Snowmass gondola runs; powder awaits |

Snowmass gondola runs; powder awaits

A skier hits 10 inches of fresh powder on Midnight Wednesday morning on Aspen Mountain, where another 9 inches has fallen in the past 24 hours. (Janet Urquhart/The Aspen Times)

SNOWMASS ” The Elk Camp Gondola at Snowmass will be open Thursday and Friday after all.

The Aspen Skiing Co. had announced plans to close the new gondola Wednesday afternoon and keep it shut down through Friday to splice the wire cable, but the maintenance will be delayed, possibly through the end of the season.

“Poma lift engineers (the manufacturer) have figured out a way to maintain the tension on the rope, allowing the delay of the closure,” said Steve Sewell, Snowmass mountain manager, in a press release. “Again, we stress this is not a safety issue and we are hoping to delay the splice until the summer when originally planned.”

The gondola at Snowmass made its debut this season. It’s not uncommon for a new cable to stretch and require splicing in its first year of operation, according to Sewell.

The Elk Camp Gondola will help skiers and boarders reach the 6 inches of new snow the company reported at Snowmass Thursday morning. Snowmass has picked up 16 inches over the past 48 hours.

At Aspen Mountain, 9 inches of fresh stuff has fallen in the past 24 hours, and 19 inches over the past 48 hours. Aspen Highlands reported 5 new inches Thursday morning, and 15 inches over the past 48 hours, while Buttermilk has picked up 4 inches since Wednesday morning and a foot over the past 48 hours.

Sunlight Mountain Resort outside Glenwood Springs reported 5 inches of new snow Thursday morning and 13 inches over the past 48 hours.

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