Ajax, S’mass runs tovary on opening day | AspenTimes.com
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Ajax, S’mass runs tovary on opening day

Jeremy Heiman

The early bird won’t get the only worm, or the only face shots, this weekend on Aspen Mountain and Snowmass.

Being in the right place at the right time is all it will take to get a set of first tracks. Saturday is the official opening day for the two areas, and various runs and sections will be opened and closed during the day, as ski patrol officials see fit.

“People should be able to get some bonus runs on Saturday,” said Rose Abello, spokesperson for the Aspen Skiing Company.

At Snowmass, all the runs on the Big Burn from Sneaky’s to Timberline will be open, Abello said. A late opening of Whispering Jesse can be expected over the weekend. But ski patrollers have told Abello the Powerline Glades are “really funky,” she said.

On Sam’s Knob, Upper Banzai and Coney Glade will be open. Also, Ute Chute, Zugspitze, Moonshine, Wildcat, Fast Draw and Slot may open periodically through the weekend based on conditions.

Abello said the majority of the runs at the top of Ajax will be open, with the exception of Summit and the Walsh’s area. The Silver Queen Gondola will be the way to get there, and other lifts running will include Ajax Express, FIS and Ruthie’s.

On the Ruthie’s side, the World Cup race course will be open to the base of Ruthie’s chair, including Roch Run and Reardon’s Run. Skiers may also enjoy temporary openings of Sunset, Red’s and Aztec.

The Skico is reporting record or near-record snow accumulation on both mountains. As of midday Wednesday, Aspen Mountain had received 61 inches of snow at the top. Record total snowfall for the entire month of November on Ajax is 68 inches, according to a Skico release.

November’s total snowfall for Snowmass has been 70 inches so far, equaling the previous record amount for the entire month of November. More snow is predicted for the remainder of the week.

For adults without season passes, lift tickets will be $39 per day. Children, ages 7-12, are $30, and kids 6 and under are free. Tickets are valid and interchangeable on both mountains. Both mountains will be open from 9 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. daily. Parking at Snowmass is free.


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