Tips for the Trails: Opening Day

Olivia Janicek

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You’ve probably been waiting. Your skis sitting idly in the garage, thirsty for the taste of fresh powder on their tips. Your boots collecting dust in the closet, peeling away from months of hibernation. It’s finally arrived, the infamous ski season. As you’re probably aware of, Colorado is ski town mecca, with mountains of all levels scattered throughout the west. But when do those hills, glorious gifts waiting to be unwrapped, going to open? And when they do, does the snow level make the trip up I-70 even worth it? Unfortunately, warm weather and scarce snowflakes have plagued the hills, but that doesn’t mean skiing is off the table completely.
Vail, CO– Nov. 18th- While there’s some snow in the forecast, some rain is sadly on its way as well. The chilly droplets will ice the ski runs and conditions won’t be ideal. However, the rain doesn’t hit until Monday next week. So for this mountain, the early bird will certainly get the worm.
Eldora Mountain– POSTPONED, TBD- Originally, Eldora was prepped for opening on November 18th, like plenty of other resorts. Still, the weather did not agree. As of right now, the resort is waiting out the celebrated opening weekend and with some snow in next week’s forecast, we can assume it’ll probably happen sometime then. All in all, the location positive resort is on hold.
Steamboat– Nov. 23rd- Similar to Vail, Steamboat’s expected to get a nice dumping of snow before the weekend. Yet, opening day probably won’t be so lucky. A drizzle of rain is expected follow by more snow. We can only hope that slick ice will be covered up and forgotten by late next week.
Winter Park– Nov. 23rd- Winter Park, Steamboat’s younger sister, has a good week ahead of itself. After postponing opening day to the 23rd, the odds have been in the resort’s favor. According to the forecast, only snow is to come. The only question is, regarding Winter Park’s seven territories is, which territories will be open? Everyone’s wishing that they won’t be confined to the bunny hill this early winter, yet nothing is promised.
Keystone– Now open! November 18th- Unlike other resorts, Keystone opened right on time. Yet is this a blessing or a curse? Currently, only two trails are open and the conditions are not ideal. There’s a thin layer of powder over roughly 18in of base. Luckily, the forecast is in Keystone’s favor. Monday and Tuesday are expected to bring sparkling snowflakes that’ll the delight the entire resort.
Loveland– Now open!- Loveland, similar to Keystone, isn’t feeling too perfect right now. Though it’s open and happy to welcome all, its mountain is not. Still, it’s a little bit better off than Keystone with 7” of snow in the last 24 hours! The forecast claims that snowfall will continue, with more wondrous flakes expected on Monday and Tuesday.
Aspen Snowmass– November 24th- It seems as though Aspen will be a late bloomer this year. As it struggles to gain snowfall, everyone has their fingers crossed. Hopefully, luck will pay off. Snow (and possibly a mix of rain) is expected next week, yet for now, opening dayers are going to have to be patient.
FINAL TIPS FOR THE TRAILS: If you’re planning on heading up to any resort during the first part of the season, be sure to check your mountain’s forecast. If it looks like skiing going to be a little rough and icy, then save your ticket money for another day.There’s nothing to fun about sliding down a crowded, green level trail, and with an entire season left, it’s better not to waste it. However, if you’re still in the mountains and can’t hit the ski hills, don’t fret! Tucked away throughout the ski village and surrounding ski towns are plenty of fun activities. Take a skate on the ice rink in town with warm hot chocolate tingling in your fingertips. Or go sledding at the local hill with laughter trembling in your chest. I promise you, you can make a mountain trip worth it without a ski trail rolling beneath your feet.

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