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Putting the SKI in Pond SKIms

Mar 4, 2019

There is no other way to burst into spring skiing other than with a pond skim. Many ski resorts are gearing up for spring by creating man-made ponds for all skiers and riders to test their skills. The question is will they skim or swim?

Everyone knows the end of the ski season is near when they see the snowcat starting to push snow to form the pond. The man hours are started by digging, shaping and building up the walls of the pond. Next, comes the lining and the tarps that will hold in the water. Snowmaking hoses and pumps are used to fill the pond. Finishing touches are added by smoothing out the entry and exit to the pond. Once the pond is ready it is time to throw in the beach balls and pool floats!

"Once the pond is ready it is time to throw in the beach balls and pool floats!"

 

McIntyre Ski Area just held our 9th annual pond skim and this was the best year yet! Not only were the costumes on point, but we had some of the best splashes ever seen! Over the past 10 years we have had ponds over 90 feet long, but this year we brought it back into a shorter 65-foot pond with the hope that more contestants could skim the entire length of the pond. The end result, still the same; some contestants skimmed, and some made some epic splashes!

Like many other mountains, McIntyre uses the pond skim as a reason to throw a Hawaiian Luau Party! Everyone gets dressed up in their grass skirts and Hawaiian shirts. This year we made a snow bar right next to our outside grille and it was a huge hit. The bar was constructed with built-in wells for beer and ice buckets, shelves for the liquor display and of course everything was super cold because of the snow!

A pond skim would not be complete if there wasn’t a costume category. Many contestants will go along with the Hawaiian theme, but some take it upon themselves to create a memorable costume. Among the many costumes, this year at McIntyre's Pond Skim was a shark, a flying cupid that went airborne and double ejected his skis at the same time and McIntyres’ General Manager, Ross Boisvert had an inflatable pink flamingo costume chosen for him. A costume category brings in a whole lot more comedy to any contest.

"Among the many costumes, this year at McIntyre's Pond Skim was a shark, a flying cupid that went airborne and double ejected his skis at the same time and McIntyres’ General Manager, Ross Boisvert had an inflatable pink flamingo costume chosen for him. A costume category brings in a whole lot more comedy to any contest."

 

The “water squad” also plays a huge role in a pond skim. The brave individuals pulled from the rental shop and snowsports who suit up into wetsuits and take on the cold water to help the non-skimmers (aka sinkers and splashers) remove their skis or snowboards and help them get out of the water quickly are the ones to thank for keeping everyone safe and the contest moving steadily. The “water squad” also creates some great entertainment for the crowd when waiting for the next contestants to take on the pond.

"Pond skims have become a great way to end the ski season with a bang or a splash!"

 

Pond skims have become a great way to end the ski season with a bang or a splash! Drawing in a huge crowd to not only a party, but great achievements of being able to cross the pond for the first time, the comedy of wipeouts and splashes and the feel of a nice spring day is what makes for a successful pond skim at any resort big or small!

NH Pond Skim Schedule

March 9

McIntyre Ski Area

March 16

Pats Peak

March 23

Cranmore Mountain Resort

Black Mountain

March 30

Bretton Woods

Mount Sunapee Resort

March 31

King Pine Ski Area

April 6

Gunstock Mountain Resort

Ragged Mountain Resort

Waterville Valley Resort

 

Written By
Shaley Bergeron

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