Snowmass Alpacas

Genetics by Design

Breeding Alpacas for More Than 30 Years

making-of-champions-auctionsAnnual Auction The much-anticipated annual "The Snowmass Making of Champions" TM Auction has become a place for serious breeders to meet and examine some of the finest animals available for sale worldwide. It is simply the best place to purchase alpaca genetics to boost your own herd. In addition, it is a place for worldwide breeders and luminaries to meet and have a fun but education-filled weekend. The auction is an educational event as much as a sale. Seminars help attendees add to their knowledge base. The hands-on learning workshops provide real world examples of what to look for and what to avoid. Effective breeding directives are explained and illustrated by the proximity of such remarkable animals. In addition, alpaca industry experts are invited to lecture and teach. The auction has become the largest grossing auction in the United States.
breeding-for-royal-fiberSnowmass Alpacas: Visionaries in Royal Alpaca Production Snowmass has reached a thirty-year goal with over 90% of the Snowmass herd possessing tested fleeces of Super Royal, Royal and Baby Grade. Super Royal (13-17), Royal (18-19), Baby (20-22.5) The Snowmass herd is world renowned as an example of some of the finest animals alive. Their health, vigor, beauty and beautiful phenotypes are truly remarkable.  Their luxuriant fiber is avidly sought after by other top breeders and most especially, textile manufacturers. Each and every year, the Snowmass herd becomes finer, more advanced and more admired. The demand and understanding for FINENESS and bright Elite alpaca fiber is now one of the guiding principles for breeders.   Snowmass Alpacas has been selectively breeding for 30 years to acquire solid proven genetics for FINENESS, BRIGHTNESS, UNIFORMITY and CONSISTENCY of fleece.
snowmass-sends-two-bales-to-the-alpaca-blanket-project From Carol Lundberg:  "I can tell you that your fiber was absolutely AWESOME!  Except for 48 lbs that was too long, all the rest was grade 1 or 2 (usable for Pendleton) and some of the nicest we've seen!"
snowmass-alpacacas-wins-the-golden-fleece-award We did not show in the US this year as promised but we did send some fleeces to WORLD FLEECE SHOW. SNOWMASS ALPACACAS WINS THE GOLDEN FLEECE AWARD! We did not show in the US this year as promised but we did send some fleeces to WORLD FLEECE SHOW. The Golden Fleece Competition in Oxford, England featured entries from around the world in both Huacaya and Suri classes. We are honored to have participated and even more honored to have placed first in the huacaya division. To see all the results of the competition CLICK HERE
-first-quechua-son-in-europe- Snowmass sells half interest in Snowmass Quechua’s Innovation to SIMAGI ALPAKAS in Germany. “THE WORLD ALPACA MARKET PLACE IS ALIVE AND GROWING AND BECOMING MORE INOVATIVE IN ADVANCED ALPACA GENETICS.”   “THE WORLD ALPACA MARKET PLACE IS ALIVE AND GROWING AND BECOMING MORE INOVATIVE IN ADVANCED ALPACA GENETICS.” CONGRATULATIONS to Gisbert Henning of SIMAGI ALPAKAS in GERMANY. Now partner in purchase of half interest in one of the leading Quechua son's - Snowmass Quechua's Innovation. Snowmass Quechua's Innovation is in Quarantine for his journey to stand as the FIRST QUECHUA line in EUROPE! Click to view Snowmass Quechua's Innovation details. Click here to visit SIMAGI Alpaka's website.

Developing Alpaca Fiber World-Wide

new-video-of-alonso-burgos-presenting-snowmass-bales Already I can tell you that, in the more than fifty years we have in the business, we have never seen a brighter nor a more uniform alpaca lot at the sorting plant. ~ Alonso Burgos, Manager of PROALSA & Grupo Inca Alpaca Fiber Purchasing Company of Peru SNOWMASS ROYAL CLIP (5) Bales in PERU. Alonso Burgos, Manager of PROALSA & Grupo Inca Alpaca Fiber Purchasing Company of Peru, has reported that five Royal Bales of fiber from the U.S.A. have completed sorting. Details were announced in Phoenix, Arizona at the Making of Champions Winners’ Circle Sale, last February 24 & 25th 2012.   Mr. Burgos reports: "We have finished working with your fiber at the sorting plant. Already I can tell you that, in the more than fifty years we have in the business, we have never seen a brighter nor a more uniform alpaca lot at the sorting plant. It was a real extraordinary event to see the sorting ladies going over your material and being amazed over the brightness of...
sale-of-fiber-to-our-back-40 Snowmass Alpacas sold a total of 1,672 pounds of alpaca fiber to Lynn Edens of Our Back 40 in November for a record price of $53,504. Four bales were royal white, totaling 1,212 pounds. The remaining two bales were Royal beige and weighed 460 pounds. That’s an average of $8,917.00 per bale. Lynn Edens commented to Snowmass Alpacas, “Let me say right up front that I'd be thrilled to purchase all of your royal grade fiber. The success of the Our Back 40's goal of branding American alpaca fiber as being of uniquely high quality in consumers' eyes is ultimately dependent on having sufficient supply of the very finest alpaca with which to make the premium products that can demonstrate that. Obviously, your bales would go a long way towards assuring that.   “But no less important to the long run is the impact that your participation in the effort would have on the alpaca breeding community, which has long looked to you for leadership, not just with regard to...
snowmass-alpacas-and-kumari-rugs-breaking-news BREAKING NEWS FROM NEPAL! Snowmass Kumari rugs has officially launched their collection of Hand Knotted rugs for sale. http://www.kumarirugs.com/ After a long journey from the bailing room of Snowmass Alpacas in Sandpoint to the high Himalayas of Nepal our first hand knotted sample rugs made exclusively from Snowmass Alpaca fiber have arrived. They are everything we expected and more. This is the first time ever that the Nepalese people have ever worked with alpaca. This is a historic moment for “alpaca” and the beginning of a wonderful relationship. Please read the story on the process by which these beautiful handmade rugs are made below. If you are interested in prices and ordering one of the treasured collectable Snowmass-Kumari Alpaca wool rugs please email us This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it   Snowmass Alpacas joins partnership with Kumari Rugs and Tapestries in the  first production line of Nepalese and Tibetan Alpaca Hand-Knotted Rugs and...
american-fiber-travels-to-overseas-to-peru In 2011, Don and Julie Skinner of Snowmass Alpacas and owners of share of Quechua Enterprises, sent several bales of Royal and Baby alpaca fiber to Perú after having collected it from their finest animals over time. Julie Skinner reports, “The five bales that we sent to Peru were from our finest white fleeced alpacas. Each fleece was individually tested via Yocom McColl testing lab in Denver, Colorado. The ranges were from 13 microns to 18 microns. The average was 16 micron. We had one bale we rated XXXRoyal which was all 16 microns and below and every fleece had a high degree of brightness. Once in Perú, they were opened and re-sorted at Inca Tops by professional sorting women alongside of the #1 wool buyer in Perú and the General Manager of the largest Alpaca Company in the world. The video clip was presented of the unveiling of the Snowmass Bales in Phoenix Arizona at our Making of Champions Sale and is now available on our website, www.snowmassalpacas.com. It was a very proud...
snowmass-royal-bales-arrive-in-peru Snowmass Royal Bales Arrive in Peru It has been a long and arduous journey, but Snowmass Alpacas, in conjunction with our new venture, Quechua Enterprises, has achieved an exciting milestone on the road to producing the finest fiber available. This year, we sent five almost four hundred pound bales of Royal Fiber to Arequipa, Peru.   Here, it will be transformed into yarn by Inca Tops SAA, one of the largest and most recognized alpaca yarn manufacturers in the world. The resulting product will then be made into textiles by Grupo Inca. We are proud of this fiber’s quality and greatly anticipate the exceptional products it will be generate.   We are also involved in producing textiles here in the United States with hopes of seeing a viable American production run. Currently, we are having blankets and bedspreads made from other bales of Royal Fiber.   The process of creating first-rate fiber starts with producing, over time, the most outstanding genetics. From...

Sharing Knowledge with the Alpaca Industry

snowmass-solutions-videos Snowmass Alpacas is dedicated to sharing the knowledge they’ve gained over thirty years with others in the industry. Their commitment to up and coming breeders can be seen in excellent customer service. In addition, they are dedicated to producing professionally made educational videos to illustrate the principles and to making them available to everyone. A series of videos, Snowmass Solutions, is planned, starting with “Snowmass Solutions Part One: Shearing.” Snowmass Solutions Part One, Shearing This DVD is an in-depth look at the Snowmass Shearing System, which has been developed over the past twenty-five years. Filmed during Snowmass’ shearing season, it includes valuable information that you can use to help improve your program. No matter how many animals you have to shear, it is important to do it correctly in order to maximize the yield of quality fiber and increase efficiency. This way, you and your hired hands spend as little time in this process as...
the-making-of-champions-publications Snowmass Alpacas is aware of the potential alpaca fiber can reach and does everything in their power to share that awareness with others. By writing scholarly publications dedicated to the intricacies of alpaca breeding, Julie Skinner shares her knowledge with the alpaca community at large. These publications are renowned within the industry for their insight and value. Each new edition is eagerly sought out by breeders and alpaca industry experts across the world. The Making of Champions Part I The first in our series addresses fleece types and comparisons between alpacas and other textile-producing fiber. The Making of Champions Part II Part two of our series discusses fleece and fiber in more depth and what we as breeders need to focus on as we advance our herds into a viable textile marketplace. The Making of Champions Part III The third part in our series moves closer to the implications of alpaca fiber in the textile marketplace. We also discuss our shearing, sorting...

Giving Back to the Alpaca Culture

support-to-the-industrySnowmass Alpacas is an avid supporter of others within the industry and consistently encourage those new to the community. Their leadership role is one they take seriously because they are dedicated to making alpacas the source of supremely fine and sought after fiber. Snowmass has donated animals to CONOPA, the entity Jane Wheeler does her groundbreaking camelid research with. Don and Julie’s belief in this academic work has led them to become champions of this effort. Snowmass Alpacas is devoted to being champions of the latest and most cutting edge camelid research. Charitable Donations Snowmass Alpacas is dedicated to giving back. Animals are donated at the annual Snowmass Making of Champions Auction and at other auctions throughout the year. The success of Snowmass Alpacas was gained partially from the help and cooperation of others in the industry over many years. In addition, Snowmass Alpacas singlehandedly funded the Casa Chapi Medical Center for Quechua...
snowmass-casa-chapi-medical-centerGrand Opening of Snowmass Casa Chapi Medical Center by Nik Skinner This November, my sister Heidi and I had the opportunity to participate in the 2012 Quechua Benefit Mission in Perú. Our family, as Snowmass Alpacas, has sponsored the building of a medical clinic at Casa Chapi. This year, the final construction of the clinic was completed, and we were there to attend the grand opening. The first phase of our journey involved long flights, layovers, sleep deprivation, white-knuckle bus rides along cliff-side roads, and a rapid acclimation to 12,000+ feet. It was an intense 24 hours, and we were exhausted when we arrived. As we walked up the drive of Casa Chapi, however, we were quickly rejuvenated as the children came running to greet us with a barrage of joyous laughter and endless hugs — our first taste of the soul medicine to come. The children who live at Casa Chapi are from the highland villages. Most of their families cannot afford to support their basic survival...