News

April 18, 2019 | 04:18 pm
Finally got to meet the guy that helps take care of the trails.. We absolutely appreciate the hard work and hrs you all put in to make our time on the mountain awesome.. I think I speak for us all when I say thank you thank you.. Cant wait for next year.
April 18, 2019 | 01:45 am
That's a season wrap for grooming. You can still ride as long as you are on 6" of snow, and upper areas are still deep. Thank you to those who visited Grand Lake throughout the season. We appreciate all the guests to our little winter community at the end of the road. Looking forward to new and returning guests alike for next season! Grooming operations took place from November 19th, 2018 to April 14th, 2018 with the Grand Lake town trail open from December 1st to April 1st. Spent 126 nights rearranging snow flakes with 991 snowcat hours, and an extra 250 hours in everything else that is demanded for grooming over 6,500 miles this season. The work doesn't stop when the snow does! There is still extensive grant writing, summer equipment/ building/ sign/ trail maintenance, meetings, trail cleanups, emails, phone calls and more to be taken care of in the months before winter returns. In addition, all other board members also have projects for which they are volunteering their valuable time over the summer, some that can be very challenging. A big thank you to them and their dedication to snowmobiling in Grand Lake! Summer is great in Grand Lake, hardly needs promoting; here are two great pictures from 18/19 (photo credit to Jeremy Mercier on the first one,) trying to entice you to return for next winter! Thank you all! Groomer phone (970) 531-8872
April 14, 2019 | 08:59 am
Why did everyone turn around? Sherman finally slid. Commonly a high debris avavlanche as it comes through the trees, so don't dig in too deep. Looks like wet slab that refroze, so probably happened around Teusday. Pretty small relative to the path, I've seen these as a full connected avalanche in the past.
April 14, 2019 | 08:39 am
I am missing grooming already.... Snowed all morning, riders reported knee deep snow at upper elevations today, where winter returned with new snow and cooler temperatures over the past 4 days. Very nice to be grooming this type of snow in mid-April, and trails are amazing for spring. Off trail was good today, and will be similar tomorrow morning, maybe add in forecasted bluebird. About 2 dozen vehicles between Idleglen (nearly snow covered today) and the Kawuneeche berm. Thank you all for riding Grand Lake, pack up that parking lot again tomorrow! Took the newer cat with a larger fuel tank and groomed 63 miles, spreading out coverage before our Forest Service permit ends (4/15.) Out on Stillwater, which is thin but covered the first mile before vastly improving. Around Gold Run, through Gravel and down/up the north side of Stillwater Pass to Vagabond Ranch, this will hold snow a long time. Down to Intersection "I," up Pony Park trail, around the Figure-8 and back to Idleglen on middle and lower Kawuneeche. Miles of fresh ribbon out there for the taking (picture #4 and #6,) with the 5th picture of all the untouched snow on the popular side of Gravel. The first five pictures taken at the trail high point on Gravel where the cat is sitting on snow deep enough it will be there in late September. Get out to enjoy fresh snow and great trails with a bluebird spring Sunday on it's way! Groomer phone: (970) 531-8872
April 14, 2019 | 07:52 am
Please do not leave your dead sled in the middle of the groomed trail! Notice that the groomed trail (Shortcuts) in the picture and the cat are the same width, and the cat is longer than the trail is wide, so I can't turn around. I am only one person in a cat and if I can't move it I have no choice but to blade it off the trail into the trees, don't be that guy/girl...
April 12, 2019 | 07:08 am
Snow showers continued at middle and upper elevations with a dusting down low and 3-6" new up high in the last 24 hours. Temperatures stayed cool all day and in the mid teens tonight with light snow showers. Kawuneeche out of Idleglen remains fully covered, Stillwater has some exposed dirt just after the berm; we snow cover this when grooming, but it'll show up if the sun is shining. Off trail improved with some recent fresh snow and cooler temperatures. Groomed from Idleglen to Stillwater Pass, going through the decks of Gravel in blowing wind and fast moving clouds. Up Pony Park trail, around the Figure-8, and back to Idleglen on Kawuneeche. Kawuneeche will see the longest life during spring, so spent some time farming snow during three passes from intersection "N" to Idleglen. First picture taken at the top of South Supply, looking good for 4/12 and the light bar. Sunsets are usually beautiful during April, get out and experience it! Last weekend for grooming as our Forest Service permit ends on April 15th, although you can ride on the snow past that date. Would be glad to see Idleglen full of vehicles this weekend, and Grand Lake businesses welcome you as well! Groomer phone: (970) 531-8872
April 11, 2019 | 05:40 am
A couple inches of new on top of snow down low, nothing stuck if it didn't fall on snow pack. About 8" of new snow at middle and upper elevations. It didn't start cooling off until about 9:30 am, took a bit longer to get workable snow. New snow covered any thin or exposed spots, all white out the back of the cat. Definitely collapsing and drop-outs on the trail at lower, southern facing aspects, but didn't take long to leave that behind. South facing areas have seen some sun and heat in the last 5 days, north facing and upper areas still somewhat protected. Signs have been removed but we left a trail to follow as shown in the first picture below. Groomed lower Stillwater through Gravel from the south and down to intersection "I" to head up Pony Park trail. Around the Figure-8, and down middle and lower Kawuneeche to Idleglen. Kawuneeche is the better trail from Idleglen. Coldest night in a week with upper single digit temperatures and scattered clouds. Our grooming permit with the Forest Service ends on April 15th, though you can still ride on snow after grooming ends. For now, it's April 11th and full groomed coverage out of Idleglen to access the high alpine! Groomer phone: (970) 531-8872
April 07, 2019 | 07:34 am
A heavy dusting of snow at upper elevations and the lightest dusting down low. Partly cloudy skies with 28° at 1:45 am. Snow came through in quick squalls tonight, accompanied by short bursts of high winds and clouds/fog, first 3 pictures. Upper trails remain in good spring shape, while lower trails can show more effects of April. A bit of snirt the first 50 yards past the berm on Stillwater, then full coverage with no exposed water and looking excellent for April 7th. Kawuneeche has full coverage from the berm, which we started out on tonight. Up North Supply Loop, down Pony Park trail, through Gravel and down lower Stillwater to Idleglen. Picked up most of the signs, one more night and we will be complete. All pictures above 10,250ft, aim for this elevation or higher for better conditions. Fourth picture showing the definition of dust on crust, and the grooming left behind in the fifth. Great crowd in Idleglen today, last picture, with another 7 vehicles parked at Kawuneeche trailhead (avoiding the parking lot mud) just down the road. Great to see all the riders, and a few hikers, enjoying April on the snow; thank you for visiting Grand Lake's trail system! Groomer phone: (970) 531-8872
April 06, 2019 | 07:16 am
Spring riding with solid, ice scratcher, explorable snow in the early morning giving way to softer corn and eventually slush through the day. Warm days and just below freezing at night during the past week. Full coverage from Idleglen on both trails for tomorrow. Lower Stillwater still looking fine with no exposed water on the trail, reinforced just after the berm with snow. Pulled some more signs tonight, but still just enough poles to help navigate Gravel and above tree line areas for tomorrow. Also still some intersection signs out to help navigation. In other areas where signs have been removed, you can look for the groomed path or "corduroy" (pictures) in the snow. Tonight went out on Kawuneeche, up North Supply Loop, down to "E," through Willow and down Pony Park trail. Around Gravel from north and back to Idleglen on lower Stillwater. Some nice trails for April 6th as shown in the pictures below. Higher elevations are holding the better conditions for riding this weekend. Lower elevations are quicker to succumb to the spring temperatures, so head up top for great views, better snow or both! Groomer phone: (970) 531-8872
April 04, 2019 | 07:18 am
Highest of elevations received 4-6" in the last 24 hours, no new snow down low. Tonight it's a balmy 29° at 1:30am under cloudy skies. Spring conditions with cold mornings leaving solid snow (bring your ice scratchers,) until the sun and/or warm temperatures starts the transition to corn and finally slush. Finally found the magic hour on lower Stillwater, which was about midnight, it looks great for April 4th with no exposed water. Full snow coverage on both trails leaving Idleglen. Started picking up signs tonight. Intersections signs around Gravel, some directional orange signs, and stop and stop ahead signs on the Shortcuts have been removed. We left every other pole over Gravel so it can be easily navigated this weekend. Still about 2-3 nights picking signs and grooming, come out and enjoy it! Groomed lower and middle Kawuneeche, Shortcuts, and North Supply Loop, which is the flattest of the Figure-8. Down Pony Park trail, through Gravel from the south, up to Stillwater Pass and back to Idleglen on lower Stillwater. Trails are good and get even flatter as elevation is gained. Explore-a-snow in the morning giving way to softer snow as the sun shines. A few shots from the night showing fresh in front and groomed out the back. While town trail is closed, businesses remain welcoming to guests, get some riding in this weekend! Groomer phone: (970) 531-8872
April 02, 2019 | 04:44 pm
An incredible, can't miss event on May 4th, 2019 at Rabbit Ears Pass Colorado, with the benefit of assisting funding for the Colorado Snowmobile Association and the trails you enjoy. Events by people like this are part of the exciting future of our sport. Last year's donations paid for the insurance of every club in Colorado, translating to extra money for winter trail maintenance all over the state. Help fund the sport you love during a day jam packed with snowmobiling fun for all ages!
April 01, 2019 | 07:46 am
About an inch in the last 24 hours, mostly up by Gravel. Very good spring riding available around the high country of Colorado, last picture from Jeremy Mercier. Explore and climb in the mornings on a solid snowpack, then enjoy the sun on corn snow trails in the afternoon. Groomers are in excellent shape for cracking open April, full coverage leaving from Idleglen, leading to that nice spring alpine riding. Grand Lake town trail will be closing tomorrow morning after being open from December 1st to April 1st. A big thank you to the staff at Rocky Mtn Nat'l Park for all their time and effort on this very important trail for the town Grand Lake in the winter! We'll start peeling some signs off the mountain this week, grooming while we do it which will maintain the great trail conditions. Last to come off will be the poles across above treeline areas so riders can navigate the trail. We plan on grooming for the coming weekend. Tonight started on lower and middle Kawuneeche, around the Figure-8, down Pony Park trail, decked out Gravel, around Gold Run and back to Idleglen on lower Stillwater. While town trail may be closed, Grand Lake is still welcoming of visiting winter enthusiasts. First 2 pictures display some of the miles of ribbon ready to ride! Groomer phone (970) 531-8872
March 31, 2019 | 08:44 am
Idleglen parking lot packed and overflowing down the road, even a truck and 4 place+ riding from our shop at intersection "M." Great to see everyone out enjoying winter for as long as it happens! Just into the single digits under a clear sky at 2:45am after a 40°+ day and a few inches of fresh from Friday night. Spring conditions prevail, solid in the morning with slush appearing as the sun grabs the snow. Trails out of Idleglen showing full coverage with no exposed water. Threw some more snow at the south facing bank of lower Stillwater for reinforcement. Groomed out on lower Kawuneeche and North and South Supply to "A," below which puddles in the trail make grooming inefficient at best. Across middle Kawuneeche, around the Figure-8, and down Pony Park trail. Through Gravel from the north, grooming both Gold Run and "X" to "Y," up to "I" to meet the pass out of Pony Park and back to Idleglen on lower Stillwater. Spent some extra time on lower Stillwater, which was beaten out from a sunny, busy Saturday in Idleglen. Picture of our 2015 Bison X, acquired with a great sales experience earlier this season from Mountain States Snowcats; check them out if your in the market for a used snowcat. Barely missed the alpenglow tonight. A nice day of spring riding on tap for tomorrow, get out and have fun on the snow! Groomer phone: (970) 531-8872
March 30, 2019 | 07:22 am
Been moving snow toward the south facing bank of lower Stillwater all season for the pay off seen tonight; not a single puddle or even spot of translucent snow on March 30th. Beautiful!! Kawuneeche is also devoid of exposed free water so both trails from Idleglen are fully snow covered and looking ready for riding tomorrow. Double passed the first mile out of Idleglen on Stillwater and Kawuneeche. Several puddles in the trail below intersection "A," got down to the bottom of the upper Spur trail tonight before snow started falling apart. Although town trail through the Park is open for this weekend, below Hwy 34 is thin and icy, while to the west, County Rd 492 is down to mud due to plowing. Groomed lower and middle Kawuneeche, North and South Supply as close to the Forest Border as we could get, and around the flattened out Figure-8. Down Pony Park trail, through Gravel from the north (time lapse above tree line,) groomed middle Stillwater to meet the pass out of Pony Park, and back to Idleglen on lower Stillwater. Perhaps an inch of new snow up high, nothing new down low. Spring riding everywhere with solid snow early and softening as the sun shines. Groomer phone: (970) 531-8872
March 26, 2019 | 08:03 am
Spring riding in full force with cold, solid mornings giving way quickly to softening snow as the sun shines bright. Upper elevations haven't seen as much warmth yet and have a great base. Lower areas have been seeing some melting towards Grand Lake. Town trail is open, but snow is falling apart fast below Hwy 34 and Cty Rd 492 at the west end has melted to mud due to plowing. Trails leaving from Idleglen are fully covered, and after the first 1/2 mile out of Idleglen both Stillwater and Kawuneeche start to flatten out. Tonight groomed out on Kawuneeche and did two passes each on both North and South Supply to the Forest Border. Around the Figure-8 with all looking flat. Down Pony Park trail, through Gravel, around Gold Run and groomed out lower Stillwater to Idleglen. Come and get some riding on our great base around the Grand Lake trail system! Groomer phone: (970) 531-8872
March 25, 2019 | 10:01 am
A nice little 4am storm rolling through at all elevations. About an inch down low, and 2-4 inches up high in the last 24 hours that is surprisingly light for the temperatures, easily brushed off the cat. Took a while to cool off tonight with sustained cloud cover, and lower elevations didn't want to concede. New snow covered most tracks up high from today, and was creating waves above tree line (Gravel in the time lapse.) Mid and upper trails still holding out well while lower trails saw the effects of warm weather and traffic today. Groomed out on Kawuneeche, up and down South Supply until snow got wet and sticky around intersection "A." Across middle Kawuneeche, around the Figure-8, and down Pony Park trail. Up to Stillwater Pass, down to intersection "S," and back to the Pass to go through Gravel. Back to Idleglen on Stillwater, doubling up on a couple sections ridden wide. Tomorrow could offer some decent riding for late March, especially in the morning; ride the fresh before the sun does! Groomer phone: (970) 531-8872
March 24, 2019 | 08:11 am
Cloudy with a few flurries rolling through during a warm and busy Saturday. A few inches of new snow in the last 48 hours at most elevations. Cleared off later tonight with 11° at 2:15 am. Still some untouched areas of Gravel visible through the windshield tonight. Middle and upper trails are holding out well and looking good. Lower trails can get rough from warmth and exposure during the day. Conditions improve about a mile or so from the trailheads. Town trail is great through Rocky Mtn Nat'l Park, however it's bordered by not much snow below Hwy 34 and Cty Rd 492 down to mud due to plowing for 1/2 a mile. Trails leaving Idleglen are fully covered, the first mile out on Stillwater can be bumpy on inside corners, with improvement as elevation is gained and southern exposure lost. Groomed lower Stillwater, doubling up on the first mile and some other ridden out sections. Decked out Gravel from the south, up to Stillwater Pass before heading down to intersection "K" and going up Pony Park trail. Around the Figure-8, down to the Golf Course Rd. at the edge of Grand Lake using North and South Supply. Back to Idleglen on lower Kawuneeche. Groomer phone: (970) 531-8872
March 23, 2019 | 11:59 pm
Six snowmobilers trespassed all over our property about an hour ago at Vagabond Ranch. I wish to thank your group for posting on your maps to respect private property. This is our home. We've thoroughly enjoyed the random snowmobilers who stop in after getting lost or don't have enough fuel to get back to Grand Lake, or simply are wondering what is this place. We appreciate the friendliness of the snowmobilers, a fine breed of sports people loving life, as we sometimes encounter them when we're on the shared road. Please, if you find out who this could be, call the Sheriff's Office. Many thanks to the snowmobilers who show courtesy. Those are ones we like to help.
March 23, 2019 | 07:03 am
Just a bit of a cloud deck hanging over Gravel (1st picture,) alpenglow was way to the east, just barely seen through the thick veil of non-precipitating moisture. Two inches of new snow nearly everywhere, should help cool sleds tomorrow, adding just enough to get some snow flying. Cloudy today, and this evening we left in the fog to start the shift. At 1:15am it's 23° under a cloudy sky. Second picture of Hot Dog Park without many tracks in the new snow that fell this afternoon. Groomed Stillwater out of Idleglen, through the low visibility of Gravel, and up Pony Park trail. Around the Figure-8 and down North Supply to the Gateway Inn at the edge of Grand Lake. The trail through Rocky Mtn Nat'l Park is good and covered, but Cty Rd 492 is melted to mud due to plowing during the winter. Up South Supply, across middle Kawuneeche and back to Idleglen on lower Kawuneeche. Spring riding with a bit of new snow on top of a great base to keep sleds thinking it's winter, come on up and enjoy some riding in Grand Lake! Groomer phone: (970) 531-8872
March 21, 2019 | 07:25 am
Got a good base to balance the spring temperatures and bluebird sunny days, all combining to deliver great late March riding. Seems like the season just flies! Easy to remember that Thanksgiving Saturday storm with sleds stuck everywhere on the trail. Currently it's explore-a-snow early on with softening conditions as the day matures. Tonight it's 11° with blazing lunar light on the snowpack at 1:30am. Trails are looking very nice for mid-late March, full coverage on all Forest Service trails, and mid-upper elevation trails are flat. Park trail has great snow but is becoming an island with mud on Cty Rd 492, and a melting trail below Hwy 34. We'll aim to get to the Golf Course rd for the weekend. Leaving late to let snow cool down, started on lower Stillwater from Idleglen to intersection "P, " through Gravel from the north, and groomed Gold Run to Stillwater. Up Pony Park trail, around the Figure-8, and back to Idleglen on lower Kawuneeche. Spring riding is here in Grand Lake, enjoy the sun and snow! Groomer phone: (970) 531-8872
March 19, 2019 | 08:31 am
Spring time has arrived! Warm temperatures to mid elevations with lots of sun makes for some very pleasant afternoons. Snow on the trail is solid in the morning, and slushy in the afternoon. Have to wait until about 7pm (alpenglow time, tonight was deep pink!) for snow to cool off enough and prevent it from clogging in the blade, even so rolling up the mashed potato snow. Upper elevations can still hold decent snow, especially looking in north facing or shady areas. Softness still rules, some big new holes just off the trail. Lots of great traffic weekend packed out most of the easy snow, some uncommonly ridden areas were even packed on Gravel. Thank you to all the riders packing Idleglen down the road and enjoying Grand Lake from town this weekend! A few flakes did fall, felt the heaviest squall was captured in the picture below. Moonlight diffusing through light clouds with 21° at 2:30am. Groomed lower Stillwater, decked out Gravel from the south, up Pony Park trail and around the Figure-8. Down North Supply to the edge of Grand Lake at the Golf Course rd. Up South Supply, there and back on middle Kawuneeche, returning to Idleglen on lower Kawuneeche. While most of the town trail is looking good, about a 1/2 mile of cty rd 492 has melted to mud due to plowing. Leaving from Idleglen is full on snow coverage. Blue skies, pleasant temps, town trail open, and nice base depth... some good spring riding now in Grand Lake! Groomer phone: (970) 531-8872
March 17, 2019 | 07:29 am
Right into the center of Grand Lake on March 16th, it's been a few years since we've had the late snow to be in town mid March. The trail west of highway 34 is very good, although Cty rd 492 has partially melted to mud due to plowing. Down into town, east of highway 34 saw some sun today with puddles showing up in some areas. Upper elevation rules the roost. Pictures of our beautiful terrain taken today, courtesy of Jeremy Mercier, showing off some great available riding. Second picture shows the crown of a big slide through the trees on Barnes hill. Check out all the untouched sparse tree riding in the third picture. Around Kauffman Creek was done on Friday night. Tonight groomed lower Kawuneeche, North and South Supply into Grand Lake, around the Figure-8, down Pony Park trail, through Gravel from the north, and back to Idleglen on lower Stillwater. Blue skies, nice temperatures, deep base, and good snow up top is showing off Colorado's good side! Groomer phone: (970) 531-8872
March 16, 2019 | 09:29 pm
Just a reminder...had to turn around twice today after encountering 2 different sets of mom and baby moose...they have no escape with 8' snow banks and steep drop offs so they will charge....look for fresh droppings as you ride and slow up to give them adequate time to get out of the way...the groomed trails save them energy so let's give them that!
March 15, 2019 | 07:12 am
Beautiful out there, especially at and above middle elevations! Snow up high maintained it's quality and added another 2-4" in the last 24 hours with cloudy skies most of the day up on the mountain. Spring time showed up for a bit down low. Snow is very deep after 2+ feet up high in the past 48 hours, and can still be bottomless in areas. Drifting and cross loading were featured today, with clearing skies and stars shining tonight. Pictures do weak justice to the incredible, almost surreal, alpenglow. Even the snow I was standing on was alight! Went towards Kauffman but it was untouched and very deep with double digit fuel usage per hour, going downhill. Didn't even get to the drifts before fuel issues were going to be evident. We may take another implement tomorrow night so we can get around and make it back to the bulk tank. Across the top shelf road of Gold Run, out to the spine of Little Gravel, back through the Gold Run shelf and across Gravel in that alpenglow. Up Pony Park trail, around the Figure-8 and groomed North and South Supply into Grand Lake. Back to Idleglen on lower Kawuneeche. Please keep an eye on avalanche danger at avalanche.state.co.us. We just got through a two week storm cycle, lots of fresh snow and blue skies could make for a great weekend around Grand Lake! Groomer phone: (970) 531-8872
March 14, 2019 | 09:11 am
Mother Nature pushing back! One of the best wrap around storms in a long time, hard to remember the last one like this. They load snow and drift from a different direction, it's obvious when it happens. Pushing snow with the tracks everywhere at upper elevations! At least two feet in most higher areas, with a ton of shifting wind and drifting, snow is light and quality for mid March. A foot of slightly heavier fresh in Idlegeln and the snow continues to fall. The drifting was crazy tonight, knife edge ridges and huge swells on the trail (time lapse,) even more insane off the trail. Sure we groomed tonight but, you won't be able to tell. Tracks were getting covered within minutes going over Gravel. Better conditions in Willow and Hot Dog Park, at least when we went through. Because of the drifiting in the video not many people if anyone made it to Gravel today, so lots of fresh tomorrow including the trail groomed tonight in a blizzard. Back of Stillwater very deep and blown in grooming down to Sherman. Riding will be on top of it's game tomorrow! Direct from Colorado Avalanche Information Center (CAIC:) avalanche.state.co.us "Backcountry avalanche conditions are very dangerous. Avoid crossing or traveling below backcountry avalanche terrain and other steep slopes. Natural and human triggered avalanches are very likely. They could break hundreds or thousands of feet wide and run to valley floors. Avalanches are impacting lower elevations and locations that have not seen avalanche activity in recent years. A potent storm with wet, heavy snow and strong shifting winds will keep avalanche conditions dangerous." These are true dangers! With very few slides releasing around our system in the last cycle, the new snow load could tip some areas. Check avalanche danger and discuss with your group before every outing. Difficult to tell when or what will slide as the conditions by CAIC state. Very important to have avalanche gear, know how to use it and how to travel in avalanche terrain. Please be safe and alert so you can come back to ride again and again! Groomer phone: (970) 531-8872