The flakes are back in Aspen so more ski terrain is opening

Staff report
Skiers at Snowmass negotiate the slopes during Thursday afternoon's snowstorm. Six inches had fallen by 4 p.m. and more snow is forecast.
Anna Stonehouse/The Aspen Times |

The flakes are back in Aspen.

A quick-hitting snowstorm dumped 6 inches of fresh snow at Snowmass and 3 inches at Aspen Mountain and Aspen Highlands Thursday by 4 p.m. just in time to freshen the slopes as the holiday crowds filter in. (Update: the storm left 9 inches of fresh snow at Snowmass, 6 inches at Aspen Highlands and Aspen Mountain, and 3 inches at Buttermilk.) Aspen Skiing Co. officials evaluated the snow conditions Thursday afternoon and determined they could open new terrain at Aspen Mountain, Aspen Highlands and Snowmass today.

At Aspen Mountain, Dipsy Bowl, Summit, Roch Run and Reardon’s will open today.

At Highlands, Prospector, Riverside, Nugget, Golden Barrel and Jerome to the bottom will open. Temerity will open down to the OK Traverse, after a check by the ski patrol. In Highland Bowl, the expectation is to open B Zero, 1 and 2 after control work.

At Snowmass, Upper Hal’s, Dawdler and Upper Velvet Falls will open.

The new snow will allow Buttermilk to open for top-to-bottom skiing Saturday.

Even before the fresh snow, the plan was to open Lift 1A Saturday on Aspen Mountain along with the Spring Pitch and Strawpile trails.

At Snowmass, the Two Creeks lift will open Saturday for uploading and downloading. That will provide access for top-to-bottom skiing on Funnel as well as the Meadows beginner area and the Breathtaker alpine coaster. Gwyn’s High Alpine restaurant also will open Saturday with access via Green Cabin trail and the Alpine Springs chairlift. Skico is offering free parking at the Two Creeks lot.

Snowmass opened the Coney Glade chair and associated terrain Wednesday.

At Aspen Highlands, Cloud 9 Bistro will open Saturday.

Highlands is one of only two members of Colorado Ski Country USA with double-diamond terrain open at this point in the season, according to the ski association’s snow report. Wolf Creek has 13 of 16 double-diamond trails open while Highlands has five of 44. Vail Resorts’ four ski areas in Colorado don’t belong to Colorado Ski Country USA, so they aren’t included in the snow report.

Skico said it would open additional terrain when it can with occasional snow in the forecast over the next five days.

Also on Thursday, Sunlight Mountain Resort outside of Glenwood Springs was able to open for the season.