Dec 1, 2013 | Marmot, Winter 2013

News In Brief – Encompassing people, places and happenings at Mount Washington.

Your seasonal wrap up of latest mountain news.

Powder Magazine Spotlight – Mount Washington Alpine Resort earned some attention from Powder Magazine in the pre-season, during the Ski Town Throwdown, a contest pitting ski resorts from across North America against each other.

“It was an interesting process for us,’ said Brent Curtain, Resort Director of Public Relations. “This was a huge social media push for us.’

Mount Washington won their first round against Kicking Horse Resort, located near Golden, B.C. But it was their second round, against Eaglecrest in Alaska that drew a lot of attention.

“For both of our resorts to get nearly 4,000 votes was unreal,’ Curtain said. Most resorts in other throwdowns were getting 600 votes at the most.

Despite a last-minute surge, Mount Washington lost by about 130 votes to Eaglecrest.

Curtain said Mount Washington received a lot of social media attention via Facebook and Twitter, as well as exposure with Powder Magazine.

“We did get some phenomenal exposure making it to the second round, especially with our local people. It got them talking about the upcoming snow season.’

Tom Leopkey of Section 8 Snowsports Institute travelled to the Hintertux Glacier Resort in the Austrian Tyrol in October for a mini reunion of Section 8 graduates.

“There is skiing and snowboarding here 365 days a year on the glacier so a few years back we decided to run a pre-season performance camp here as a sort of reunion for Section 8’s European graduates,’ Leopkey wrote in an e-mail to the Marmot.

The event has changed since its inception and is now open to anyone wanting to improve their skiing or riding before the winter season truly begins.

Leopkey stayed for 18 days and was to film the first installment of a new instructional video series the institute is developing. Further videos will be filmed at Mount Washington Alpine Resort, Leopkey said.

Shane Harle of Life Ski Academy, meanwhile, was in Calgary in October attending a freestyle coaching clinic and meeting up with a student on board with the academy for winter 2013-14.

The Vancouver Island Mountain Centre received a grant from ViaSport last summer to develop a new orienteering course in the sub-alpine.

Two new courses were created and used in the summer, and VIMC Manager Andrew Scherck said they have supplies and plans in place to work with Raven Lodge and their team to develop an add-on course for orienteering on snowshoes in winter.

“The biggest challenge with the summer orienteering course was the mapping involved,’ Scherck said. “We created custom maps based off of the winter maps used during the ski season then made multiple changes to improve their accuracy.’

The Vancouver Island Mountain Centre has created a camping site adjacent to the main facility in order to accommodate tenters.

Mount Washington has added two new Snow Cats to its grooming fleet, which will enable the Mountain Operations Team to improve grooming over more terrain while consuming less fuel, Director of Public Relations Brent Curtain said.

New grooming patterns will be used, and that will translate into more vertical skiing and riding and less time traversing runs.

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