FIRST US SKI RESORT IN EAST OPENS
21st October 2019 | James Cove, PlanetSKI Editor
Last modified on November 13th, 2019
Killington kicked off on Sunday after a bumper start to the season over in the west as two more resorts open in Colorado this weekend.
The resort has had little natural snow, but the cold temperatures have allowed the cannons to go on.
“WE’RE OPENING TOMORROW (11/3/19), and the stoke is real!” said the resort on Saturday.
“Day 1 is reserved for Season Pass, Express Card, Beast 365 and Ikon Pass holders. The K-1 Express Gondola and North Ridge Quad will open at 11:00 a.m tomorrow and we’ll open to the general public Monday, November 4 at 9:00 a.m.”
“Snowshed Lift will spin at 10:00 a.m. tomorrow for the final day of downhill mountain biking.”
And here’s what it looked like on opening day…
Elsewhere in the USA resorts in Colorado are opening parts of their ski areas on a seemingly daily basis.
Winter Park opened on Saturday – it’s earliest opening in 80 years.
Here are the latest images and news as we have been posting over the autumn.
Now we should at this stage say that although all the pictures and videos look great it is early days.
A warm spell and snow drought might follow.
However it is a fabulous start to the winter and if you are thinking of heading to the USA then this season might be the one to do it.
Here at PlanetSKI we are taking a trip to Park City in Utah in January and will be skiing all the local resorts plus a few others in the state.
If time allows then we’re heading to Colorado too.
We’ve already decided it is worth making the commitment to head to the USA in 2020 as it looks like it could be rather special.
“We’re OPENING EARLY! The snow is here and conditions are great, so we’re kicking off the 19/20 ski season this Saturday, Nov. 2! The Arrow starts spinning at 8:30am,” said the resort.
The runs open are Parkway, Sorensen and its terrain park, Porcupine and Lower Village Way.
Aspen has received 90 cm in October with 62cm of it coming in the past week.
There is talk of the resort opening early, but no decision has been taken by the resort authorities.
“It’s definitely on our minds but too early to pin down a day,” said resort spokesman, Jeff Hanle. “I think we have 10 days to two weeks” before a decision is made.
Snow records are breaking across Colorado.
Breckenridge has seen 1.22m, topping the previous record of 1.16m set in 2006.
At Keystone the resorts has seen 1.1m of snow so far this month, breaking its 1.11m record from the same year.
Keystone had enough early season snow to open October 12th earlier than it had in decades.
Half of its total snow for October – 56cms – fell in the past week.
Some of the state’s ski resorts are on course to for their highest October natural snowfall.
Keystone, which opened on 12th October, has had a metre already.
It has managed to open its North Peak for top-to-bottom skiing weeks earlier than is usual.
— Keystone Resort (@KeystoneMtn) October 27, 2019
Breckenridge, which is not due to open until 8th November has had more than a metre and might start its season early.
“It’s just incredible that it looks like mid-winter conditions, Keystone and Breckenridge spokeswoman Sara Lococo told The Denver Post.
“The weather has been great, and the temperatures have been great, so our snowmakers have been out in full force.”
Monarch Mountain is planning its earliest opening since 1969, running three lifts serving 20 trails on Fridays to Sundays from this Friday, 1st November.
It had originally planned to get its season underway on 22nd November but the ski area, which has no snowmaking, has had more than 50cm of natural snow this month.
Wolf Creek is also set to open.
Loveland, which opened less than a week ago has had a top up, as has Arapahoe Basin, which opened some of its slopes on 11th October.
A-Basin is hoping top-to-bottom skiing can get under way this weekend.
A-Basin, along with other resorts in Colorado including Aspen, Steamboat, Eldora and Copper, is on the IKON PASS.
Eldora is another Colorado resort to announce it’s opening earlier than planned – it will kick off its season this Friday 1st November.
Expect more to follow.
Steamboat Resort is not due to open until 23rd November but it has had a massive 134cm of snow so far – a record for October.
Copper Mountain will start up for the winter on 8th November.
It’s already covered in a blanket of white.
Chet’s Dream started spinning at 9:00am on Friday and offers access to one full top-to-bottom run covered from tree-to-tree with an 18 inch base.
The trails Catwalk, Mambo and Home Run made up this Opening Day run which is over a mile in length and nearly 1,000 vertical feet.
“The conditions were firing,” said one rider.
“It was perfect. Loveland is just a fun environment where I go to get that old school feeling of being a kid again, to not focus as much on performance snowboarding. It brings you back to your roots.”
Loveland Ski Area opened on 20th October last season.
Loveland’s snowmakers will continue to make snow on Home Run and around the base of Chet’s Dream this week before moving on to opening additional terrain.
Loveland Ski Area will be open seven days a week until Closing Day in early May.
But who needs lifts to run anyway?
Here is the latest image we have from Jackson Hole in Wyoming after some riders hiked up to make their first turns of winter after 40cm fell.
Jackson Hole is a special favourite of ours at PlanetSKI and we passed through a few years back on one of our legendary ski road trips:
Jackson is now on the IKON Pass.
Here is what the Jackson web cams show us:
There has been 35cm of fresh snow in Utah.
The resorts may not have opened, but that didn’t stop people putting on skins and hiking up.
Mount Rose Ski in Tahoe, California, also opened for skiers and snowboarders on Friday, October 25th.
However it was a one-off and the ski area has now closed.
“Thank you to everyone who was at the Timberline pre-season opener today,” said the resort.
“The ski area is now closed until further notice. Weather and snow conditions will be evaluated daily with the goal of reopening and the seeing everyone soon. Pray for snow!”
The resort’s general manager Jan Sekerak told CBC News the resort is making the most of the prolonged period of cold weather and using the colder temperatures to make snow.
“Man made snow is now alpha and omega of skiing in this area,” he said to the TV network.
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