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It was looking pretty bleak at the beginning of October for any earlier-than-usual ski-resort openings across the country, but post-Halloween storms rolling through Colorado, Utah, and into California are giving skiers a little more of an optimistic outlook.
A little over a week ago there was one resort open—Arapahoe Basin, which was the first major ski area to kick off the 2022-’23 season. Now there are eight resorts spinning lifts, with more to come over the next couple weeks. We can now say, with enthusiasm, that ski season is on!
8 North American Ski Resorts Spinning Lifts This Weekend
Loveland Ski Area, Colo.
Thanks to a juicy storm that dropped a foot of snow on the Rockies earlier this week, Loveland Ski Area started spinning its lifts on Nov. 3, kicking off the 2022-’23 season with one top-to-bottom run off the Chet’s Dream express quad. As of Nov. 4’s 5 a.m. snow report, 10 inches of snow have fallen over the last 24 hours and the mid-mountain base is 25 inches.
Arapahoe Basin, Colo.
Arapahoe Basin got the party started on Oct. 23 with one intermediate trail off of the Black Mountain Express. The resort has seen seven inches from this storm, and now has two runs open, High Noon and Ramrod, as well as a small terrain park.
Wolf Creek, Colo.
After a 20-inch storm added to its meager six-inch base this week, Wolf Creek opens today (Nov. 4) with two beginner lifts (Nova and Lynx) followed by the Treasure Stoke and Bonanza chairs. As of this morning, the ski area reports 40 inches of snowfall, with 32 inches at mid-mountains. The resort plans to be open weekends until Nov. 18, but that could change with conditions.
Winter Park, Colo.
Winter Park celebrated its earliest opening day ever when the Gemini and Arrow lifts began turning on Halloween. The ski area got about six inches from the recent storm, and currently has four green trails and four lifts open.
Keystone Resort, Colo.
Keystone opened on Oct. 28 with a couple of summit runs accessed off the River Run gondola. Skiers initially had to download from mid-mountain via the gondola after skiing Schoolmarm or Silver Spoon, but thanks to equal parts Mother Nature and snowmaking, the runs are now open for top-to-bottom skiing. As of this morning’s report, the resort has measured 20 inches of snowfall so far this season and has five green and blue trails open.
Brian Head, Utah
Southern Utah’s Brian Head opens today (Nov. 4) after a storm brought almost a foot of snow to the slopes earlier this week. It’s the earliest opening ever for the 650-acre ski area, and the fourth-earliest opening for a ski resort in Utah state history. Expect two lifts to be spinning this weekend—Navajo Express and Paradise—serving three of the area’s 71 trails.
Mammoth Mountain, Calif.
California opens for ski season when Mammoth Mountain fires up its lifts tomorrow (Nov. 5), a full week earlier than planned, after a series of storms and colder temperatures facilitated snowmaking and decent slope coverage. Two or three runs will be accessible from the Main Lodge base area, with no beginner terrain on offer. This morning’s report cited 16 inches at the summit and 11 at the base.
Banff Sunshine, Alb.
The first Canadian resort to open for the season, Banff Sunshine does it without any snowmaking, to boot. Ullr delivered ahead of schedule this fall, allowing the Canadian Rockies resort to open the Strawberry Express lift yesterday (Nov. 3) serving mostly intermediate terrain. As of this morning, the resort reports a 27-inch base with almost three new inches over the last 24 hours.
Lake Louise, Alb.
Good news! Our crews are working hard and we expect to open 1 or 2 more lifts by the weekend. Stay tuned for updates! Which lift are you most excited for?#justlakeit #lakelouise #skilouise
Lake Louise was quick to follow Sunshine’s lead, opening one day later on Friday, Nov. 4. A couple weeks of consistent snowfall allowed the resort to open with a 15-inch base, and a smaller storm has added a couple more inches since. There’s currently one chairlift spinning, the Glacier Express, serving three runs, with more lifts and runs expected to open this week.