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Saturday, October 31, 2009

Hi Everybody,
Thank you for letting me take photos of you today, Ocotober 31.  It was so nice seeing everyone out and enjoying themselves with the first snow.  Let's think more snow and again, thank you for letting me share this beautiful day with you.
Sarah Shaw,
Grand Mesa Nordic Council

Grooming Report

About 15" of snow on the ground. 
Jon and I groomed nearly 10k today for skate and classic skiing.  Scales Lake Road is rock free and groomed from the Skyway parking lot out to the microwave tower.  We also groomed the Dog Trail and Dog loop at County Line. There are a few rocks and willows showing on these two trails.  Overall skiing was great for the first day of the season.


It's not often that the first day of skiing coincides with Halloween, and your GMNC president and the Mesa State Ski Team did not let the holiday go uncelebrated.

The skiing couldn't be better!! A big thanks to our groomers--Kenton and Jon. For those who've asked, yes, we do have a little grooming at County Line too. Kenton will have a full grooming report shortly...

In the meantime, here are some photos. Now get up there and ski!


Friday, October 30, 2009

2nd try to add photo

Tea and ski

Hi gang, you might recognize the hat! Great snow depth at skyway last night. You might consider night skiing the moon is out! Had a great time last night on a solo ski on scales lake road, it was a little challenging to get this picture...
Dave Knutson
Fundraising Volunteer



Thursday, October 29, 2009

Snow Reports

Here are some snow reports that have been coming in to the GMNC.

"My dad and I just skied from Skyway to Countyline. It was very good. From the snowmobile trail to countyline was the best, about 8 inches. Just a few rocks on the way over. We live at 8,000 feet and it is really snowing hard now. Looks like a good early winter."

"Skied Waterdog on Wednesday, great coverage wonderful powder."

"Went skiing on top on Wednesday, too much snow depth for easy touring!"

Do you have a report? Share it here by clicking on comments. (You don't need an account or login to comment.)


Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Grooming this weekend!

Time to wax those skis! 

Kenton and Jon will be grooming Scales Lake road on Saturday morning. If all goes as planned, expect tracks by noon, if not sooner.

Keep it tuned here for updates and condition reports. If you like what you ski, please join GMNC. Your memberships and donations fund our grooming operations.

Hope to see some costumed skiers on Saturday.


Wednesday, October 21, 2009

2009 Youth Cross Country Ski Day Registration

2009 Youth Cross Country Ski Day Registration
Registration forms for the upcoming youth ski day can be found at:  Please register early to ensure that we have enough skis available for those that need them.  Remeber to check the Grand Mesa Glider's blog ( to stay up to date on this program too. 

Monday, October 12, 2009

Winter Sports Workshop

Crossroads Fitness Center in Grand Junction is hosting a Winter Sports Workshop on Saturday, Oct 17 from 8am to 1:30pm.

Where: Crossroads Fitness Center, 2768 Compass Drive, Grand Junction

call (970) 242-8746 for more info. Or download a flyer with details here.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Recent Trail Work

Recent trail work at Skyway and County Line.  Volunteers have cleared all of the trails of downed timber and cut most of the bad willow patches on Vista Loop.  We may do one more trail day before it snows to put up signs.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

GMNC is hiring!

The Grand Mesa Nordic Council is seeking an Operations Manager for the upcoming 2009/2010 season.

This new position will be responsible for overseeing the cross-country ski area operations at three trail systems on the Grand Mesa. Duties include maintaining trailheads and trail signs, managing grooming operations and overseeing grooming equipment maintenance. Position requires a frequent on-site presence throughout the ski season and regular monitoring of events and ski trail conditions (i.e. lots of skiing). Knowledge of ski area operations and passion for cross-country skiing required. Grooming experience a plus. The position is part-time.

Submit a letter of interest and resume to:, Attn: Operations.

Review of applications begins November 15.

Detailed job description below.

Operations Manager Job Description

Operations Manager Requirements and Responsibilities

The operations manager will delegate and oversee the accomplishment of the following responsibilities.

Pay will be a salary negotiated with selected candidate, with the potential for additional pay per hour for grooming.

General Hiring Criteria

Manager will be an employee, not a board member

Have a good knowledge of x/c skiing, trail grooming, and ski area management

Excellent management and communication skills

Available to ski and work on site throughout the 22-week season (average), especially during weekends and holidays. Available to coordinate pre and post season work

Preseason Trail maintenance in September and October

Walk trails for down trees and replace broken blue poles other markings, such as blue ribbons.

Coordinate volunteer trail work days and publicity (e.g. web, email, newspaper)

Liaison with Forest Service for work beyond general maintenance

Arrange acquisition or approval of signs including blue posts, diamonds, and ‘No Snowmobile’ signs from the Forest Service

Coordinate volunteer trail work days and publicize

Put up new steel posts and blue poles where needed.

Coordinate people with chainsaws and other tools to cut dead leaning hazard trees and brush

Beginning of season:

Put up information and donation boxes on boards at all trailheads, including top of Ward (where donation box is on a pipe)

Schedule and coordinate delivery of grooming equipment to trailheads during the first week of November for snowmobiles and upon 2-3 feet snow base for snowcat; make sure equipment is serviced prior to delivery

Coordinate delivery of fuel tank with gauge, stand, and stock tank to Skyway and first filling of the tank

Put up “You Are Here” (YAH) and “No Snowmobile” signs on trails, corridor, and highway (This can be accomplished by having groomer haul them in on snowmobile and volunteers putting them up.)

During Season:

Coordinate grooming at Skyway, County Line, and Ward areas

In general, schedule groomers and time of day, paying extra attention to weekend grooming especially at trail heads. If set on Friday and Saturday afternoon, if weather allows, should help with the problem with snowshoes and dogs especially at trail heads.

Pre-schedule at the beginning of the week to ensure groomers are available at all times during the week. Modify as requirements and weather forecasts change.

Arrange extra grooming as necessary for events such as races and Barneloppet

Coordinate with board-approved special-use groups (e.g. Gliders, Mesa State Ski Team)

Prioritize grooming of trails according to projected and actual use

Groom for quality first in high usage areas and then quantity of trail kilometers

Schedule grooming late in the day whenever practical to increase durability of the set tracks and reduce cold weather starts on the snowcat

Track equipment and groomer hours, budget and grooming costs throughout the season

Balance grooming among groomers and between snowcat hours and snowmobile hours to have consistent trail conditions and meet the budget

Ensure safe grooming practices by the groomers (e.g. post-grooming check in, use of safety gear)

Grooming Reports and publicity

Send grooming plans to website and email list

Send grooming reports to website and email list

Submit end-of-week report to GMNC board

Handle any other operations-related publicity requirements

Keep tabs on diesel and order diesel (coordinate delivery with Simpson @ Grand Mesa Lodge so as to keep cost down) Order right mixture (50/50 mix to prevent jelling)

Ensure diamonds are replaced and obstructing limbs are cut over all trails

Ensure ease of skier access at all trail heads

End of season:

Coordinate to have grooming equipment and fuel tank transported to summer storage within 2 weeks after last grooming

Take down “YAH” and “No snowmobile” signs by May 1st at Skyway and County Line; within 1 week after grooming stops on Ward(e.g. Have volunteers take the signs off and leave by pole with the groomer picking them up on snowmobile.)

Store loose blue poles (if not on steel posts) “YAH” signs

Remove donation boxes and store; paint/repair as required

Clear information boards paint/repair as required

Other responsibilities:

Oversee hauling of equipment up and down plus fuel tank and stock tank (beginning of season & at end)

Ensure necessary equipment repairs and scheduled maintenance are completed before, during, and after the season

Use staff as much as possible, then contract for maintenance with Kissner for snowmobile repair and Kassbohrer for snowcat; coordinate with board for large maintenance items (>$1000?)

Arrange proper storage and covering of snowcat and snowmobiles for offseason

Ensure registration and insurance on equipment are up to date

Keep records of all equipment usage and maintenance, including copies of registrations and insurance

Oversee the sale of extra equipment

Ensure donation boxes are emptied twice a month and remitted to treasurer

Liaison parking lot issues with CDOT supervisor (snowcat will not be used for plowing parking lot)

To Apply:

Submit a letter of interest and resume to:, Attn: Operations.

Review of applications begins November 15.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Trail Work

Thanks to everyone who worked last Sat., as we were able to cover all the trails at Skyway and County Line. For the next work day, we are in need of a brush cutter, such as a Stihl or equivalent, to tackle some of the willows. If you can supply one, that would help a lot.

Meet at the Skyway parking lot this Saturday, Oct 10 at 9:30, and wear something orange.