Introduction: Giant Snow Ramp
Runner Up in the
Snow Sculpture Speed Contest
Do you live in a state with lots of snow and really cold weather but you have no where to ski? (like Minnesota) Or you just don't feel like spending 20+ bucks to go ski somewhere and you just want to stay home. Then this instructable is for you on how to make a ski resort in your own backyard! Coming soon (hopefully): A box and rail instructable.
Step 1: Materials
This is the fun part where you get to shovel 2 tons of snow.
-Snow (and lots of it, helps when you get a record snowfall)
-Shovels (a small one and a big scooping shovel)
-Cold weather (-1 helps)
-Two friends to help you
-Wood (to help in the making process)
-Time (took me and my friends 2 whole days)
-Lights (for working at night)
-Ladder (to get on your roof)
-Common sense (since you'll be working mainly on top of your roof a you'll be skiing off a jump)
Step 2: Preperations
Start by finding a decent spot to build your ramp and make sure you have plenty of room in your back or front yard (about 50+ feet). Once you know where you'll have your ramp take a big piece of ply wood and stick it behind where all your snow will be so doesn't pile up against your house. Then climb up on your roof and start shoveling that snow (this is where you need that big shovel). At first dump it in a pile and continue pileing it up to the edge of your roof (this is where 2 days and 2 friends come in handy).
Step 3: Sides
Once youv'e gotten a decent pile of snow (doesn't have to be at the edge of the roof just yet) place small pieces of scrap wood on the sides however wide you want it to be (I made mine about 4 feet wide). The purpose of the scrap wood is to basically make a mold and to help shape and compact the snow. Because with out the wood it would take exponetially more and more snow to make a pile and to keep the snow from coneing up. Also you can take the scrap wood and use it to help pack the sides.
Step 4: Packing and Finishing
Now once you have the rough shape of the ramp you can start to have fun while working by taking a sled and going off your roof (don't go to the top of the roof just yet) to start packing down all that light and fluffy snow. In between each run, add a couple shovel fulls of snow since packing it will reduce it's size. Also by this time the lights will come in handy. After 10 runs it should be well enough packed down that you can start splashing water on it, wait 15 minutes and it should be nice and solid (this is where -1 degree temperatures come in handy). After that the ramp should be complete so put on some skis and go have fun. At the top of the roof it helps to build a flat area out of snow, so you can easily get on your skis and sit down on your sled without sliding off the roof.
Step 5: Accessories
Who wants to just ski down a hill? Thats why you build a nice big 3 1/2 foot jump to do awesome tricks off of (like a backflip). The angle and height of the jump may vary for how high you want to go and how far. A lower jump angle will give you more distance than height, and a higher jump angle will give you more height. A good mix of both height and length is a jump with a 45 degree angle. I prefer a little higher degree jump, like say 60 degrees, so it will give more height but less distance. Most jumps at ski resorts are curved to give you a kick which give you lots of height. Also if you build a jump build a nice soft landing since it hurts landing from 5ft up in the air onto solid ice. A good way to find out where you'll end up landing is to pile lots of soft fluffy snow way more than you'll need and way less than you'll need just to play it safe. Then once you know where your going to land, create an elongated and wide jump, with about half as much slope to create a nice gradual soft landing.
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