Copper, CO April 28, 2024


Well-known member
Been an up and down spring, with short stretches (3-5 days each it seems) of warm and cool/storms. I have been too busy to post on some of it (maybe get around to it later?).

But have a short moment to post on yesterday. Multi-day storm cycle that should have hit ABasin more, but instead hit Copper much better so I went there instead (ABasin got maybe half as much each day). Copper Sunday report was 10" new (4" overnight), and 17" over 3 days. Todays report had another 5" on it, though it will warm up for a couple days before the next moisture comes back in.

Anyway. Surfaces basically fully softened by new snow for most of the vertical, a touch of underlying hardness due to less new snow lower down and eventually slight bits of warm softening on the bottom ~500-800 verts on Sunday.

28F first thing and mostly cloudy all day with a couple of short patches of sun. Perhaps 35F at the base by 3p when I quit.

A dozen lifts running. back side and left and right edges closed. Makes no sense that they didn't allow skiing down Alpine lift until the Bee Traverse though...

With good terrain much more limited I found lots of untracked or lightly tracked in places like Spaulding Bowl, 17 Glade, Gold Digger-ish area off Sierra. This track missed my first two runs though... About 23K of vertical for the day.
Copper Apr28.JPG

Snow squalls most of the day.

A bit wind affected on Storm King

Halleijulah Bowl shows that much of the areas was not wind affected

If you can't get a cell signal on the front side of Copper, you are doing it wrong...

Rare peak of sun. Note the full parking lots. Yet no more than 5-10 chair waits everywhere - except Sierra lift for unknown reasons (5-10min wait).

Not so much sun mixed in as well...

Short pitch, but very fun turns in Spaulding Bowl...

Patroller doing ski cutting in Spaulding bowl on my 3rd lap there.

Packed Sierra lift. Steep and soft, but other trails had nice sections of untouched 10"+ of powder if you know where to go...

Calling it a day at 3p and band about to start...

15minutes later and the sun is almost fully out for the first time of the day...

Check that... 15minutes after the sunshine it is nuking... and stayed that way for a while
Does Copper always stay open as long as there's sufficient cover?
Historically no. Copper usually closes the 3rd or 4th weekend in April. They have had a good snow year this year (including 60" in April) and announced they will run as long as snow allows; But on a limited 4 lift footprint serving ~550 acres. Probably going to be nearly deserted on weekdays I suspect...
Nice report! I had a memorable April visit to Copper with my son in 2009. Believe we were there the 17th and 18th of the month and it was also during Sunsation. It snowed 2-3' of good quality snow during our one week visit to Summit County and I70 was closed for part of the time, so we had a bit of a country-club experience at Copper. This photo was taken that visit around Enchanted Forest.
This is Summit County's peak season relative to other ski regions:
1) Snowfall does not tail off in April like most other regions.
2) Excellent snow preservation
3) Crowds and traffic issues generally end.
Another 6"-12" is forecast for tonight for the Mtns as well. With warming up to seasonable temps next week, but with unsettled weather/daily storminess likely next week. They certainly could move a fair bit higher up their internal rankings. I'm sure Tony has chopped off some of the early season in his records though...
I'm sure Tony has chopped off some of the early season in his records though...
Yes, 25 inches before November 1. Since Copper was 5% open on December 1, there is no question that October snowfall was irrelevant in 2023-24. That applies everywhere this season due to the widespread dry November. Alta was tops in North America snowfall at 606 inches, excluding 22 in October.

While Copper has not been open in May much before, having just American Flyer and 7% of terrain open isn't going to lure many people from Breck (43% open including Imperial) or A-Basin. Why would they not run the higher lifts (Excelerator and Storm King) directly above American Flyer?

Copper's snow history page has not been updated yet to include any of 2023-24. They are very slow to do this and often I get their info from CAIC before that page is updated. Note there is no May snowfall on that page even though there is October. I had Copper at 101% of normal as of April 13. No question the past month has been snowy in the Front Range, not that uncommon from A-Basin's long term data.
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having just American Flyer and 7% of terrain open isn't going to lure many people
American Eagle is the lift that is open. Not that that makes much difference... Even Winter Park would be a better choice for weekdays it would seem.

I believe they said that on weekends they plan to also run Super B, Storm King and Excelerator lifts and be at ~500+ acres. IMHO if they are going to only run one lift on weekdays it should be the Super B.