SnoCast: More Snow Targets the West

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This week, the weather pattern continues to favor the Western U.S. for new snow and the right conditions to kick start ski season. In this week’s SnoCast, we’ll detail where back-to-back storms will deliver fresh snow.

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SnoCast Returns For the 2022-23 Winter Season

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Another winter season is nearly here, and that means we're gearing up for another season of SnoCast. This weekly weather blog takes a deep-dive into the forecast, seeking areas of great ski and ride weather from coast to coast. 

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What's New At Early-Openers Arapahoe Basin, Loveland, Keystone

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With aspens shedding their leaves and snow guns blasting, skiers and riders are focused on the Colorado high country for the definitive sign of winter's arrival: the race to be season's first resort to open.

The two traditional Continental Divide contenders -- Arapahoe Basin and Loveland -- will welcome skiers and riders with replacement lifts. The third competitor, Keystone, will show off a mountain-top restaurant expansion.

At A-Basin, the mid-mountain Lewanee chair gets an upgrade from a 21-year-old fixed grip quad to a high-speed six-seater. The new faster, heavier chair is expected to give some relief to a choke point on front-side and reduce wind delays.

The Lewanee lift, known as "Len", serves much of A-Basin's expert, alpine terrain from East Bowl to top of Beavers cliffs. It also gets hungry skiers and riders more quickly to the Steilhang eatery, and the remodeled and enlarged Il Refugio atop the ridge.

Over at Loveland, a replacement lift on the main mountain and a new base lodge at Loveland Valley are set to go. The 45-year-old Chair 6 at Loveland's mid-mountain will add a seat to become a new fixed-grip triple to deliver more skiers and riders to the blues, greens and terrain parks on the south flank of the 1,800-acre mountain.

The brand-new base lodge at beginner-friendly Loveland Valley expands by 14,000 square feet the space for ski school, rentals, ski patrol, and a bar and restaurant. With more parking put in last season, Loveland Valley has upped its services for beginners and novices as they improve their skills before moving up the hill to the main mountain.

And just off the Divide above Dillon, much of the news from Keystone was what didn't happen this summer. The Vail-owned mountain was set to debut intermediate-friendly Bergman with a new chairlift, but boundary issues with the National Forest put the project on hold. However, Epic Pass holders can get on the mountain one hour earlier than others.

Instead, skiers and riders who frequent the 3,149-acre mountain will have more space to sit and relax with a 6,000-square-foot expansion of the Outpost Restaurant atop North Peak.

 

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Colorado’s Independent Ski Areas Thriving In Shadow Of dueling, Consolidating Resort Giants

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In the shadow of battling behemoths, smaller, independent ski areas are thriving.  Arapahoe Basin, Echo Mountain, Loveland, Monarch, Powderhorn, Ski Granby, Silverton Mountain and Wolf Creek all report record visits, and revenues in the last two seasons.

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SnoCast: Snow and Chilly Temps Kick Off November

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We've gotten a taste of ski season across the U.S. and Canada this week with bursts of cold and snow. These bursts are exactly what the (ski) doctor ordered to get us that much closer to the slopes. Here's how the forecast shapes up this week. 

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SnoCast: A Stormy Western Pattern; Mild Conditions in the East

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 A series of storms will target the West this week with some of the heaviest snow yet of the season in the Sierras, while the East continues to bask in mild temperature. Here are the details in this week’s SnoCast.

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SnoCast: First Big Snow Blankets the Rockies

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This past week featured the first significant snow of the season. Many ski areas across the Rockies received 4”-10”, with locally near a foot and a half, of fresh snow.

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Three Colorado Front Range Ski Areas Poised To Begin Snowmaking

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The arrival of October signals one thing for Colorado’s most passionate skiers and snowboarders: Three Front Range ski areas that vie annually for the distinction of being first to open for the season could begin snowmaking operations very soon.

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Loveland Ski Area Approved For Expansion

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The U.S. Forest Service has greenlit a terrain expansion at Loveland Ski Area.

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Loveland's Plans To Expand Beginner Runs Get Preliminary OK

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For almost 60 years, beginners from Colorado's Front Range have cut their skiing and riding teeth at Loveland Ski Area as one of the closest mountains to the Denver area. And, the Loveland Valley section of the resort -- separated from the main base area with its own parking and lodge -- has been the go-to spot from newbies to take their first turns and get the feel from sliding on skis or snowboards.

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SnoCast: Bursts of Snow Lead Into Thanksgiving Week

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As many ski areas target opening dates, we head into Thanksgiving week with few shots of snow for both the east and west.

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No 'Race To Open' As Colorado Resorts Focus On Safety

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For years, there's been a friendly competition among a trio of high-elevation Colorado resorts to see which Northern American resort opens first. But Covid-19 has cancelled that "race" for this season -- pushing opening dates back.

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Colorado's Uncertain Ski Season Could Have An Unusually Late Start

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In what promises to be a most unusual ski season in Colorado due to COVID-19, it might also be an unusually late kickoff.

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Colorado Front Range Resorts Sort Out Parking, Ticketing

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Most Colorado Front Range skiers and riders typically don't think much about hopping in the car and heading west. However, this season is different and will require a bit more prep before the ride up I-70, U.S. 24 or Highway 119.

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Loveland Gets OK For Backcountry Snowcat Tours

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Front Range favorite Loveland Ski Area has gotten the go-ahead from U.S. Forest Service to deliver skiers and riders into an off-resort bowl previously restricted to backcountry users.

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Loveland Ski Area to Add Nearly 600 Acres of Guided Snowcat Skiing

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The Arapaho National Forest recently approved a ski resort's proposal to provide guided snowcat tours in the beautiful backcountry of Colorado.

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The 10 Best Ski Area Mascots, Ranked

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We’re not here to split hairs about chair placements and tap choices. The selection of a mascot is the single most important choice a ski area can make. Some say a good pick can make or break a resort. To that end, we’ve created a list of the very best ski area mascots and ranked them. If you didn’t make the cut, sorry—this list is extremely selective. Ivy League who?

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Pay To Play: Guided Snowcat Tours Adding To Loveland Offerings

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Loveland Ski Area -- the only resort in the West to include snowcat rides in the day ticket -- plans to fire up pay-per-ride snowcat tours next season to bring skiers and 'boarders deeper into the backcountry.

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Colorado Tries To Get Skiers Out Of Cars And Onto Buses To Tamp Down Traffic

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More than a half-dozen world-class ski resorts are less than 100 miles west of Denver. The trouble is that they're also some of the most popular — and there's really only one road to get to them: the dreaded Interstate 70.

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SnoCountry SnoCast: Colorado Snow Taking The Spotlight

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With at least three resorts open for skiing and riding this weekend, Colorado is poised for a foot of snow from multiple weather systems.

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