The unseasonably warm temperatures have forced two Colorado resorts to push back their opening days. Copper Mountain has moved their opening date to Friday, Nov. 7 and Keystone's opening day will be "as soon as snow conditions allow." Here are the official announcements from the two resorts:
COPPER MOUNTAIN, Colo. — October 28, 2014 — Copper Mountain strives to provide the highest quality experience for guests all year long. With this in mind, Copper has made the difficult decision to delay Opening Day for the 2014/15 winter season from Friday, Oct. 31 to Friday, Nov. 7.
Unusually warm temperatures have limited snow making production causing the inability to create a top-to-bottom skiing and riding experience for our planned opening day. With the forecast looking favorable, Copper Mountain’s Resort Leadership is confident the snow making team can create a quality surface for opening on Friday, Nov. 7. Top-to-bottom skiing will be open on Ptarmigan via Excelerator lift as well as on Rhapsody and Main Vein via American Eagle lift. Easy Rider will also be open for beginner terrain
“Mother Nature is starting to release her hold on winter and we will have a great start to the 2014/15 season,” said Gary Rodgers, President and General Manager of Copper Mountain. “Delaying Opening Day was a hard decision to make, but the quality of our snow surface and the experiences of our guests are most important.”
Guests can follow Copper Mountain on Facebook, Twitter and at CopperColorado.com for updates on mountain conditions, opening day information and more. Guests are encouraged to call 866-841-2481 with additional questions concerning lift tickets or lodging.
Copper will once again introduce the full roster of Olympic medalists and World Champion alpine skiers while hosting the First Tracks Alpine Team Naming presented by Nature Valley on Saturday, Nov. 8. Athletes expected to attend include Mikaela Shiffrin, Julia Mancuso, Ted Ligety, Bode Miller and Lindsey Vonn. This full day pep-rally allows fans a chance to watch the U.S. Alpine Ski Team train, participate in a fan-led parade, cheer on and send off their favorite athletes on the Audi FIS Alpine World Cup ski season.
Lock in your snow days for the 2014/15 winter season with the Copper Season Pass and Copper 4-Pack, on sale now. Visit CopperColorado.com for more information.
Visit CopperColorado.com for lodging steals, event details and more. Stay in the loop all year long at www.facebook.com/CopperMtn or @CopperMtn on Twitter and Instagram.
Unfortunately the popular saying is what we’re living today at Keystone with the announcement that Opening Day for the 2014/15 season, originally scheduled for this Friday, Oct 31, will be delayed due to the unseasonably warm weather the region has experienced over the past two weeks. Although snowmaking operations began on Oct 12, our expert team and superior snowmaking infrastructure has been no match for the unusual weather pattern we’ve seen most recently.
The good news is that colder weather has returned. We fired up the guns again on Monday, and also saw some natural snowfall. More seasonable temperatures, particularly during the overnight hours, are forecasted for the week ahead. Rest assured that our snowmaking crews will continue to work whenever possible, utilizing the updated pipe and pumping station and new high efficiency guns we installed this summer as we prepare the best early season ski and ride conditions for our loyal guests.
Our goal is, as always, to provide the best experience possible, and to do so just as soon as possible. In our press release today Keystone President & COO John Buhler said, “We’re all eager to get in those first turns, but we won’t sacrifice quality. It’s a long season and we want to make sure we’re providing the best snow conditions possible from day one.”
As we continue our on-hill operations ahead of a new Opening Day, this page will be updated daily with forecasts, on-mountain progress and any additional information we think may be helpful for you, our guests. You may also visit the Keystone Facebook & Twitter for updates. If you have any additional questions please email Info@Keystoneresort.com
If you have booked lodging with us or have any questions regarding lodging please call (888) 749-6781
We look forward to announcing a new Opening Day just as soon as possible
When will you be opening?
We are just as excited as you to begin our season. The resort plans to reschedule opening day as soon as snow conditions allow. An announcement will be made as soon as possible regarding a new date. Check this page for updates including the latest forecast and mountain operations update.
Why are you not opening on Friday?
Due to unseasonably warm weather experienced throughout the region the last two weeks, only a tenth of our planned snowmaking operations were able to be completed. Snowmaking efforts are a coordinated, strategic and scientific operation. Our snowmaking team has been and continues to be available around the clock. They are constantly monitoring minute-by-minute weather and will have the guns cranking whenever weather conditions allow. While we did begin snowmaking operations in early October, warmer temperatures as of late diminished any previous efforts.
Why did you delay your opening?
We’re dedicated to providing our guests with the best conditions possible and weren’t able to do that on our scheduled opening date. We don’t want to sacrifice quality for speed. Our original opening date of Friday, Oct. 31 was one of the earliest scheduled resort openings for all of Colorado. Because of the unusually warm weather we recently experienced, snowmaking efforts were severely hindered. While we did begin snowmaking operations in early October, warmer temperatures as of late diminished any previous efforts.
Why was an announcement regarding opening day not made sooner?
Our sophisticated snowmaking system and expert team allows us to be incredibly nimble when the appropriate weather conditions materialize. In an effort to honor our published opening date, we wanted to do everything we could to try to meet that date, while still providing the best early season snow conditions. More seasonable weather was predicted to move into the region on Sunday, but we didn’t get the round-the-clock temperatures that we were hoping for. We made an announcement as soon as it was confirmed there would be no feasible way for us to provide a quality product for Oct. 31.
Why can’t you open with limited terrain?
While snowmaking operations did begin earlier this month and we do have some snow on the ground – recent record-setting high temperatures throughout Colorado hampered any previous snowmaking efforts. Keystone did not wish to compromise the quality of available terrain by opening Friday.
Does the delayed opening/warm October/etc. mean that it will be a bad snow year?
Not at all; we don’t see a correlation between October/early season conditions and future snowfall or season-long snow conditions. We’ve had years with bountiful early snow but drought later in the season, and others where winter weather is a little slow to arrive, but it ends up being a banner year.