Straley notes that Mountain States
Snowcats customers who choose to
lease also don’t have to worry about
where to store their snow grooming
equipment at the end of the season.
“We’ll pull the snowcat out of there
so it’s not in their way, and then come
next fall the machine goes back serviced
and ready to go to work,” he said.
Straley says his fleet of snowcats is
one of the largest in the U.S., and that
they are used to prepare downhill ski
courses, build terrain parks and groom
every type of ski trail, even the smallest
trails for fat biking. The company runs
mostly Prinoth snowcats, although
there are a few Favero Lorenzo and
Tucker machines in the mix.
Straley points out that Mountain
States Snowcats strives to hire the best
operators they can get their hands on.
“We really headhunt our grooming
operators to find people with a lot of
experience, so many of our guys will
have 20 years in the machine,” he said.
“We’ve got about 15 operators who are
really key people, and we also have lots
of part-time operators who work for
the major ski resorts four days a week
and who’ll then work for us one or
two days a week.”
The company also offers customers
who have their own snow grooming
“For our limited area,
it’s much better at this
point to contract it out
and let someone else
worry about running
the equipment and
providing the skilled
drivers to do it.”
– Gerry Vernon, Town of Winter Park
personnel training programs for operators
as well as snowcat mechanics.
Mountain States Snowcats’ head office
is in Torrington, Wyo., and there
are numerous work yards located in
Wyoming, Colorado and Michigan.
Straley says his clients are situated all
over the Rocky Mountain region and
into the Midwest as well. The company
has even gone as far afield as Oregon
and Vermont to provide snowcats
Straley says Mountain States Snowcats
has more offerings on top of snow
grooming services and snowcat sales
The company provides snow removal
and seasonal road opening services,
and it also offers transportation to
cell towers and remote locations during
wintertime. In addition, Mountain
States Snowcats will help out with vehicle
recovery for customers who have
machines that are snowed in.
For the past five years, the town of
Winter Park, Colo., a popular ski destination
about 60 miles west of Denver,
has commissioned snow grooming services
from Mountain States Snowcats.
Winter Park has a number of Nordic
ski trails running through the community.
The town’s capital projects, parks
and trails manager, Gerry Vernon, says
the trails are heavily used by residents
and visitors throughout the winter, so
proper maintenance is important.
According to Vernon, a team from
Mountain States Snowcats arrives each
fall, cleaning and grubbing the trails to
ensure snow grooming equipment can
get through, and then begins operations
as soon as there’s enough snow to
keep it groomed. The trails are groomed
on a twice-a-week schedule and also as
needed after significant snowfalls.
“I’ll call Jeremy if there’s been a big
dump of snow, and they will get right
on it,” said Vernon. “They’ve been spot
on with great customer service and
we’ve never had any problems with
them responding to issues that arise
during the winter season.”
In addition, Winter Park relies on
Mountain States Snowcats to groom a
popular sledding hill that’s located in
a downtown park. The company is also
contracted to clear snow from a road
that connects the community to the
nearby Continental Divide.
‘It’s kind of a tourist draw, so the
county and the town share the bill to
get a snowcat up there and clear the
road in late May, early June so people
can get up there earlier,” said Vernon.
24 September 2018 | snowopsmag.com