Breckenridge Ski Resort, Vail Mountain to open Friday |

Breckenridge Ski Resort, Vail Mountain to open Friday

Each mountain will open with 2 trails

John LaConte
Vail Daily
The base of Peak 8 at Breckenridge Ski Resort is pictured Wednesday, Nov. 10. The mountain is scheduled to open for the season Friday, Nov. 12.
Spence Linard/Breckenridge Ski Resort

Editor’s note: This story has been updated with additional opening day details.

Breckenridge Ski Resort, which is scheduled to open Friday, Nov. 12, posted its opening day details on social media Wednesday, Nov. 10.

The ski area, which is the third to open in Summit County, will offer about 50 acres of terrain on Peak 8 with access to 4 O’Clock and Springmeier trails. The terrain will be served by the Colorado SuperChair and 5-Chair, which will open at 8:30 a.m. Friday.

Access to Peak 8 is served by the BreckConnect Gondola, which will begin running for the season at 8 a.m. Friday. Opening day festivities include free waffles and music by DJ Cat.

Just over Vail Pass in Eagle County, Vail Mountain Chief Operating Officer Beth Howard said Wednesday that Vail also intends to open Friday as scheduled despite less-than-ideal snowmaking conditions over the past few weeks.

Vail Mountain has enjoyed only short windows of snowmaking during the run-up to the 2021-22 season, Howard said at the State of the Valley event in Edwards.

But as Howard was speaking, Vail Mountain was taking advantage of one of the few opportunities there has been for daytime snowmaking prior to Friday’s long-planned opening.

Cold temperatures and snowy skies blanketed the area Wednesday, and in his Wednesday morning report, Colorado ski conditions forecaster Joel Gratz, founding meteorologist of Open Snow, said Thursday night, Nov. 11, could bring “narrow bands of intense snow, and along with a favorable wind direction from the west-northwest and the northwest, mountains near and north of I-70 have a chance to see 2-6 inches of snow.”

Hedging his bet, however, Gratz added “there’s also a chance that (the storm) stays just a bit farther to the north and hits Copper and Summit County and Winter Park and the continental divide north of I-70 and just misses Vail and Beaver Creek and Cooper and Aspen.”

Howard said regardless of the weather, Vail’s plan is to open with two runs, Ramshorn and Swingsville, accessed via Chair 4, offering more than 70 acres of terrain.

To get to Chair 4, skiers and snowboarders will have to ride 2,000 vertical feet up the mountain via Gondola One and will also have to download the gondola to depart Vail Mountain, Howard said.

“As we get cold temps, we’ll start to connect the dots and get snowy egress down to our villages,“ Howard said. ”The mountain can change pretty quickly, and that’s our goal.“

Lifts will be loaded to full capacity, Howard said.

“So we won’t have those long lift lines and ghost lanes in between,” Howard said.

Face masks will not be required on lifts, but they will be required at indoor facilities. Guests will be allowed to enter large, cafeteria-style dining facilities without a reservation to warm up and use the bathroom, but to dine, “we will ask for not only a reservation, but verification that you’ve been vaccinated,” Howard said. “And then you can come in and enjoy the restaurant as you always have.”

For smaller table service dining, vaccination proof will not be required.

On opening day at Breckenridge, on-mountain dining will be open at Ski Hill Grill, TBar, Vista Haus and Sevens. Reservations can be made through the Time to Dine platform on the EpicMix app.

“We’re excited to get open again in a different version of this pandemic and look forward to seeing you out on (the) mountain again,” Howard said. “Thanks to all of you for your support, patience and community leadership and collaboration as we go through this marathon of the COVID era.”

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