Fresh Snow Extends Season for Colorado Resorts

As resorts in North America started wrapping up the 2012/2013 ski season, abundant snowfall has resulted in some resorts extending the season, at least through the weekend of 19-21 April. Among the resorts keeping their lifts and facilities going for the upcoming weekend are Colorado’s Copper Mountain, Vail Mountain and Breckenridge. Aspen Highlands had already committed to staying open through April 21, but now plan to reopen for the weekend of 27-28 April. Winter Park Resort had also committed to a closing date of 21 April and is currently sticking with that, while Loveland Ski Area has plans to remain running until 5 May, and Arapahoe Basin Ski Area is reportedly keeping its options open to extend its season into June.

In honor of its 40th anniversary, Copper Mountain is offering daily lift tickets at $40, with Sierra, Timberline and American Flyer being open on Friday, Saturday and Sunday between 9am and 4pm. Retail, rentals and restaurant facilities will be open at Center Village. Noting that “Mother Nature is a fickle business partner”, president and general manager of Copper Mountain Resort Gary Rodgers went on to say that the extended season was a good way of thanking loyal guests for celebrating the resorts 40th anniversary. In addition to receiving more than a foot of snow since Copper Mountain’s original closing day, snow is forecast for Wednesday and Thursday, with the possibility of more during the weekend.

Vail Mountain has received up to two feet of snow since Monday, with the irony of a snowstorm after closing day not being lost on skiers who had enjoyed what was meant to be the final weekend of Vail’s 50th anniversary season. With steady snow falling during an employee ski day on Monday, Vail management took the decision to extend its season, something which it apparently hasn’t done since the 1986-87 season. While it may seem that it’s an easy decision to stay open, it is quite a challenge for the resort’s management to gather and reemploy staff and care for other logistics. But when it means more time on the snow, no challenge is too great to overcome, and skiers no doubt understand that services offered will be limited to the basics. If the comments and ‘likes’ on Vail’s Facebook page is anything to go by, the resort is in for an exciting and busy weekend as skiers and snowboarders head back for the slopes.