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Crested Butte Opens First Phase Of Backside Expansion

Teo2 Expansion area at Crested ButteSkiers and snowboarders will get a glimpse of the future of Crested Butte Mountain Resort as the Colorado ski area drops the ropes on Teocalli 2 Bowl this winter.

While the expansion adds just 40 acres to the mountain’s 1,547-acre skiable portfolio, the new expert-only terrain signals the resort’s inaugural commitment to a 2013 master plan that calls for development of a full-blown back side.

"While this may only be expert terrain now, we are very much focused on providing a family experience back there when the Teocalli Drainage is fully expanded into," said general manager Michael Kraatz. "For now, it is something to get excited about here in Crested Butte: checking out new terrain, on a new aspect of our mountain, in deep powder all while looking out to exceptional views."

Powderhounds can drop into “Teo 2” after riding the High Lift and traversing past the original Teocalli Bowl. They have a choice of taking gullies, trees or an open bowl to the bottom of the bowl, whereupon they must hike out for 25-30 minutes along contours to Paradise Bowl.

The 2013 master plan calls for two lifts and intermediate terrain in the Teocalli drainage, which is the first terrain on the mountain that faces south and/or west. The area lies within the resort’s boundaries as permitted by the U.S. Forest Service, and private tours have caught backcountry powder in the bowl in the past.

“It’s the first step on a master plan, and a low investment to get people back there,” Crested Butte’s Erica Mueller told SnoCountry.com. “There’s quite a bit of intermediate terrain back there.”

Also at the resort in the Gunnison National Forest, summer crews thinned trees in the East River and Teocalli areas to provide more gently graded glades.

The mountain’s tubing hill gets its own lift – a moving carpet right at the base of the Red Lady Express that will run into the evening.

Graphic: Powderhounds will head to back bowl at Crested Butte this winter (Crested Butte) 

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