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Colorado ski resorts open early for the first time in nearly 10 years

By Chaffin Mitchell, AccuWeather staff writer
November 07, 2018, 9:36:27 AM EST

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Natural snow has set up the ideal early-season conditions for both Breckenridge Ski Resort and Keystone Resort to open early for the first time in 10 years.

Up to five feet of snow has fallen across Breckenridge and Keystone since mid-October, with up to four feet of snow in the past week alone.

“This is the first time in nearly 10 years that either Breckenridge or Keystone will be opening early,” said John Buhler, Breckenridge’s vice president and chief operating officer.

Originally set to open on Friday, Nov. 9, both Breckenridge and Keystone will now open for the 2018-19 winter season at 9 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 7.

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(Image via Keystone Resort)


“It’s been a snowy start to the season and it is official; the skiing and snowboarding season is here. We are thrilled to kick off the winter season this week and anticipate opening up a variety of terrain quickly at the resorts," Buhler said.

The resorts are opening two days early this year because of close to four feet of snow in the past week alone.

"It is a huge deal for Keystone and Breckenridge. This is the first time in nearly a decade that both resorts have been able to open earlier than our announced dates," said Russell Carlton, communications manager for Keystone Resort.

The weather has really worked in the favor of the resorts this year.

"It's been a combination of mother nature and our snow making and mountain operations team. They have been working 24/7 since about the middle of October to get various parts of the mountain open," Carlton said.

According to Carlton, the low temperatures the last few weeks with the natural snowfall leads us to an earlier-than-expected opening day at Keystone and Breckenridge.


At Breckenridge, skiers and riders will have skiing and riding via the Colorado SuperChair and Rip’s Ride, and terrain updates will continue to be made throughout the week.

"Both Keystone and Breckenridge are open every single day all the way until April. Keystone will close the first week of April. Breck actually stays open for two or three weeks of April. So a lot of skiing ahead," Carlton said.

Keystone will offer skiing and riding on beginner trails Schoolmarm and Silver Spoon, with access provided by the River Run Gondola and the Montezuma Express Chairlift.

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On Wednesday, Keystone will welcome skiers and snowboarders with homemade breakfast treats from Keystone’s new executive pastry chef, as well as hot chocolate and coffee at the base of River Run Gondola.

Guests will have access to ski and snowboard lessons with the Keystone Ski & Ride School, rentals, food and beverage options.

On Friday, Keystone will continue to celebrate getting the snow season, with raffles and prizes, including Helly Hansen hats and backpacks and Starbucks gift packs and music and expanded terrain.

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