Grooming Equipment Decoder Ring

All of the below pieces of equipment pale in comparison to the indispensable “Volunteer”.  These poor souls have some sort of flaw that makes them go out at all hours and drive the above in an attempt to produce corduroy for our enjoyment.  An experienced groomer will know which piece of equipment is best for the job.  In addition, they will know the little tricks such as, how deep to set the teeth on the Ginzu or how fast to go if setting classic tracks or if packing is needed before grooming.  Grooming the trails from Forestville to Co Rd 510 including all the loops will take a volunteer about 8 hours.  Volunteers are always welcome.

Grooming Equipment Decoder Ring:
As a skier, I always want to know how a given trail was groomed.  All our equipment has good and bad features.  We need them all to produce good skiing.  The following comments will help the reader’s enjoyment of the Grooming Report.  I hope this helps.  Let me know.

Bombardier: Also known as, the Bombi for short.  We have two Bombis in the fleet.  Both are 12’ wide and pull a power tiller and track setter.  One is a model 160 and the other is a model 180.  You will see large groomers like the Bombi at ski resorts.  The Bombi grooming is typically the best. There are other companies that make similar equipment.  One such groomer is called the Piston Bully.  If money were not   an object we would groom very often with the Bombi.  Sadly, money is an object (in that we don’t have nearly enough of it). The Bombi is very expensive to operate.  So, we tend to use the Bombi’s for major snow events and Marathon race preparation.  The power tiller will compact this major snow event and leave us with a wide flat hard surface. When ever the Bombi goes out there will be excellent classic tracks.  The Bombi needs a base depth of at least 6” just to operate.  Now that we have such as base we are in mid season skiing.

Snowmobile: We have three snow mobiles.  All three are 4 stroke long track Skidoo machines.  There are two “800s” and one “600”.  Each of the three snow mobiles can pull a roller packer and one of the small Ginzu (see roller and Ginzu below).

Gator: We have a “side-by-side” 4-wheeler called a Gator by the maker, John Deer.  We have the wheels removed and in place are tracks.  It is very powerful and can pull the larger 8’ Ginzu.  This larger Ginzu will tend to leave a better surface than the 6 foot Ginzu if the snow is old.  If there is too much new snow the Gator tends to be less than ideal because the wide tractor tracks don’t pack down the middle as well as a snowmobile.

Ginzu:  Ginzu is a model of the Yellowstone ski track setter brand.  We have two Ginzus that are about 6’ wide and one that is about 8’ wide.  All of the Ginzu have “teeth” that can be adjusted as snow conditions vary.  These teeth break up the old snow and blend it such that the combs can leave corduroy for our skiing enjoyment.  Following Bombi grooming, the Ginzu can go out the next day and touch up the surface and skiing is as good as Bombi grooming.  The Ginzus have a track setter and, given the correct snow quality, set a track as good as the Bombi.  However, with no power tiller, if the snow is old or icy, the Ginzu will not be able to make a very good track for classic skiing.  As such, if there are well formed tracks from the Bombi or earlier Ginzu grooming we will tend to leave them alone if, in the groomer’s opinion, fresh tracks would be no better than what is already there.

Rollers: We have two rollers to pack fresh snow.  They are 6’ wide and ban be pulled by any of the snowmobiles.  Early in the season we must roll to start the base.  In addition, following a large snow event, if the Bombi does not go out we need to pack before the Ginzu.