New Winch Cat

Smuggs Grooming Manager Arlo Pouliot in the driver seat. Photo credit Smuggs Mountain Operations Manager Mike McAdoo
Arlo grooming the “Neck” the steep section between Black Snake and the Practice Slope. Photo credit Mike McAdoo

A winch cat is a special cat equipped with a huge winch with a braided steel cable and a steel boom that pays out the cable from the cat’s cabin. Typically, the free end of a winch cat’s cable is anchored to a shackle on a steel pole, concrete block, or some combination of the two at the top of the slope before it begins its descent of an impossibly steep mountain grade. This allows us to groom steeper slopes that regular snow cats can not do.

Due to grooming operations, lift operations will begin today at 10:00 am. Today we have Sterling Lift and Sir Henry’s Glider. We also have Village Lift and Mogul Mouse’s Magic Lift open to mid-station. We have terrain open for all ability levels with 22 trails open. 12 trails have been groomed for today for a grand total of 51 acres of freshly groomed terrain. We received 10 inches of new snow overnight on top. Currently, it is partly sunny and 2 degrees at the summit of Sterling with winds of 10 to 20 mph. Today’s forecast is calling for partly sunny skies with a high of 8 degrees and breezy. Dress warm and enjoy the new snow! Surface conditions are machine groomed and powder with average base depths of 6 to 30 inches. We are presently making snow on Midway, Garden Path, and Meadowlark.

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Hugh Johnson

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