Slow start to 2016-17 ski season as warm, dry weather persists through next week

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November 10, 2016, 10:02 am

A second Colorado ski area opens today as Loveland finally joins Arapahoe Basin despite the ongoing dry, warm weather and lack of natural snow in Colorado’s high country.

Loveland Ski Area opens for the 2016-17 season on Thursday, Nov. 10, joining A-Basin. Breckenridge and Keystone both indefinitely pushed back their opening days, while Copper Mountain postponed but now has set its opening for Friday, Nov. 18, when Vail is also scheduled to kick off its season.

loveland-snowmaking

Snowmaking at Loveland, which opens for the season today.

“The waiting game is finally over,” said Rob Goodell, director of business operations at Loveland. “The persistent warm weather made things difficult this fall, but our snowmaking team has done an amazing job getting the mountain ready for opening day.”

Loveland Ski Area opened on Oct. 29 last season.

Lift 1 at Loveland will run from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. today and will offer snow riders access to one top-to-bottom run covered from tree-to-tree with an 18 inch base. The trails Catwalk, Mambo and Home Run make up this opening day, run which is over a mile in length and nearly 1,000 vertical feet.

“We already have great coverage on most of the run and just have to put the finishing touches on the lower portion of Home Run,” Goodell added. “While we are opening later than we had hoped, our opening day run will provide our guests with the exceptional early season snow they have come to expect at Loveland. We look forward to another long and snowy winter at Loveland and invite everyone to join us on Thursday to kick off the season.”

Loveland Ski Area will be open seven days a week until closing day in early May. Lift operating hours are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekdays and 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekends and designated holidays. Early season lift tickets are $59 for adults and $27 for children 6-14.

Arapahoe Basin hopes to open another run by the weekend after crews made a significant amount of snow on Ramrod the last few nights. While daytime temperatures in the mountains have been in the 50s and low 60s, nighttime temps have dipped into the 20s and the atmosphere has stayed dry, which is good for snowmaking.

Unseasonably warm, dry weather will persist for another week before a storm heads into the area late next week, according to Opensnow.com: “Colorado will experience dry weather with above average temperatures through the middle of next week. Some snowmaking will occur at night. Our next chance for a storm will be on Thursday, November 17th, ish. This will mark the beginning of a shift in the weather pattern.”

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David O. Williams
David O. Williams is an award-winning freelance reporter based in the Vail Valley of Colorado, writing on health care, immigration, politics, the environment, energy, public lands, outdoor recreation and sports. His work has appeared in 5280 Magazine, American Way Magazine (American Airlines), the Anchorage Daily News (Alaska), Aspen Daily News, the Aspen Times, Beaver Creek Magazine, the Chicago Tribune, the Colorado Independent, Colorado Politics formerly the Colorado Statesman), Colorado Public News, the Colorado Springs Gazette, the Colorado Independent (formerly Colorado Confidential), the Colorado Springs Independent, the Colorado Statesman (now Colorado Politics), the Denver Daily News, the Denver Post, the Durango Herald, the Eagle Valley Enterprise, the Eastside Journal (Bellevue, Washington), ESPN.com, the Glenwood Springs Post-Independent, the Greeley Tribune, the Huffington Post, the King County Journal (Seattle, Washington), KUNC.org (northern Colorado), LA Weekly, the London Daily Mirror, the Montgomery Journal (Maryland), The New York Times, the Parent’s Handbook, Peaks Magazine (now Epic Life), People Magazine, Powder Magazine, the Pueblo Chieftain, PT Magazine, Rocky Mountain Golf Magazine, the Rocky Mountain News, SKI Magazine, Atlantic Media's RouteFifty.com (formerly Government Executive State and Local), Ski Magazine, Ski Area Management, SKIING Magazine, the Summit Daily News, United Hemispheres (United Airlines), Vail/Beaver Creek Magazine, Vail en Español, Vail Valley Magazine, the Vail Daily, the Vail Trail and Westword (Denver). Williams is also the founder, publisher and editor of RealVail.com and RockyMountainPost.com.

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