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Having seen the Sun Valley system this past week (not actually running) it looks really nice w no ugly hoses and exposed pipes all over the place. And the fact that the Guns lined over 3100 vertical on multiple trails was pretty darn impressive.

Ian McCluskey said:
Don't get me wrong, his systems are incredibly high tech and impressive!! In Europe automation has been working like a dream. For the east, we need a combination of everything it seems. Having a couple automated trails would be awesome. Set up your main trails that need the most run time and resurfacing on auto so that start and stop is quicker but also we have more time to focus on the more challenging trails.
Was just reading that Sun Valley has been semi-automated since 1989! It takes time to implement and money but like you said look what the system looks like now, clean and efficient

It be nice to see trails like Sunday Punch and Right Stuff automated and then give them a fresh blast of snow every night!
 
Ian McCluskey said:

Don't get me wrong, his systems are incredibly high tech and impressive!! In Europe automation has been working like a dream. For the east, we need a combination of everything it seems. Having a couple automated trails would be awesome. Set up your main trails that need the most run time and resurfacing on auto so that start and stop is quicker but also we have more time to focus on the more challenging trails.

I don't know if fully automated is the way to go in the East, but Loon uses the HKD Klick semi-auto hydrants.  If you ever ski over there, check them out.  Same SV10 guns we have, but the hydrant is a single handle and the airline off the pipe to the gun looks like your typical garage compressed air hose.  It supposedly autodrains when you shut it down too, decreasing the turn on and off time/manpower needed.  The only issue is that it is designed for a stationary gun.  So early season, you'd need the capability to hook up trandtional hose/hydrants when they pull the guns out on Punch.  Loon's setup does have the old hydrants still in place mostly,so that could work.  (note:  Loon has these on its high traffic trails off the Gondola peak).

Though neither SR/SL has jumped on those.  Makes me wonder what the cost/benefit equation works out to even with semi-automating.

We have one semi auto KLIK hydrant we have tried. Trouble is the guns have to be within a certain distance from the hydrant. Cascades is a trail that they may work on but essentially it doesn't make sense to switch over unless you're redoing a whole pipe for a trail or instilling new

I hear you.  Worked at Loon just due to the proximity of guns to the pipes on the trails they installed these hydrants.  Here, we tend to have more distance between pipes and guns or move guns around during the season (Punch for example).

Ian McCluskey said:

We have one semi auto KLIK hydrant we have tried. Trouble is the guns have to be within a certain distance from the hydrant. Cascades is a trail that they may work on but essentially it doesn't make sense to switch over unless you're redoing a whole pipe for a trail or instilling new

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