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  • Writer's pictureCaroline Farkas

The Math Behind Snow Making: How Snow Trails Uses Math to Create Perfect Skiing Conditions

Introduction


Ski resorts need to have enough snow to ensure skiers and snowboarders can enjoy their activities. But how do they make sure they have enough snow all the time? The answer is math. At Snow Trails, math is used every day to create high-quality snow for skiing and snowboarding. Watch the full video here:





The Snow-Making Process


Snow Trails creates its snow using a complex process that involves water, air, and pressure. It all starts in their pumphouse, where powerful pumps push cold water out to each snow gun. The colder the water, the faster it can turn into a snowflake as it goes out of the snow gun. But how do they ensure they're making the best quality snow?


Water Temperature and Quality


Snow Trails uses different calculations to understand wet bulb temperature. They have to estimate how much water is needed at certain temperatures and then reference charts to make the best quality snow. They also have a cooling tower that can cool the water down by 13 degrees before it goes out to the snow gun, which helps the water turn into snowflakes faster.


Snow Quality


How do they ensure the snow is dry and not wet? Snow Trails uses a bounce check to test the snow. A snowmaker goes out and stands in front of the snow gun with a waterproof jacket. If the snow bounces off of the jacket, then it's dry snow. If it sits and melts, that means that the temperatures are too warm, or they're using too much moisture. They can adjust the gun to create the best quality snow.


Math in the Rental Center and Ski Shop


Math is also used in the rental center and ski shop at Snow Trails. In the rental center, they use charts to determine the size and set of equipment specific to each person's height, weight, and ability level. They also use math to set the binding for each person's boot properly to their weight and ability. In the ski shop, they use an edge sharpening machine that will angle the edge based on how much grip is needed on the snow. Different angles make the equipment tuned differently for each skier and snowboarder.


Conclusion


Math is essential for creating high-quality snow at Snow Trails. From determining the right water temperature to setting equipment specific to each person's ability level, math is used every day to create the perfect skiing conditions. If you want to learn more about the math behind snow-making, watch the full video here.


Want to know more about Snow Trails? Check out their website here.



Snow gun shooting snow into the air with math

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