With high-country temperatures prime for snowmaking help from Mother Nature, the West's ski and snowboard season is upon, as a quartet of ski and snowboard resorts are making noise about opening soon.
Colorado's Continental Divide day-trip Loveland has announced its opening on Friday, Oct. 25, after briefly flirting with first-to-open sweepstakes. New this season will be the resort's link with the Snowstang weekend bus transport. For a $25 round-trip charge skiers and snowboarders hop aboard at Union Station or Denver Federal Center. Service begins Dec. 12. Also in Colorado, Front Range Eldora will drop the ropes on Nov. 1, earliest in 22 years.
Up in the Pacific Northwest, a 10-inch snowfall allowed Timberline Lodge to hold a preview day Oct. 20 on its slopes on Mt. Hood. Two lifts and a couple of runs opened for the day. Lifts closed down after that, and management awaits more snow to reopen permanently. Off the slopes, the U.S. Forest Service recently OK'd a master plan for Timberline that includes more parking, upgraded public transport, and several new lifts.
Mt. Rose Tahoe is slated to drop the ropes for the season on Friday, Oct. 25. Over the summer, the Tahoe-area resort nearest to Reno upgraded snowmaking and added pass-through ticketing gates to improve flow. Plus, the base lodge and parking lots got some work.
And, Wolf Creek in southwestern Colorado celebrates 80 years in the ski business with an anticipated opening date on Oct. 31. Snowmaking is limited so Mother Nature must come through. New at Colorado's favorite powder stash destination is a beginner-intermediate run, a locker room and deck on the ridge-top Raven's Nest restaurant.