Skiers and riders share new season resolutions at Loveland Ski Area’s opening day
LOVELAND — Loveland Ski Area wasn’t the first to open in Colorado, but boy were the opening day conditions prime on Friday.
Dozens of skiers and snowboarders from Summit County and the Front Range braved Friday morning’s frigid temperatures to ski and ride a pristine, groomed run off the Chet’s Dream high-speed quad. Once the sunrise crested the snow-filled mountains to the east of Loveland, hundreds more joined the first-chair chasers.
Some had skied opening days at Arapahoe Basin Ski Area on Oct. 11 and Keystone Resort on Oct. 12. Two weeks after those two Continental Divide neighbors battled to win the race to open, Loveland starting spinning its lifts with a tally of more than 30 inches of snowfall this month.
One of the snowboarders first in line at Loveland was Never Summer pro snowboarder Dylan Alito, of Evergreen, who said the conditions were the best of an early opening day at any of the Continental Divide ski areas in at least five years.
“The conditions were firing,” Alito said. “It was perfect. Loveland is just a fun environment where I go to get that old school feeling of being a kid again, to not focus as much on performance snowboarding. It brings you back to your roots.”
How did Loveland’s opening days compare to A-Basin and Keystone’s openers earlier this month?
“This was by far the best one,” Alito said.
For many other skiers and snowboarders at Loveland on Friday, this was their first day of the season. As they began a new ski and shred year, many of them shared their season’s resolutions.
For some, like beginner Ryan Julian, of Roxboro Park, the goal for a new year is simple: go toe-side on his snowboard. Friday being his 10th time riding, he thinks he’s almost there.
For others, like longtime skier Phil Kopp, of Frisco, he’s ready to ski a minimum of 130 days this season.
“Last year, I got 160,” Kopp said.
How did the opening day skiing rank, on a scale of 0 to 10, for the longtime Summit County skier Kopp?
“Realizing there’d be limited terrain: 10,” Kopp said.
Then there were the out-of-state skiers and snowboarders who descended on Loveland while visiting Denver, like Daniel Naylor, of Roanoke, Virginia, originally from England. Naylor said his resolution is to do something simple, like ride a rail in the terrain park.
Others have more grand resolutions, like Steve Magana, of Westminster.
“To go heli-boarding in Silverton,” Magana. “I’d like to go to Alaska. Last year was my first time leaving the United States to travel for skiing. I just want to go more places. I think traveling is the main mission — new places, new terrain on the brain.”
Jake Williams, of Denver, echoed the most popular resolution on the day.
“Shred more pow, more pillows,” Williams said. “Thrash harder than anyone out, brah!”
Williams’ riding buddy, Chris Chance, said his resolution is to “to be the most radical-est bro you’ve ever seen out there in your entire life.”
Chance and Williams agreed Loveland’s opening day conditions rated an 11 on a scale of 1-10.
Another snowboarder who exuded her sense of humor on opening day, Jess George, of Denver, shared her resolution, one we all could live by this new ski and snowboard season.
“Make all the friends,” George said.
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