Powder Mountain Access Meeting

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Powder Mountain Access Meeting

Postby Augie » Fri Sep 08, 2006 6:39 am

I have been invited to a staff meeting at Powder Mountain on Sept 18 to present them with the potential that snowkiting has there. They want me to keep the presentation simple and not have a large group up there at this meeting. I spoke with the mountain manager last night and he said just have a talking paper (no computer projectors) and show the short DVD that I have that shows some kiteskiers. I also was going to bring along a kite and show them the safety systems and maybe fly my foil in the parking lot. I am asking the kiting community to come up with ideas for the talking paper or any other type of presentation. Keep in mind that they still are a family type resort and staff meetings are held in the bar. Try to think of ways that would benefit them and post your ideas here. I already have talked to numerous people over the years about this but I am sure you guys can come up with something more. Just post your thoughts and I will check back frequently to include anything that I may have forgotten.
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Postby lesvierra » Fri Sep 08, 2006 7:26 am

Its obvious that I stepped on some toes here by arranging a meeting sept 18th 10am but at least something is happening other than waiting around. I was invited some time ago based on the idea that we (the kiting community could present some ideas that would help powder mountain). Remember, this is something Powder Mountain invited us to do, not something we are pushing on them. As I called around the last couple of days, it was very obvious that there are different private and commercial interests among the local snowkiting community for Powder Mountain. And I cant believe what I'm hearing from auggie and the way he has approached this at the last second, but whatever. Although I have spent some time on this, I don’t care who presents to Powder Mountain, I don’t care what is presented to powder mountain other than giving Powder Mountain the info they need and the assistance they need to allow snowkiting on their mountain. I think the best way to do this is to get a small group, yes not a lot of people as stated by powder mountain before and to auggie, to be available to first brainstorm ideas for a presentation (more heads better than one) and a few guys at the meeting to answer questions (again, more heads better than one). Some pretty sharp people will not be at the meeting, ie Brian, Chris, and Marty, however there are some people that would like to contribute, like myself, Jake, Ryan, and possibly others. I don’t care what your motive is, we all can still contribute.

Again topics to be discussed are snow kiting in general, how its growing in the US, safety issues, show that snowkiting can benefit Powder Mountain in some way, and figuring out some kind of pass system for snow kiters. What is your opinion here? We can offer auggie ideas that he can run with, or we can put some heads together on this. If we can’t agree, Id propose to let auggie run with it. I’d also like to propose a get together some time next week where more folks can get together to get involved, go over the presentation, and offer additional ideas and comments so its from all of us and not a couple of us. Thanks, les
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Postby Marty Lowe » Fri Sep 08, 2006 7:43 am

Augie,
Thanks for your endless work on this project.
There was mention of reinstating the 10 ride back country pass for kiters.
That sounds like a good idea to me, for locals. It could be punched at the tow rope lift by the radar towers.
But how will tourist pay? 10 rides may be to many for them. I kited PM 11 times last year, I hope for more this year.
I am concerned that once they put this, or anything in place,
that they will want us off the mountain at the same time the lifts close.
It seems the peak winds have been around that time, and later.
will we still be able to kite until dark?
I know the helicopter tour guys have some concerns about us, when we launch by the parking lot. I'm sure this will have to be addressed.

Benifits to Powder Mountain.

It appears to be the only/first ski resort that has the opportunity to offer snowkiting, that alone opens the doors for Powder to attract kiters from all over the world.
Simply put.. no wind,, hit the resort...more $$$

There are groups that have financial interest in programs at Powder.
A percentage, or fees for lessons, tours etc. could be money makers.
If a terain park is built. sell advertising on the ramps, kickers etc.

Augie, I hope this is what kind of stuff your looking for.
I'll add more if I can.

-Marty 8)

I think Les got this meeting initiated.
Thanks Les for keeping the ball rolling.
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Postby lesvierra » Fri Sep 08, 2006 7:47 am

sounds good to me marty.. right direction.
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Postby Marty Lowe » Fri Sep 08, 2006 7:58 am

lesvierra wrote: but at least something is happening other than waiting around.


Les,
I applaud your stoke, but,

I'm not quite sure why you think nothing has been happening?

Have you talked to Augie about what has been happening at PM.
He is the inside guy there. He was probably the first kiter at Powder,
He is a ski patroler that has been in contact with management since day one on this issue, he is, and shoiuld be the front man on this issue, in my opinion.

Powder is getting hit from many directions, mostly financial. Augie does not have any financial intrests. I would suggest Powder Mountain appoints a liasion to hear all issues, then present the ideas to management. Maybe that person should be Augie.


Have you ever even kited at Powder Mountain?

I'm sure this will piss you off, but sometimes stoke clouds the big picture.
Your new at this sport, people haven't been sitting around on this issue. Things take time. They barely got insurance issues taken care of. They aren't just waiting around.

-Marty 8)
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Postby Marty Lowe » Fri Sep 08, 2006 8:01 am

Les,
Your one step ahead of me with each post.
Your posting while I'm composing my post.
It looks/sounds confusing, and out of order.
sorry
-Marty 8)
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Postby Augie » Fri Sep 08, 2006 8:51 am

Les,

Don't get me wrong. I do appreciate everything that you are doing and you are still welcome to attend with me at the meeting. Rod also told me last night after speaking to you that he really didn't want any kite pros etc. attending. When I called him last night it was mostly to find out what type of spresentation that they wanted and whether it would be on a computer projector and so on. Rod also said that management considers me the kiting community representative. Maybe it's because they think they can trust me since they know me better than any other kiter. I don't know. However, I didn't ask for the job but I also think it would be irresponsible of me to just ignore their perception. I really was considering quitting the ski patrol after 21 years so that I could kite more but stayed on mainly to stay in the loop with management and work from within the organization to make it better for us as kiters. If it somehow turns into some kind of kite patrol, kite liaison or whatever they want to call it, then that's cool for me. If not, I still may quit the patrol next year to get more kiting in.

I just want to correct you about me coming along at the last minute to attend the meeting. Check back to previous topics where you talked about initiating the meeting. I said that I could attend on back on Aug 14. I may not have said much more than that but sometimes work gets crazy and I didn't have time to elaborate in my response. I also know that things move extremely slow at Pow Mow and it really doesn't do any good to push them. The new lift consumed all of their attention and resources. That is why we had to cut the trees instead of the trail crew.

Again , no hard feelings and I sincerely appreciate the help. We are all working towards a common goal. Enough of this touchy feely crap-I have no other motive in posting this other than to get others ideas. The purpose of this thread was to get people brainstorming-GIVE ME SOME IDEAS!!!
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Postby Kenny » Fri Sep 08, 2006 9:28 am

Augie,

I appreciate your willingness to represent the kiting community.

Keep in mind that even though this meeting is low key, it is still a sales call. The most important aspect of any call is being prepared. You may already know some of the information below. If not, I think the following questions need to be answered, so that we can prepare an intelligent response and seek for ways to overcome their objections. I suggest that 3 people go to the meeting. Augie as the trusted liason. Another experienced rider that understands the business of snowkiting. A third person to take detailed notes.

1. Does Powder Mountain currently have any objections to snowkiting? If so, what are they?

2. Has Powder Mountain shared with you the liability issues that have been raised by their insurance company? Will PowMow need to pay an additional premium in order to allow snowkiting on their property? Will snowkiters need to sign a special waiver?

3. What are Powder Mountains expectations? How many incremental riders would it take to make snowkiting worth the time and trouble of managing?

I think local snowkiters need to recognize that their will be a fee associated with kiting at PowMow due to the liability and management issues. I like Marty's idea of a discounted 10 pass for locals. I suggest that people from out of town would be required to buy a day pass. I figure that if you have come so far to go snowkiting, it is not that big of a deal to buy a day pass. We are used to free snowkiting at Skyline and Strawberry, but PowMow is a private enterprise.

Thanks for giving me the opportunity to share my 2 cents.

Kenny
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Postby MikE mAy » Fri Sep 08, 2006 9:50 am

i'm kind of out of the loop on this topic, especially since i haven't snow kited yet, but i have worked with the ski patrol and management at Brighton for a few years. i know how agonizingly slow things can move, especially when you want to do something new or out of the norm that superficially looks like it will not be a revenue generator. so, Augie, i applaud your efforts to provide a great place for us kiters to enjoy a nice, upkept, close by, area to snow kite.

my concerns/questions/coments are these:

1) how much for a day pass? what kind of money out of my pocket will i have to shell out to kite at powder mountain? i have to admit that one of the alures of kiting to me was the lack of money needed to buy passes. i'm sure that some of us in the kiting community can buy passes with no problem, but last year as my first year without a free pass i realized that i was often asking the questions "do i have enough money to ski this weekend?" this bummed me out. i would hate for this to infuse kiting. i envisioned snow kiting as opening doors to the backcountry, not limiting me. i do realize though, that areas like silver mountain and skyline ridge will always be free for me to ride.... so, i guess what would take me as a new rider to pow mow instead of these free areas?

2) i think kenny is on the right track with asking what Powder Mountain expects to see from this. how many of us riding there would it take to make it worth the trouble to them?

3)what sort of restrictions will we face if we ride there? i don't know the area too well. would we be restricted or fenced in as to create a clear line where liability begins/ends like "out of bounds" skiing? is the area pretty much fenced in anyway?

4) is it worth it for us as a kiting community to pay a higher pass fee to see a terrain park maintained there? and, if that is the case, will we end up maintaining it anyway? i can attest from personal experiance that other than pipe dragging, most riders end up maintaining the parks/jumps anyway. powder mountain would be no exception with what i'm envisioning is a mom and pop operation with not a whole bunch of extra resources. so, will we pay an extra $20 a sesh to rake out our own jumps anyway?

5) maybe someone should contact Dave Whitke (i think that's how you spell it). i know he has posted on here a few times about windsurfing. i think he's one of the guys who's been wind surfing here for a while. he's the head grooming guy at brighton, and his wife is the head of ski school. perhaps they can offer some suggestions or ideas as to how it could work....

6) lastly, are there any problems with the forest service here? i wouldn't image there is, but just checking.

laters,

Mike
Last edited by MikE mAy on Fri Sep 08, 2006 9:55 am, edited 3 times in total.
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Postby Kenny » Fri Sep 08, 2006 9:51 am

One more thought - the reason that I recommend a small group of only 2 or 3 people representing the snowkiting community is that this is a business meeting, not a public townhall meeting where more representation is better. This forum is quite the opposite. We need to make a clear, intelligent case for the long-term viability of snowkiting at PowMow. Unlike a public forum, Powder Mountain can refuse snowkiting no matter how much the public may wish to participate in the sport on their property. Case in point - Alta doesn't allow snowboarders.
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Postby Augie » Fri Sep 08, 2006 11:16 am

This is the talking paper that I will use. It is a work in progress but I am open to more comments.


SNOWKITING AT POWDER MOUNTAIN

• What is snowkiting? Only 7-8 years old and growing fast
• Benefits to Powder Mountain-Ways to Produce Capital

• More skier visits-family, friends accompanying kiters are intangible but realistic. If the wind dies, kiters can go skiing
• Attracts non-kiters -as many as 25 people watching at times
• Free publicity-photo shoots, videos, internet, magazine articles
• Unique opportunity-most ski areas don’t have the terrain/ most kite areas don’t have lodge facilities
• Kite festivals-Skyline Drive in Fairview Utah had 150 kiters last year plus spectators. Event televised on all 4 local TV stations plus newspapers. Professional riders from around the world attended
• Kite lessons-expensive- $150-$200 for 3-4 hours. Turn key operation possible.
• Kite sales-new kites cost $700-$1000
• Terrain Park- lots of interest. Sell banner advertising on ramps.
• Punch Pass? Ideal for the kiters when the wind dies and access
• Designated kite area will be off limits to snowmobiles
• Closer drive for most kiters than Skyline
• Concerns
• Insurance-Additional cost? Liabilities? Kiter Waiver Form
• Kite Pass-What type? If it is a punch pass, can it be converted to day pass? Kite unique hazards should be printed on pass
• Closing times are sometimes wind comes up. Do kiters leave?
• Helicopter landing zone by parking lot
• Who patrols area if at all?
• Maintenance of Terrain Park

• Other Issues
• Lodge being built in Fairview for kiters
• Out of state businesses already are making money here with tour packages and lessons at Fairview
• Kiters don’t have to pay to kite other places and can carve turns on frozen reservoirs or flat fields
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Postby Jacob Buzianis » Fri Sep 08, 2006 3:22 pm

I have been out of the loop for a while. I came down with serious flu. Sleeping in my bed for almost a week trying to get over it. I feel a little bit better then yesterday.

Anyway, Augie. The talking paper, you have said most of it. there a few thing I wouldn't want to say to them yet. Base on my experience involve with the snowkite sport. Just show what snowkiting is and what Powder Mountain has that is so unique for snowkiting. The goal is to get the access first and the rest will come later the terrain park, kiting area only, kite lesson, kites sale, etc, Just like how snowboard was in past. Here the lists I wouldn't discuss unless they ask.

• Kite lessons-expensive- $150-$200 for 3-4 hours. Turn key operation possible. (it will cost powder mountain more money and time to get into it which I know they don't want to get into yet. Powder Mt. would want to see snowkiting grow first and then offer the lesson.)
• Kite sales-new kites cost $700-$1000( again samething time and money involve)
• Terrain Park- lots of interest. Sell banner advertising on ramps( Don't talk about this yet, First we want to get the access to go there. Later on when snowkiting is growing then let talk to them about putting a terrian park there.
•Designated kite area will be off limits to snowmobiles( Don't discuss this yet until we have full access to snowkiting first.)
• Concerns (Let them know we will do whatever it take work out any concerning they have with no or less time and money out of their pocket)
• Insurance-Additional cost? Liabilities? Kiter Waiver Form( Don't ask or discuss unless they ask you or us about it. Let them ask the question first.)
• Closing times are sometimes wind comes up. Do kiters leave?( Don't ask this question also. Let them decide how them want to run it.)
• Helicopter landing zone by parking lot(Don't bring up this issue unless they ask questions about it first)
• Who patrols area if at all? ( this is another time and money involve. If they want someone to patrol the kite area, let them decide that and we can offer our help.
• Maintenance of Terrain Park(Again, this is another time and money involve which Powder mt doesn't want to do. Later on when snowkiting is growing then let talk to them about Maintaining the terrain park.

After reading the post, it looks like I can't go to the meeting. If that true let me know since I'm planning to go to it. Let me know Jacob Buzianis
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Postby Kenny » Fri Sep 08, 2006 3:56 pm

Augie,

I mostly agree with Jacob concerning not discussing some of the points. I would bring the list with me in case the conversation goes in a particular direction.

I personally would bring up the insurance liability issue because it is an obvious issue that needs to be handled. There are several ways to handle the liability issue. 1. Powder Mountain could require signed waivers. 2. They could post the kiting area as Out of Bounds with clearly marked signs indicating that they have no liability if an accident occurs. 3. Their insurance could cover snowkiters.

Mike M,

Hey I understand that you don't want to have to pay to snowkite. That would be cool if Powder Mountain could provide a way for all of us to do so without charging a fee. However, if it is pay a fee or no kiting, then I think a lot of us would rather pay the fee. PowMow is a regular business, they are not a non-profit or government entity, so I rather expect that there will be a fee associated with kiting there. Fortunately, every other location so far is free.

Kenny
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Postby rizzle » Fri Sep 08, 2006 4:13 pm

after speaking with Chris it sounds like they have the insurance part handled. They basicly want to know how they can capitlize on the use of there land and the use of there ski patrol if needed.. We think we should all go in on a sign that states the riding area, hazards, and u pack it u pack it out type of thing. I thinking $10.00 kite pass to get you to the area and if the wind dies or sucks you can up grade to a day pass or something like that.

Ry...

On the other hand my buddy builds the park @ snowbird and he said he would love to build us one up there and could even provid the snow catt....just an idea.
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Postby lesvierra » Fri Sep 08, 2006 9:56 pm

The stoke is still alive Marty! Especially after seeing all the comments. To answer some of your questions even though it distracts from the overall objective here, I have spoken with Auggie off and on about Powder Mountain this last year. With so many questions unresolved last spring, I tried to initiate something from a different angle (I was supprised that everyone thought it was a done deal when Powder Mountain still had hurtles to clear). I’ve been talking with Kent Mathews operations manager, guy farther up the chain of command than Rod. Auggie and I are trying to accomplish the same thing just at different angles with different people. No I’m not pissed off that my stoke clouds may be clouding my judgment. Happens all the time, maybe that’s why I got married (joke). My last unintentional kite loop might have rattled a screw loose too. Yes, I have kited at Powder Mountain three times during my intro to kiting (one reason why I proposed that Ryan be there having kited there as much as anyone). I have backcountry skied just about every aspect around James Peak and the some slopes off the three areas that are good for kiting and have skied there since ‘89. Insignificant. I offered Kent our help when he was trying to resolve the insurance issues. He resolved the issues with his current policy. Also offered our help with these current issues and he accepted.

I will go to this meeting since I arranged the damn thing. Auggie will be the lead guy for good reason. I think auggie has some more questions for Rod this weekend, and I will continue to talk to Kent based on their intent and needs so that we are prepared and can answer some of the questions asked in this forum and be prepared for their questions. It doesn’t all have to come together here, but it’ll be a good start.
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