Wolf Creek Ski Area got nineteen inches of snow last week, creating a base of 28 inches. All told, it has snowed 44 inches at Wolf Creek so far this year, which is nothing new for this Mecca for powder hounds. Some areas of the mountain have already been open for a few days, but the season will truly kick off on Wednesday, November 11.
You can read about every Colorado ski resort in the Edge, our winter sports guide. Find the Edge in print this week inside of Westword — or follow along as we roll out the guide online. Each description lays out what's new, what the signature experience is at each resort, what to splurge on, how to go cheap and, of course, what to drink. Now, head for the trees.
WOLF CREEK SKI AREA
What’s new: On-mountain improvements include expanded avalanche-control systems along the Knife Ridge and the addition of a free snowcat shuttle in Horseshoe Bowl, plus an upgraded race hutch and expanded Wolf Creek Fun Race series. The decidedly old-school ski area also stepped up its technology efforts for the 2015-2016 season, adding an online reservation system for premium demo ski and snowboard rentals and ski-lesson packages.
Signature experience: Take the free Horseshoe Bowl Snowcat Shuttle to get to the goods on Wolf Creek’s steepest and deepest runs, previously accessible to hikers only. “Finding fresh tracks on a powder day just got easier,” says Wolf Creek spokeswoman Sarah Stephens.
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Splurge: There aren’t a lot of frills at Wolf Creek, but Stephens recommends the double-shot espresso at the Continental. “A hidden gem at Wolf Creek is our high-altitude, full-service espresso bar, accessible by riding the Treasure Stoke chairlift. This is a great place to stop in for a warm-up.”
Ski bum tips: Check the calendar for Local Appreciation Days, when lift tickets drop to $43 (no ID required). For beginners, check out the “Guarantee to Learn” program: $65 includes a four-hour lesson and a full-day lift ticket for the Nova and Elma lifts serving beginner terrain, plus access to the Raven chairlift after 3 p.m.
Drink locally: “Raven’s Nest and Pathfinder Bar offer Colorado brews, including local brews from Three Barrel in Del Norte and SLV [San Luis Valley] Brewing in Alamosa,” Stephens says. Also, visit Pagosa Brewing, Riff Raff Brewing and Wolfe Brewing, all in nearby Pagosa Springs.