Ok, so wife got us a 22' x 52" Intex this year. I being overweight, out of shape and unable to afford renting a bobcat undertook the monumental task of leveling by hand. In our case the only viable place to put so large a pool is on one side of our house. I am blessed that we are on a mild slope, except when it came to this. After carefully selecting and marking the location I came to the realization that I would be moving 2" (sod on low side) to 18-20" of dirt on the high side. Using a spade, a digging shovel, a transfer shovel and an old Little Tykes wagon I under took the task. It took a 13 day stretch of digging every night and every weekend day minus 2 days I took off due to to much pain, my wife helped where she could. We ran into a lot of issues because the site we picked was evidently a dumping ground from when they built the subdivision we live in back in 99. I moved well over 1200 lbs of concrete slabs 4"+ thick with re-enforcing wires hanging out all over. Calculations based on the dig put us as having moved over 23tons of soil.
Since our soil is naturally rocky we wanted a layer of sand on top of it. So we had just enough brought in for about .75" over the entire 24' circle. I then compacted all of this by hand, we covered with the Intex tarp and another heavier tarp and we setup the pool.
Needless to say despite my best effort the pool was not level. When we first started filling it there was up to a 3" difference. So I drained it back down to half and jacked the low spots and put pavers under those legs. The pool is within 2" now so thats where its stayed. We have enjoyed the heck out of it.
After I take it down I can begin the re-leveling process. Assuming I can get the dirt level, should I bring sand back? Just re-use what I move off to the side? I see some people put pavers and many other things under their pool, whats the current 'norm'?