Loveland Pass, CO – With cold temperatures settling in over the Colorado Rockies over the weekend, two ski resorts on either side of the Continental Divide began snowmaking operations, vying for the title of the first ski area to open in the state.
Loveland Ski Area got the jump on neighbor Arapahoe Basin by a few hours, turning on the guns at 6 p.m. Friday night to complement natural snow falling with some snow of their own. Loveland’s snowmaking crew will work their way down Catwalk, Mambo and Homerun for Opening Day 2013, on a date yet to be announced but likely to take place in mid-October. These trails form a top-to-bottom run that is over a mile in length and nearly 1,000 vertical feet.
“The surrounding peaks have been white all week and it is great to see our snowmaking team push the snow line a little further down the mountain,” said John Sellers, Loveland’s marketing director. “Every flake that falls from the sky or from one of our snow guns gets us that much closer to opening day. We look forward to turning the lifts for all the skiers and snowboarders that have patiently made it through another long summer.”
At Arapahoe Basin, snowmakers turned on the guns late Friday night, and neighbors awoke Saturday morning to manmade snow blanketing the resort’s intermediate High Noon run.
“Our mountain ops crew fired up the snow guns late (Friday) nigh, and this morning we have new snow blanketing the intermediate High Noon run at Arapahoe Basin,” Adrienne Saia Isaac, the resort’s Marketing and Communications Manager confirmed on Saturday morning. “Break out your puffy and get that gear tuned… the 2013-14 ski and ride season will be here before we know it!”
It typically takes two to three weeks for snowmakers to cover these runs with an 18-inch base, enough to open to the public. Loveland started making snow on October 4 last season and opened on October 23, six days after Arapahoe Basin, which started snowmaking on October 5.