Although Thanksgiving is still a couple weeks away, it’s not too early to ski. To the north, Vermont’s Killington Resort opened for the season on October 25, and Vermont’s Okemo Mountain Resort plans to open this Thursday.
A dose of natural snow coupled with aggressive snowmaking allowed Killington to claim the earliest eastern opening date for the 39th season in a row. Currently, three trails are open, with “early season/variable” conditions and a base depth of 0-12 inches. Snowmaking continues as temperatures permit.
Okemo announced today that it intends to open on Thursday, November 11. Trail openings will include Buckhorn, Count Down, Upper World Cup, Drop Off, Sapphire, Route 103, Upper Arrow, and Double Dipper. These trails are recommended for advanced skiers and boarders. Three lifts will be in operation, and reduced lift ticket rates will be in effect for opening day.
Resorts in the Rocky Mountains are also beginning to open. On October 19, Colorado’s Loveland Ski Area became the first resort in the nation to open for the 1999-2000 winter season. Keystone followed up by opening two trails on October 22. Unfortunately, the first fatality of the season occurred at Keystone on November 6 after a man reportedly lost control on a slope and hit his head on a rock.
Further west, resorts in the Lake Tahoe region received a foot of fresh snow and are beginning to project their opening dates. Heavenly Ski Resort will open on Friday, Novemer 12.
Closer to home, West Virginia’s Snowshoe Mountain Resort has set Friday, November 19 as its targeted opening date. The resort has begun snowmaking operations and plans to have several trails ready for opening day.
M. Scott Smith is the founder and Editor of DCSki. Scott loves outdoor activities such as camping, hiking, kayaking, skiing, and mountain biking. He is an avid photographer and writer.
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