A-Basin bests Keystone Resort with surprise opening day.

Not to be outdone by neighboring Keystone Resort, which just hours ago released news of their opening day on Oct.12, 2019, Arapahoe Basin Ski Area followed up with a surprise announcement that it would start spinning lifts at 3:30 p.m. on Oct. 11, i.e. this afternoon, making A-Basin the first North American Resort to usher in the 2019-2020 ski season.

Arapahoe Basin Opening Day Oct. 11, 2019

Arapahoe Basin becomes the first ski resort in North America to usher in the 2019-2020 ski season. 

If you can bail early from work and get up to A-Basin, you can pick up a ticket for just $15 and ski from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. on the intermediate run High Noon off the Black Mountain Express, then celebrate the official start to the ski season at the ski area’s 6th Alley Bar and Grill.

“We did this because the snow is really good, our people are anxious, and we are ready to go. We thought it would be fun,” said Alan Henceroth, A-Basin’s COO.

“The race to be the first to open in Colorado and the country is always a treat,” Henceroth wrote on his blog. “Vail has announced that Keystone is opening tomorrow. I know Loveland is right on their tail. Congratulations to both resorts.”

Starting Saturday, Oct. 12, A-Basin will spin lifts during regular operating hours, and the 6th Alley Bar and Grill will open at 8 a.m. Ski and snowboard rentals will also be available beginning at 8 a.m. Day lift tickets can be purchased at the ticket window for $95 (adults), $80 (ages 15-18), and $51 (ages 6-14).

Read more: Vail Resorts and A-Basin End Pass Partnership

This year, Ikon Pass holders gain access to seven days of skiing and riding at A-Basin thanks to a new limited partnership between the resort and Alterra. The Ikon Base Pass offers five days of skiing with some blackout dates. Those looking for unlimited and unrestricted access to the Legend can still buy an Arapahoe Basin season pass for $499 (adult), $339 (ages 15-18), and $99-$209 for children (ages 6-14).

Learn more: 2019-2020 Ikon Pass Details 

The Legend, which usually enjoys one of the longest ski seasons in Colorado, open from mid-October through June and often later, always has a large turnout for opening weekend. So word to the wise: get there early for parking and a good spot in the lift line. Make sure to pick up your pass or tickets before heading to the mountain to avoid waiting in the long line of last-minute purchasers. And don’t forget to grab your friends, costumes, and everything you need for a fun-filled beach day because it’s finally here: the start of the 2019-2020 ski season. 

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