Summer Snowmaking Upgrades Allow Vail Mountain to Guarantee Nov 15th, 2019 Opening

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Snowmaking at Vail.

Vail Resorts announced Monday that, thanks to upcoming work this summer on new snowmaking equipment, Vail Mountain, CO will for sure be opening on Nov. 15, 2019. According to a release from the company, Vail’s snowmaking upgrades and expansion will ensure a pre-Thanksgiving Opening Day each year. Nearly 200 acres of new and enhanced snowmaking terrain will provide guests with earlier access to higher-elevation terrain, top-to-bottom skiing/ snowboarding, access from two base areas and improved early-season ski school terrain, reports Vail Daily.

Vail owned Beaver Creek, CO will also expand snowmaking capabilities at Red Buffalo Park, providing more reliable early-season terrain in a key beginner area of the upper mountain. The resort will aim to offer more than 3,300 vertical feet of top-to-bottom skiing/snowboarding on Opening Day each year. Beaver Creek will be open Nov. 27 to April 12, 2020.

The US Forest Service in late March approved the company’s proposal for expanded snowmaking at Vail and Beaver Creek. When that multi-year project is complete, snowmaking will be available on roughly 25% of the mountain’s skiable terrain.

The first phase of the Vail Mountain snowmaking project will include 192 acres of terrain including Swingsville Ridge, Swingsville, Meadows, and Ramshorn, in the mid-Vail area of the mountain; Bear Tree, Cold Feet, a portion of upper Lion’s Way and Lodgepole in the area of Avanti Express Lift (Chair 2); Coyote Crossing, Practice Parkway and Ledges in the Eagles Nest area; and beginner enhancements in the Gopher Hill Lift (Chair 12) area.

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Vail Mountain trail map

Vail and Beaver Creek aren’t Vail Resorts’ ski areas with big summer plans for the coming season. According to the company, improvements are underway that will allow Epic Pass holders to ski one of the company’s resorts from October into late May or June.

According to a release, Keystone’s energy-efficient, automated snowmaking system improvements should allow it to open in October, as early as conditions allow. By its traditional opening day in November, Keystone will offer top-to-bottom skiing and snowboarding, doubling the terrain access that has typically been open at that time. Keystone plans to be open from October to April 12, 2020.

Breckenridge recently announced plans to regularly extend winter seasons through Memorial Day. Thanks to a cool, wet season, Breck’s Spring Finale was able to extend past Memorial Day for two additional weekends into June. The resort’s final weekend of skiing and snowboarding for the 2018-19 season will take place this weekend, June 8-9.

Breckenridge will open for the 2019-20 winter season Nov. 8 and will be open through May 25, 2020, conditions permitting.

Crested Butte Mountain Resort will replace the Teocalli Lift this summer, increasing uphill capacity, adding secondary egress to the base area and quick access to beginner and intermediate terrain. The fixed-grip quad chairlift will increase uphill capacity by 50 percent. Crested Butte will be open Nov, 27 to April 12, 2020.

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