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Lifts finished for the season

Discussion in 'Mt Baw Baw' started by surfnski, Sep 1, 2014.

  1. surfnski

    surfnski Hard Yards

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    Belgravia have decided, in their (lack of) wisdom, to give up and finish the ski lifts for the season.
    There is still 29cm in snowmaking areas and the bureau are forecasting snow all week.
    Where is the logic in that ? You can still learn to board or ski on that much snow. At least last year the lifts were slowly phased out to the point of having 3 running on 10+cm of man-made snow for a week before finishing with 1 lift on 7cm of man-made snow on the last day. Now that's how you squeeze every last skiable day out of the mountain. The new CEO gets an F for effort on the scorecard. We miss you already Stuart !
     
  2. Seth

    Seth Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Or, perhaps they have crunched the numbers and said it's not worth it?

    Hasn't Baw Baw been running at a significant loss over the past couple of years?
     
  3. surfnski

    surfnski Hard Yards

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    They have been running at a loss, but u don't improve the situation
    by cutting off potential sources of income.
    By all mean,s let the casual staff go to reduce overheads.
    1-2 lifts could easily be run by the permanent staff.
    There are many guests booked for September who are going to be really P'd off,
    and will remember that there was snow but no lifts.
    They wont come back, and will spread the word to others.
    Its a snowball effect (pardon the pun).
     
  4. Charlie

    Charlie Still the most depraved poster here Ski Pass: Gold

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    Actually, while the lifts are closed down now, word from management is,if there is significant snow in the next few days, they will re-open, possibly for the weekend
    Think snow!
     
  5. surfnski

    surfnski Hard Yards

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    Good to hear Charlie,
    Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!
    (in the memorable words of Dean Martin)
     
  6. Seth

    Seth Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    This seems very logical.
     
  7. surfnski

    surfnski Hard Yards

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    Logical, yes, but the website "mountain report " actually says "Lifts have finished for the Season", it sounds final.
    This should have been worded differently cos it puts off any potential visitors, even if it does snow this week.
    If I saw that written on a website, I wouldn't look at it again that season, i'd try another mountain.
    The "poor sightseeing and snowplay" is also a negative lean,
    Why talk it down ? The skiing may be poor, but by looking at the snowcams, the sightseeing and snowplay are both great,
    there are heaps more areas to toboggan for a start. Who writes these reports ? At least Kate could always find something positive to talk about.
     
  8. Seth

    Seth Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Sounds like you prefer the old days of condition reports over hyping conditions to make it sound like a winter wonderland every day of winter?
     
  9. surfnski

    surfnski Hard Yards

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    Some truth would be good. Since when is 29cm poor for snowplay ? Over hyping is always going to happen,
    but under hyping ? There are many stakeholders who are relying on September trade to break even this year,
    any report discouraging visitors is bad for all of us. The cost of power is now just under $1/kwh,
    so your average nobo costs over $20/day to run. Costs are spiralling. Lodges are handing back their keys.
    Its not a good situation, to add bad publicity from our own website as well.
     
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  10. cold wombat

    cold wombat Twitter Contributer Social Media Mod Ski Pass: Gold

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    Maybe they saw the results of @bawbawbel's rotation turning and couldn't bear to see any more.
     
  11. snowgum

    snowgum One of Us

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    Good to see the economic rationalists running things not!

    Shutting lifts with skiable snow at start September wont be good for marketing the Mtn or help confidence in product. Its a cop out!
    Sure if its not skiable - close. Maybe it was time to drop resort access charges & lifts a tad? Or provide other offers like thd big fellas are doing.

    I lay some of the blame at the Govts feet. There should be a clause about operating lifts when conditions permit.

    Or Belgravia might start getting cute and clising midweek outside sch
     
  12. snowgum

    snowgum One of Us

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    Sorry- hair trigger Iphones!

    Meant to write... Or they'll close midweek outside school holidays or when mid season cover is less than 'Excellent'.

    Ssh! Dont give them ideas! o_O
     
  13. teckel

    teckel Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    OTOH, Belgravia is keeping LM going when there is pretty much no snow except on the upper trails. They are hoping the next week brings the goods. I'd say it's a decision of the CEO, rather than Belgravia per se.
     
  14. Charlie

    Charlie Still the most depraved poster here Ski Pass: Gold

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    Check out the snowcams on ski.com
    It ain't that good!
    Edit:
    and as I said earlier, they'll open again if Huey delivers!
     
  15. Majikthise

    Majikthise Sage Moderator Ski Pass: Gold

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    folk can still go up and see @Charlie ...that's nearly as good as skiing.
     
  16. surfnski

    surfnski Hard Yards

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    Looks like someone is onto this Forum....by mid afternoon the website was revised to
    "Hut Run Platter is currently on standby" from previously "Lifts have finished for the Season"
    now how about telling everyone how much snow fell last night....
    BOM says 30mm precipitation at the Baw Baw weather station
    temperatures were a smite above zero, but it all looks white again on the cams !
     
  17. Charlie

    Charlie Still the most depraved poster here Ski Pass: Gold

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    50mm on my deck!
     
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  18. surfnski

    surfnski Hard Yards

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    Just enough for a snow angel !
     
  19. surfnski

    surfnski Hard Yards

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    The website is slowly catching up...Mountain report shows 7cm av / 34cm snowmaking...that's 5cm more for each than yesterday, but "Snow Conditions" show 0cm fresh snow in last 24hrs....I think I believe Charlie.
     
  20. surfnski

    surfnski Hard Yards

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    It appears that whoever is updating the website has no interest at all in promoting the mountain. Although it snowed again for the second night in a row, the fresh snow is shown as zero cm again, not just on the Baw Baw website but on all the other snow sites which rebroadcast their figures. Ski.com.au shows the last snowfall as 13Aug. Skiers and boarders make all their decisions based on these reports. The new management is not at all helping to fill our rooms, and we pay for a listing on this same website. Maybe not next year ! ....How much snow last night Charlie ?
     
  21. Charlie

    Charlie Still the most depraved poster here Ski Pass: Gold

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    Not much!
     
  22. priderock

    priderock Hard Yards

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    Got this from Facebook for this coming weekend - at least a positive to help fill your rooms ..

    A fresh 5cm of snow overnight has left the resort in perfect condition for some fun snow play with the family. Tobogganing is still available and with the fresh falls there is plenty of snow to build the best snowman ever.
    And psssst...I'll let you into a secret....it seems like free toboggan hire, meet the huskie sessions, even free taster ski lessons and other great experiences are happening this Father's Day weekend.....stay tuned for details but have the car fuelled up ready to go. Baw Baw is only 2.5 hours from Melbourne after all. Surprise Dad this weekend with a snow play feast.


    Better remind the kids it's Fathers Day
     
  23. teckel

    teckel Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Don't blame Belgravia entirely. It's the RMB who still has the ultimate say. eg: season end date, entry prices etc. Try as Belgravia may to influence the RMB, if the RMB is stubborn or self-opinionated and trying to maximise influence, they can and will override Belgravia's opinion. This has certainly happened on at least one issue at LM. No reason to believe that BB wouldn't be the same.

    ie: If Belgravia wanted to remain open, the RMB could override it and say "No. Closed for the season"
    If Belgravia wanted to close, the RMB could override them and make them stay open.
    So blame your RMB. They made the decision.
     
  24. surfnski

    surfnski Hard Yards

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    Why is it always the same ? the bureaucrats play politics, and stakeholders suffer the consequences....
    French political philosopher Alexis de Tocqueville (1805-1859) said “In democracy we get the government we deserve”
    ...Too bad we don't get the opportunity to vote them out.
     
  25. priderock

    priderock Hard Yards

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    Be good to get a couple of stakeholders on the Board who are actually tuned to the needs of the mountain, its stakeholders and customers. Any thoughts ?
     
  26. Charlie

    Charlie Still the most depraved poster here Ski Pass: Gold

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    7 stakeholders applied for a board vacancy recently......
    Not one was granted an interview!
     
  27. surfnski

    surfnski Hard Yards

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    We wouldn't actually want Board members who were seriously interested in maximising the visitation to the mountain and maximising room occupation, would we ? That's too logical ! They wouldn't let it happen.
     
  28. priderock

    priderock Hard Yards

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    Hey SurfnSki - maybe a little naive here but who better than people closely connected to the mountain to be on the Board. From what Charlie said there is certainly the interest and passion.
     
  29. Legs Akimbo

    Legs Akimbo Grumblebum Ski Pass: Gold

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    I think your sarcasm detector is malfunctioning.
     
  30. surfnski

    surfnski Hard Yards

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    True, it was sarcasm, but we could easily get 10 passionate stakeholders to put their hands up.
    Most of us would do it for free.
     
  31. priderock

    priderock Hard Yards

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    Thanks Legs and Surf. Nothing wrong with my sarcasm detection unit ;). I am friends with a couple of stakeholders and regular BB visitor, and know all they want is proper representation and a fair go, whoever is floating the boat ...
     
  32. snowgum

    snowgum One of Us

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    Aren't resort boards appointed by DEPI (previously DSE)?

    So in this way (sceptic hat on) the Government/Minister get to chose the ''best' people to apply 'their' ideals and policies.

    It would be safe to say besides developing business opportunities, this Govt is heavily into cutting costs to the public Purse. So the shorter season means a smaller loss to the kitty?

    Hope I'm wrong with this but being in the public sector it's (cost cutting) is the way we're generally heading ( state Govts & Feds!) - including ski resorts.
     
  33. teckel

    teckel Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    I think RMBs are assessed on how closely they keep to a budget, rather than maximising profits. Because their expenses this year would have way exceeded their budgeted expenses they can't keep spending (regardless of whether increased spending will result in increased profit).

    The problem is that budgets have to be fluid in an industry as variable as the snow industry. No one can budget accurately, when the outcome is almost entirely weather dependent. Budgets have to change with the weather. Government accounting systems are at best sluggish and could not cope with a weekly changing budget.
     
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  34. snowgum

    snowgum One of Us

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    Couldn't agree more Teckel. My colleagues have to work very hard to keep up with monthly variations!

    As for fixed costs - I wonder if it's time for the govt to help Bawbs become more self sufficient by examine alternative power supplies? I understand it relies on gas turbines which cost four times the unit cost of mains power in towns. This would have to be low hanging fruit for the Mtn?
     
  35. surfnski

    surfnski Hard Yards

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    Currently SPAusnet (now just Ausnet) are raping us at 96c kwh increasing at 12% per year. We did get 1.2% relief because the carbon tax was removed (when all other customers get 8%), what a joke. We are captive customers and are at their mercy, so they are taking full advantage. Its criminal that they can charge whatever they want at their whim. We really need some legal action to sort them out. At this rate we will all be running at a loss soon.
     
  36. surfnski

    surfnski Hard Yards

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    To add insult to injury, I just checked the BOM figures for the last 24hours and they could have made snow last night, humidity fell from 99% to 52%, temperatures just below zero, perfect conditions, except, they have given up making snow this year. Just great !
     
  37. Legs Akimbo

    Legs Akimbo Grumblebum Ski Pass: Gold

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    An alternative theory is that some wonk way back in January has done some "analysis" and has decided that the season, historically, has become marginal in the first week of September and decreed that the resort should close then. Or has seen that snow depth starts declining in September and, without any understanding of the way resorts work, has set an arbitrary date for closure.
     
  38. chriscross

    chriscross One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    BB was entirely skiable this morning, apart from the lower cross country trails which were completely rooted from the husky dog sled trips. I went straight up the summit d/h run, full cover except for one little hole. Summit xc trail was all good up top. No grooming, no tracks. Great skiing on the top section of Champagne and the Hut run was also fun, but after a 10km tour at Gwinear yesterday, I bailed after lunch. Legs said 'no more'. What would have wrecked the skiable terrain would have been snowboards, scraping the soft cover off the runs. Season over, sorry.
     
  39. surfnski

    surfnski Hard Yards

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    I'm envious, I was hoping to get another day in before season end. Mark is a magician with that groomer, and could easily have harvested the top areas and kept the lower runs going. However, a magician alone does not make a circus. The killjoy ringmaster has put his baton away.
     
  40. Serenity

    Serenity Hard Yards

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    Pity the snow cams aren't working. Will be checking out the resort this weekend.
     
  41. Charlie

    Charlie Still the most depraved poster here Ski Pass: Gold

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    Magician or not, you can't make pigshit into strawberry jam
    As chrisscross said, snowboarders and ski scrapers would destroy the cover in no time
    Unless we get a decent drop from the next fronts it's over, except for tobogganing and snowball chucking!
    The snowcams are stuck on last Tuesday, so are useless!
     
  42. Serenity

    Serenity Hard Yards

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    Funny, complain about the snow cams and they start to work, someone's taking notice!
     
  43. chriscross

    chriscross One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    There was talk of opening Hut run for the weekend, but I would not count on it. Suspect the surface would not last long. Did not catch up with "Charlie" this time; Kelly's was closed. Another time.
     
  44. Charlie

    Charlie Still the most depraved poster here Ski Pass: Gold

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    You only have to knock on the door, we were home!
     
  45. surfnski

    surfnski Hard Yards

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    How many are there in your nest, snuggling up to keep warm ?
    You need a "Charlies In" neon sign, u may get more visitors that way.
     
  46. Charlie

    Charlie Still the most depraved poster here Ski Pass: Gold

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    Sounds like a good reason not to have a sign!
    BTW, Kelly's is open all weekend!
     
  47. weerab

    weerab One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    I like your take on the old saying " you can't make a silk purse of out a sow's ear"!
     
  48. Charlie

    Charlie Still the most depraved poster here Ski Pass: Gold

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    Feel free to use it!:thumbs:
     
  49. snowgum

    snowgum One of Us

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    Oops so you Bawbs does have mains power - my mistake.

    This is where an "interested Govt" would step to ensure leasees on crown land aren't ripped off by scrupless energy supplies with no interest in the viability of the customers they're rorting.

    But it really comes to whose are the Govt friends: tenants (small ops on resorts) or partly/ mostly foreign- owned power company??? Mmm that's a toughie! :rolleyes:

    As for not making snow Surfski, in defence of the operator, I think a lot of resorts have now wound back snowmaking considerably, keeping it for the most important bottlenecks and access points.

    IMO BB has a history of not making snow when conditions would have allowed over recent years ( I'm sure I'll be corrected here!) but it's probably in part related to the high cost of power. Possibly a water - license issue too?

    It's a pity, BBaw's average snowcover/weather means when conditions allow, it should be cranking each gun to the max as long as physically possible, not worrying overly at unit electricity costs (c/f other resorts).
    And as I've harped ad nauseum here, have a few runs (inc intermediate) covered T-B by snowmaking.

    Trying to be constructive - I love the mountain and want the resort to succeed, but it's frustrating (even though just as a visitor) to see it held back by some basics, some of which could me resolved by a committed Govt and resort and (quite) a few dollars! ;)
     
  50. surfnski

    surfnski Hard Yards

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    Hi Snowgum, no mistake,
    They do generate the power from LPG stored on the mountain, then they recoup their investment in generators over and over from their captive customers, in fact when demand is low, they have a surplus which they waste into a heatbank.
    Water wasn't an issue this year, there wasn't enough snowmaking to run the tanks down. The other resorts did wind back the snowmaking, but only because they have enough cover to last the season out, not the same at BB, every little bit helps.