Howdy. I’m updating you on our new In-Ground SuperPipe at Mt. Hood Meadows. Here’s the information:

The halfpipe will let resort slope grooming crews provide snowboarders and skiers a competition-quality pipe experience earlier in the season, even with less snow coverage.

“We know how much our snowboarders love the chance to learn and practice aerial moves on the halfpipe,” said Dave Riley, vice president and general manager of Mt. Hood Meadows. “This pipe follows specifications equal to those used for an Olympic halfpipe.”

Sited on the Wallflower Run beneath the Easy Rider chairlift, the pipe is about 500 feet long, 15 feet deep and 65 feet wide when covered with snow. It will be cut with the SuperPipe cutter, featuring up to 17 foot walls. It will also be open for night riding.

It should be usable by Christmas vacation.

Crestline Construction Co. of The Dalles is building the pipe, using erosion control plans developed by Seaborn Engineering of Hood River. The plan makes extensive provision for soil stabilization and revegetation. After the pipe is finished and the slope is recontoured, a mulch containing native plant seeds will be hydroseeded over the ground. A biodegradable mesh fabric will be placed over that, to disperse early-season rainwater and slow runoff and prevent erosion. Rock drains have been designed to capture and disperse runoff settling into the low point of the pipe.

Native grasses and wildflowers will germinate in the spring of 2004 and 2005, permanently stabilizing the slope. In the meantime, vegetation on surrounding ski slopes will help filter silt from any runoff.

For a flash movie on the new SuperPipe at Meadows, visit: http://www.skihood.com/flash/superpipe.swf