Today I'm headed for the slopes at Arapahoe Basin, where it has snowed more than 23 inches in the last three days and where, as I reported last week, the season has officially been extended through at least June 19 (seven days a week through June 5, then three-day weekends starting June 10-12).
I keep promising my editors I'll put snowboarding behind me to work on finding some Spring and Summer outdoor sports news to write about, but then things like this keep happening...
This week Keystone announced it's delaying the opening of its downhill mountain biking park (originally scheduled for this Friday, May 27, the start of the resort's Summer Remix event) but will have more than 20 freestyle features in its ski and snowboard terrain park under the Ranger lift. Why not open more of the mountain up? There's snow in the forecast at Keystone for the next three days, and they just might. There's also Hawaiian-themed snow tubing to be had this weekend at Keystone's Adventure Point.
Now we have similar news from Aspen Mountain, where they just announced they'll be firing up the Ajax Express lift and opening at least 25 runs this weekend (and every weekend going forward, for as long as the snow conditions will allow). With a little luck, Aspen Mountain could make it to the middle of June, too: This year there could be skiing and snowboarding at the same time as Aspen's annual Food & Wine Classic (June 17-19). Rich Burkley, Aspen's vice president of mountain operations, sounds as if he's ready to get on with summer, already.
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"We figure that if we open for skiing maybe it will quit snowing," Burkley said in a statement issued last week. "We encourage everyone to go up and make a few turns then jump on your bike, hit the trails or swing the golf club. It's certainly a unique opportunity to enjoy everything the valley has to offer."