Storms allow US ski resorts to open early

12th November 2015, by Abi Butcher

Aspen Snowmass will open three lifts on Saturday, 14 November

Aspen Snowmass will open three lifts on Saturday, 14 November

It may be pastures green in the Alps at the moment, but in North America, some ski resorts are planning to open early thanks to recent falls of snow.

Last night, Aspen Snowmass in Colorado announced it was opening some of its lifts this weekend, 14 November, a whole 12 days before its scheduled opening date of 26 November (Thanksgiving weekend). Three lifts, including the Silver Queen Gondola, will open, along with 100 acres of terrain, to make the most of recent snowfall.

Several snow storms in California have brought enough snow for Heavenly and Northstar in Lake Tahoe to open early on Saturday, too — with Heavenly kicking off its 60th anniversary season six days ahead of schedule for the first time since 2009.

“This is the third storm that’s rolled through and we’re in early November so this is fantastic,” said Michael Reitzell, president of the California Ski Industry Association.

“Everyone in California is excited to see rain but the fact that it is also falling in the form of snow in the mountains is fantastic.”

Marmot Basin in Jasper, Canada is also opening on Saturday, with three lifts and five runs in operation. The resort released a gleeful statement: “As of Thursday, 12 November, Jasper has been under a “Snowfall Warning” with the heaviest amounts forecast for Saturday night and Sunday morning. Snow remains in the forecast throughout the week.”

Warm conditions still prevail in the Alps (see this week’s snow report here) but a cold front is expecting to bring snow later next week.

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