As of April 30, 2018, we're more than halfway to our goal, with a total of $3,368,088 pledged to the Preserve Our Paradise Campaign! A huge thanks to everyone for their contributions to this effort. Of course, we've still got a lot of work to reach our ambitious campaign goal of $6,500,000, and your donation is gratefully appreciated!
New Mountain Equipment
During the winter and spring of 2018, the campaign funded major upgrades for Mad River Glen’s essential mountain equipment. A new excavator was immediately put to use installing new culverts around the mountain (also paid for by campaign contributions). A new dump truck has been long requested by mountain staff and is proving to be a major asset. Also acquired were a much-needed new all-terrain vehicle and two new snow machines. All equipment was purchased lightly used and will provide many years of reliable service. According to Nate Martin, Mountain Operations Manager: “We’ve needed a dump truck and excavator for quite some time and we are so grateful to have them. It is enabling us to do so much up on the hill and making us more efficient too. Thanks to the campaign for making it possible!”
Trail Crew and Mountain Work
During the summers of 2017 and 2018, the campaign funded a trail crew that has been hard at work improving Mad River Glen’s fabled glades and clearing overhanging branches that have been gradually encroaching on our trails over the course of many years. The campaign has also funded replacement of numerous culverts around the mountain, helping to improve drainage and enable the mountain to operate on less natural snow. These simple but effective projects will have a tangible impact on the skiing experience in coming years.
Over the past year, campaign donations allowed the Cooperative to purchase several new snow guns. The additional capacity allows mountain operations to make snow more efficiently. Multiple guns reduce the time needed to move guns between locations and allow us to seize the moments when the temps are right to make snow. Snow was blown in the base area and on the practice slope prior to opening for the 2017-18 season, creating depths and coverage not seen in previous years. These infusions of capital help make our modest snowmaking system more effective and efficient, creating better skiing surfaces and help us to better withstand the fluctuations in winter weather.
New Mountain Mower
In July 2017, the Cooperative purchased a lightly-used Aebi mountain mower that will be funded by the campaign. The new tractor replaces three Rapid hand-operated mowers that are no longer operational, and a rented tractor that was expensive to operate and had some significant liabilities. The new tractor will reduce operating costs and allow us to mow when conditions are most favorable. Unlike the rented tractor, the new mower does not leave ruts that lead to erosion and is much gentler on our terrain, helping our trails to be skied with limited natural snow.
Snowmaking Electrical System
In the fall of 2016, the campaign demonstrated the ability to complete a project under budget and in an aggressive timeframe with the completion of Phase One of our snowmaking system replacement. After safety concerns with the existing snowmaking electrical system came to light earlier in the year, the system was replaced one year ahead of schedule. Ground was broken in early October, work was finished by late November, and the system was fired up shortly afterwards to help Mad River Glen open on December 10, 2016, the earliest opening day in many years. Replacement of the snowmaking pipes and pump are scheduled to begin in 2018.
New Pistenbulley Groomer
In December 2015, the Cooperative made its first major campaign-related purchase – a PistenBulley 400 grooming machine. The "new to us" groomer replaced a PistenBulley groomer that was two decades old and was becoming increasingly expensive to operate. Mad River Glen's second groomer is scheduled to be replaced later in the campaign.
New Double Patrol/Warming Hut
A new patrol/warming hut at the top of the Double Chair was completed in November, 2015. The campaign funded purchase of the construction materials for the hut, which was expanded to allow use as a warming hut for the Ski School. The building was constructed entirely with donated labor by forty volunteers, primarily from the Ski Patrol. The project shows how the spirit of volunteerism and philanthropy can come together, demonstrating a new way forward for Mad River Glen.