A combination of some of the best early-November snowmaking conditions and more than four feet of natural snowfall last week have allowed both Vail Mountain and Beaver Creek Resort to open early for the 2018-19 ski and snowboard season. Vail, originally slated to open on Friday, Nov. 16, will open for the season on Wednesday, Nov. 14, at 9 a.m. Beaver Creek will open Saturday, Nov. 17, four days ahead of its scheduled Nov. 21 opening date.
Vail will offer skiing and riding out of both Vail Village and Lionshead Village, with upload and download access to the Mid-Vail area via Gondola One and top-to-bottom skiing and riding through Lionshead Village. Complimentary breakfast burritos from Vail Mountain and hot cocoa will be provided for early risers on opening day while supplies last.
Beaver Creek will open the mountain all the way to the top with intermediate terrain on Gold Dust accessed via Centennial Express (#6), plus beginner terrain in Red Buffalo Park accessible via the Cinch Express (#8) and last year’s new Red Buffalo Express (#5), and Haymeadow Park and the Haymeadow Express Gondola (#1). Opening day festivities will include a special Cookie Time in the morning.
Conditions have been excellent – and the Xfinity Birds of Prey Audi FIS Ski World Cup downhill, super G, and Giant Slalom courses are already in fantastic condition.
“We are thrilled to be kicking off the 2018-19 season by opening early and truly setting the tone for the season to come at both Vail and Beaver Creek,” said Doug Lovell, Vail chief operating officer. “This is the first time we’ve been able to open both resorts early in more than 10 years. We owe a big thank you to our mountain operations teams for their hard work in making this possible for our loyal guests and season pass holders.”
Beginning on Wednesday, Nov. 14, skiers and snowboarders will have access to the following lifts and more than 500 acres of skiable terrain accessible via the following lifts on Vail Mountain:
- Gondola One
- Eagle Bahn Gondola (#19)
- Born Free Express Lift (#8)
- Avanti Express (#2)
- Wildwood Express Lift (#3)
- Mountain Top Express Lift (#4)
- Little Eagle Lift (#15)
Beginning Saturday, Nov. 17, skiers and snowboarders will have top-to-bottom skiing on more than 220 acres of beginner and intermediate terrain accessible via the following lifts at Beaver Creek:
- Centennial Express (#6)
- Cinch Express (#8)
- Red Buffalo Express (#5)
- Haymeadow Express Gondola (#1)
All guests are reminded that they must observe all posted signs, closures and slow zones, especially during the early-season. Closed trails may contain hazards due to early snow coverage. Accessing closed terrain is a violation of the Colorado Ski Safety Act and will result in the loss of skiing privileges and could involve prosecution and a fine.
At Vail, the Golden Peak base area and the Riva Bahn Express Lift (#6) are a designated race training area only and will open to the public at a later date.
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