Powderhorn plans to open ski slopes Saturday

Woot woot, Powderhorn opens Saturday.

That’s the word Tuesday from Powderhorn Mountain Resort General Manager Daren Cole.

Powderhorn mountain manager Sam Williams “made the call today and we’re going to open Saturday,” Cole said Tuesday afternoon, a note of relief in his voice. “It’s purely based on snow conditions. We got about a foot out of that storm (Monday) night and the night before, so we’re in pretty good shape.”

Cole said that the final determination on the amount of terrain open won’t be made until Friday but “at least” Lift No. 1 (Take Four) will be running, starting at 9 a.m.

“We’re not sure if we can get anything open off Lift Two, but it looks like we have another big storm coming in Thursday and that should set us up for the weekend,” Cole said.

The opening was delayed from Thursday when early snow conditions simply weren’t sufficient to provide a safe and enjoyable experience, Cole said.

He said both Williams and slope maintenance manager Dave Smith have been out all week in snow grooming machines, getting the mountain ready.

“The two things we look at are customer safety and the overall guest experience,” Cole said. “And remember how fast things change. Last year, we had 22 inches of new snow for our opening.”

The weekend will feature the Opening Day Super Heroes party and the Telemark Skier magazine Suds N’ Skis telemark tour, which includes a band and a showing of the movie “Let’s Go!” at the Sunset Lodge.

Ticket prices will depend on how much terrain is open Saturday. “We’ll have to figure that out,” Cole said.

The news also is welcome to the 250 to 300 people employed each winter by Powderhorn.

Powderhorn waited until late November to start training winter employees, which means there won’t be much delay between their training and the real thing. “It’s more challenging for us that way but it’s better for employee morale,” Cole said.

Information and updates are available on the Powderhorn Mountain Resort website at http://www.powderhorn.com.

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