Thursday, December 24, 2009

C-Note Already!

Here is my 100th blog! Looking over the past four months, I owe you readers an apology! Of the now 100 posts, more than half have strayed far afield of my Mission Statement...too much fishing, cooking, and whining about the weather forecast...not enough nuts and bolts grooming stuff.

Going forward, I promise to stick to the template...this might be easier now that I'm back in my Snowcat five nights a week. However, the sad reality is, I don't possess a disciplined mind like my Father and the scores of the more successful around me. I guess you could say I'm Reactive, not Pro-Active. Not always, but "being in the moment" is my Default Setting...being a Baby Boomer is a curse in many ways!

Last night, I returned to work after an overwrought "weekend" of struggling with issues at the DaveCave, and accomplishing nothing on my "To Do" list.

Walking up the Shop Road from the Groomer's Parking Lot, I was greeted by the worst possible sight...three new BR350 snowcats parked forlornly outside the Vehicle Shop in various states of disrepair...unfortunately, included in the sad rogue's gallery was my favorite machine...sigh...In it's stead, I did my first shift in our brand new Bison with the "X" only had 137 hours on the clock when I left the shop in her.

The Boss was at the shop, with his kneepads on, doing his best impression of a Vehicle Mechanic. The hand-off between Swing and Grave was a sad affair to say the least...we had more operators than we had cats for them to operate.

When the nights like this one conspire against the Grooming Crew, someone always says: "Moma said there'd be days like this"...Oh, I thought it, but didn't utter a word. The second year guys were pressed into service as Snowmaker Shock Troops pending the mending of their machines. A fair East Wind was upon us, and the mercury was in the teens...but the good snowmaking conditions were small compensation!

With clear, cold conditions, conditions were "fast"...just this side of "Hero Snow" as a matter of fact, but getting enthused when half the crew isn't contributing is outside of Accepted Groomer's Etiquette. Those of us still standing soldiered on, pending the arrival of the Graveyard Mechanic...

About the time the Graveyard Wrench punched in, another cat went down...a new winchcat lost it's winch, and while trying to remedy his troubles, he managed to loose a track as well! Fortunately, his cable wasn't crossing the whole Peak! This time I didn't allow myself to even think: "Moma said..."

With the handwriting on the wall, I wielded my trusty blue pencil, and fashioned a "Silk Purse Solution" from the "Sow's Ears" hand we were dealt.

Fortunately, Tuesday's 3600 Guests didn't do that much damage to the piste, and with good cold temps, the Workorders were reasonable...and highly customizable!

Around 5AM, one of the "Forlorn Three" went back online, and an operator was driven to the shop to warm it up and join the crew on the Mountain!

Well, I'm happy to report that my guys pulled another rabbit out of the hat! We got most of the list completed in time, and the edits weren't critical...I handed the Bison X over to the Park Groomer when I went in to refuel at 0700, and called it a day.

Our Guests would have plenty of Fresh Corduroy Groomers to please them, and more snowmaking helped the Park Crew in the building of our Pro Terrain Parks!

I got home so early, that I needed to kill hours before I could do my Reno errands. Nice weather continues through the Weekend, so the Mountain is looking good for the New Grooming Machine Sweepstakes!

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