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Yes, skiing TODAY October 11
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Updated 8 days ago
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14 days ago

 Keystone, A-Basin and Loveland are all blowing snow, and a significant storm will roll in tomorrow. It’s unclear how much snow the storm will bring, but what is clear is that it will bring about 72 consecutive hours of great snowmaking temps.

12 days ago

https://www.summitdaily.com/news/summit-countys-first-snowstorm-puts-ski-areas-days-away-from-opening/

 

“The biggest surprise from the storm was Keystone Resort’s summit snow stake, which showed about 7 or 8 inches Thursday morning.

“With sustained cold temperatures, a new automated snowmaking system and a little help from Mother Nature, Keystone is getting ready to kick off the season any day now,” Jessie Vandenhouten, communications manager for Vail and Beaver Creek, wrote in an email.”

marzNC - DCSki Supporter
12 days ago

I didn’t realize until recently that Keystone used to always be one of the resort looking to open first in the 1990s.  Apparently when A-Basin put in snowmaking, that changed the game.  Keystone was one of the first in Colorado to put in snowmaking.  Happened about 20 years ago soon after being bought by Vail Resorts, so they were overdo for major upgrades and replacement/addiiton of water pipe.

11 days ago

Actually, Keystone installed snowmaking well before Vail bought the place. I remember skiing opening day as early at October 1992. Vails most immediate impact on Keystone post purchase was uodating lift infrastructure (and halting all early/late season skiing. Back then Keystone’s season mimicked Lovelands — open first and stay open thru the first Sunday in May)..

 

The race to open first was between Loveland and Keystone back then. Both had snowaking. There were years that Keystone would turn on the lights so it could open hours before daylight and hours before Loveland could. Vail stopped the competition afer it bought Keystone in 1997. .

 

Back then  Purina, Keystone’s current owner, would open the Mountain House side of the hill early. Why? Because Mountain House requires snowmaking on 1600 feet of vert VS. 2300 feet on the River Run side.I see no evidence on snowmaking today on the River Run side of Keystone, so I presume Vail is going back to the Purina playbook and plans to open early early this year via Mountain House..

marzNC - DCSki Supporter
11 days ago

bob wrote:

Actually, Keystone installed snowmaking well before Vail bought the place. I remember skiing opening day as early at October 1992. Vails most immediate impact on Keystone post purchase was uodating lift infrastructure (and halting all early/late season skiing. Back then Keystone’s season mimicked Lovelands — open first and stay open thru the first Sunday in May)..

 

The race to open first was between Loveland and Keystone back then. Both had snowaking. There were years that Keystone would turn on the lights so it could open hours before daylight and hours before Loveland could. Vail stopped the competition afer it bought Keystone in 1997. .

 

Back then  Purina, Keystone’s current owner, would open the Mountain House side of the hill early. Why? Because Mountain House requires snowmaking on 1600 feet of vert VS. 2300 feet on the River Run side.I see no evidence on snowing today on the River Run side of Keystone, so I presume Vail is going back to the Purina playbook and plans to open early early this year via Mountain House..

Thanks for the history lesson!  I only started reading about the history of snowmaking a few years ago.  Have read more about snowmaking in the midwest and northeast going back before 2000.  Know much less about Colorado skiing in general, in comparison to Utah and Tahoe.  Headed to Steamboat in Feb, where I skied for a few days around 1995.  Ikon makes a difference. :-)

Clearly opening by Thanksgiving has been a goal for destination resorts for a long time.  This article from 1995 is actually about skiing in Colorado at Aspen/Snowmass.  Mentions the race between Keystone and Loveland.

1995, ARTIFICIAL SNOWMAKING PUTS SKI RESORTS ON A SLIPPERY SLOPE, Chicago Tribune

https://www.chicagotribune.com/news/ct-xpm-1995-01-08-9501080125-story.html 

marzNC - DCSki Supporter
11 days ago

bob wrote:

Actually, Keystone installed snowmaking well before Vail bought the place. I remember skiing opening day as early at October 1992. Vails most immediate impact on Keystone post purchase was uodating lift infrastructure (and halting all early/late season skiing. Back then Keystone’s season mimicked Lovelands — open first and stay open thru the first Sunday in May)..

Maybe that was because Vail also owned A-Basin?  Then kept A-Basin as a perk for VR season passholders and Epic passholders after 2008.  Katz didn’t become CEO until 2006.  So the VR leadership had different priorities from 1996-2005.

11 days ago

marzNC wrote:

bob wrote:

Actually, Keystone installed snowmaking well before Vail bought the place. I remember skiing opening day as early at October 1992. Vails most immediate impact on Keystone post purchase was uodating lift infrastructure (and halting all early/late season skiing. Back then Keystone’s season mimicked Lovelands — open first and stay open thru the first Sunday in May)..

Maybe that was because Vail also owned A-Basin?  Then kept A-Basin as a perk for VR season passholders and Epic passholders after 2008.  Katz didn’t become CEO until 2006.  So the VR leadership had different priorities from 1996-2005.

 That is my presumption. Further I think the reason for Keystone’s trying to open early is that A-Basin isn’t Epic this year.

 

BTW, Vail never operated A-Basin. It was required to sell the place when it also bought Keystone and Breck. Until this year, there was always a cooperaive agreement between Vail and A-Basin..

 

If you’re interested in the history of snowmaking, this is an interesting read:

 

http://newenglandskimuseum.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/06/snowmaking_timeline.pdf

Denis - DCSki Supporter
11 days ago

The New England ski museum is a cool place, well worth a visit if you are in the area.

11 days ago

It starts tomorrow at Keystone:

 

 http://blog.keystoneresort.com/featured/keystone-kickoff-opening-day-2019-20/

 

Sounds like Keystone is prepared to turn on the lights to insure it get’s the “fiist to open” prize

 

“Thanks to our #KeyPeople who helped upgrade our snowmaking system this summer, we’re positioned to be the first ski resort in North America to open for the 19-20 season! Lifts will start turning as early as possible, so stay tuned for details.”

 

https://www.summitdaily.com/news/ski-season-starts-saturday-with-keystone-resort-the-first-to-open-in-north-america/

11 days ago

HA!!

 

A Basin decided to one up Keystone. Lifts started two minutes ago (3:30 MDT) and will run for two hours

http://arapahoebasin.blogspot.com/

 

Way to outsmart the Vail smarty pants.!!!!!

JimK - DCSki Columnist
10 days ago

Happy Columbus Day!

 

Giorgio Daidola, legendary Italian telemark skier.

marzNC - DCSki Supporter
8 days ago

Here’s what was ready at Keystone for 2019 Opening Day:

“For opening day at Keystone, skiers and snowboarders will have access to the River Run Gondola and the Montezuma Express lift to enjoy terrain on Schoolmarm, Silver Spoon, and Last Chance. Skiing and riding access will be offered from the top of Dercum Mountain to the bottom of the Montezuma Express lift. At the end of the ski day, guests will download the River Run Gondola back to the base of the resort.”

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