola on the top of Alpental are IMHO a pipe dream.   The summit area is a very small, cliffs and rocky.   Massive amounts of blasting, concrete and steel would be needed to construct even a minimal size mountain top lodge,  for it to be viable,  I think it would need to be large enough to host weddings in the Summer and the investment required for that and the visual impact seem a recipe for long drawn-out court battles.

More realistic at Alpental is the proposal for a new quad "International" chair that would run from the top of Sessel to the top of Knoll 1.  This would provide good skiing above "the rain line" on lower International and Snake Dance as well as easier access to the near backcountry -- perhaps to the point of mogul formation in "Trash Can"

The master plan does include provision for a mountain top lodge on Mt Hyak.   This would far less expensive to construct that a lodge on top of Denny Mtn , but while it would have a nice view of the Gold Creek valley it would lack a view of Mt Rainier,  so it doesn't seem like a winning venue for weddings compared to Crystal's offering.


All in all I think the main point of these grand, but impractical plans it to inflate the value of the resort to the next round of investors that are going to buy it out.

I'm doubtful that huge amounts of investment will be poured into the summit given it's marginal temperature conditions and even another 0.5C raise in average temperatures will substantially reduce the number of skiing days.

dixon
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BigBrunyon
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BigBrunyon
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PostFri Nov 26, 2021 3:21 am 
The whole Snoqualmie Pass needs to find a buyer that'll come in and convert to fake snow. Really come in and change things. Time to make the switch to fake snow!! Ah hell move the hockey ice training center up there too while you're at it!!

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kiliki
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kiliki
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PostFri Nov 26, 2021 1:28 pm 
I'd been wondering how the Summit areas will deal with warming temps/less snow (in terms of remaining viable) and then saw that they are putting a bike park in at Central. I didn't know they wanted a lodge on Mt Hyak but given that they run a chairlift at Central for tourists, and that our population and numbers of tourists aren't getting smaller, I guess it's not a terrible idea for them. I've read a couple of times we likely won't be skiing there in 30 years (and of course snowmaking won't help if the temps are warm) so I imagine they are trying to diversify. At least they aren't trying to build a 90,000 sf waterpark or similar.

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dixon
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dixon
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PostFri Nov 26, 2021 6:36 pm 
Thanks a lot for the info Randito!

Glad you were able to get some turns in over at Summit West, sounds like a good strategy on the brush trimming going forward. I did see some snow making machines turned on around the beginners/magic carpet area at Summit West, not sure if that is always there or new for this year?

It does seem like those plans are a tad ambitious for Snoqualmie Pass smile.gif It's definitely a really small summit area, and seems any structure would be hard to position with the chair lift and retain access to the back bowls. I cant imagine the residents at Alpental being too happy about it either as its not like a typical Ski Resort town in which residents benefit from tourism dollars, increased land values etc. Will be interesting to see how it plays out.

I got chatting with a Lift Engineer who was working on Armstrong Express, he didn't have too much insight into the plans but said that Boyne spent a few million this summer upgrading lift electronics, components etc. since there's a backlog from the previous owners who apparently didn't invest any money on infrastructure. Fingers crossed for the "International chair", would be nice to stay above the snow line while it lasts.

Randito wrote:
All in all I think the main point of these grand, but impractical plans it to inflate the value of the resort to the next round of investors that are going to buy it out.

I think you're right. Seems like Bryce Philipps, founded of Evo is pretty invested in the Pass from a real estate perspective. The "Fire House" new co-working space/restaurant is getting ready to open and I heard a rumor he wants to put in a spa similar to Scandinave in Whistler. Makes me chuckle a bit thinking of being in a hot tub watching rigs chug up the pass in chains smile.gif Real estate values are crazy up at the pass now, those town homes adjacent to Dru Bru were sold for 550k in 2015 and one sold for 900k a few weeks back. Strangely the entire site looks unfinished and I saw that residents have temporarily moved out due to damp issues, you can see all of the fascia has been removed from the entire row of homes down to the framing.

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snoqpass
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PostSat Nov 27, 2021 12:04 pm 
dixon wrote:
I think you're right. Seems like Bryce Philipps, founded of Evo is pretty invested in the Pass from a real estate perspective. The "Fire House" new co-working space/restaurant is getting ready to open and I heard a rumor he wants to put in a spa similar to Scandinave in Whistler. Makes me chuckle a bit thinking of being in a hot tub watching rigs chug up the pass in chains smile.gif Real estate values are crazy up at the pass now, those town homes adjacent to Dru Bru were sold for 550k in 2015 and one sold for 900k a few weeks back. Strangely the entire site looks unfinished and I saw that residents have temporarily moved out due to damp issues, you can see all of the fascia has been removed from the entire row of homes down to the framing.

Those townhomes are a poor design for the pass plus they are suffering from bad choices of materials, there's also litigation that's ongoing over these issuses

dixon
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dixon
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dixon
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PostMon Nov 29, 2021 7:42 pm 
Update on snow conditions up at Snoqualmie Pass.

11/24/21

11/29/21

RichP  kitya, HikingBex
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kw
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kw
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PostTue Nov 30, 2021 6:23 pm 
Hopefully not a sign of what's to come, Snoqualmie can get some really bad snow years. Wouldn't want to replicate 2014 or 2015...

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Malachai Constant
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Malachai Constant
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PostWed Dec 01, 2021 9:17 am 
Early snowfall seldom translates into big snow pack. W will be seeing more “atmospheric rivers”. Sad to say

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"You do not laugh when you look at the mountains, or when you look at the sea." Lafcadio Hearn
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