Summit County still offers skiing and riding
Ryan Summerlin April 16, 2012
Though Keystone and Copper Mountain have closed the lifts, Arapahoe Basin, Breckenridge and Loveland are still going – even if operations are scaled back. Arapahoe Basin has canceled the race portion of its annual Enduro event, scheduled for Wednesday. Benefiting Martin Dawson, who worked as a ski and snowboard instructor at Arapahoe Basin since the 2008-09 season and is now permanently paralyzed, the event is still on, just in a different format. This year, would-be participants and others who want to join can gather for the apres-ski event, which starts at 4:30 p.m. at the A-frame.”Snow conditions were a big factor,” Arapahoe Basin spokeswoman Kimberly Trembearth said. “The lack of snow that was had this year – it all contributed to that. We want a race that’s going to be really good for our competitors.” Pallavicini Chair, which serves the ski area’s steepest terrain, is still turning, but access is guaranteed only to the West Wall and Grizzly Road, both intermediate-expert runs. With the fresh snow, ski patrol was able to have minor openings on the steeper terrain under the chair, but weather will determine whether that terrain reopens. Arapahoe Basin’s East Wall and Gauthier, the steepest run off Pali Chair, never opened this year. “Any snow you get always helps with keeping things cool and keeps things open a little longer,” Trembearth said, adding that spring events like the Spyder Grind, May concert series, a moonlight dinner event, and the Memorial Day Festival of the Brewpubs remain unchanged. Mountain officials still plan to remain open through the end of May.
Loveland has scaled back its terrain as well, though the mountain remains open until May 6. Currently, Chair 1, Chair 2, Chair 6 and Chair 9 at Loveland Basin are turning. Loveland Valley closed on April 8 for the season, which isn’t unusual and isn’t snow-related, Loveland spokesman John Sellers said. However, Chairs 4 and 8 at Loveland Basin are closed early. “Those lifts serve south-facing slopes where we do not have snowmaking so the warm days have not been kind to that terrain,” Sellers said. “These closures are snow related, but are not atypical. We do not always make it through to closing day with 4 & 8 still running.”Some terrain never opened this season at Loveland. Ten runs never opened, and seven of those were on The Ridge. Tunnel Face (served by Chair 4), Over the Rainbow (served by Chair 1) and East Ropes (Chair 8) were among the 10. Before the slopes close on May 6, spring skiing and live music on weekends are what draw the crowds. The Red Bull Tour Bus comes through on April 22, the Snowboard Colorado Demo Day is slated for April 21 and The Corn Harvest benefit party for the Colorado Avalanche Information Center is on April 28. For more info, check out www.skiloveland.com/events.
Breckenridge Ski Resort intends to honor its plan to remain open two more weekends and reach the end of April. Peak 8 will be the only terrain open to fulfill the final birthday wish of the 50th anniversary season, with exact terrain openings weather-dependent. Check www.breckenridge.com to get the latest updates. Breckenridge was able to open all of its terrain this season, and expects what remains open to be enjoyable spring skiing. “We committed to the two extra weekends as part of our 50 Wishes Program. As of today, we expect to fulfill that final wish for our loyal guests and plan to remain open as announced,” Breckenridge spokeswoman Kristen Petitt-Stewart said.