Aspen Mountain closes for skiing, but will it open again? Skico officials to decide this week if more bonus days coming | PostIndependent.com

Aspen Mountain closes for skiing, but will it open again? Skico officials to decide this week if more bonus days coming

David Krause
The Aspen Times

Ski season is on hold for a least a day as the Aspen Skiing Co. watches the weather forecast and will decide in the coming days if it will reopen Aspen Mountain for a few more bonus ski days.

Skico spokesman Jeff Hanle said Sunday afternoon that officials would like to announce sooner than later so they can give skiers and snowboarders a heads-up. But the decision will be centered off the warming forecast.

“Our goal is to decide on Monday, but if the week looks like it will stay hot, we may push back the decision to Wednesday or Thursday,” Hanle said. “We don’t have a hard-and-fast rule on when to decide, but we do like to give people as much notice as possible.”

The National Weather Service forecast for Aspen calls for highs in the low 70s all week and overnight lows in the mid-40s.

It was 51 degrees at the base Sunday morning when the gondola opened. Sunday afternoon a storm rolled through and the lift and gondola were closed for a while because of lightning.

“With the warming temperatures, we will have to monitor as we move along through the week and see what happens to make sure we can have a good and safe product,” Hanle said.

With a more than 5-foot base reported Friday, there is still a lot of snow at the top of the mountain (11,200 feet). The crowds the past two days were not nearly as large as Memorial Day Weekend, and the conditions changed earlier in the morning the first two days of June skiing than the previous weekend.

Crews have been grooming some of and maintaining all of 130 acres at the top of the mountain from the Ajax Express lift. There have been five extra days to the season since the mountain closed April 21.

The Silver Queen gondola is scheduled to open Saturday and Sunday for sightseers. The question is, will the Express lift open for skiers? The gondola’s daily summer operations are set for June 15 to Sept. 2 (and then weekends until Oct. 6). Much of the summer activities at the top of Aspen Mountain currently remain under a few feet of snow.

Other Colorado ski resorts that will remain open for the next few weekends include Arapahoe Basin, which plans to open the next three weekends (Fridays through Sundays) and Breckenridge, which plans to open again Saturday and Sunday.


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