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Powderhorn pushes back opening day

Published: Nov. 22, 2021 at 8:10 PM MST|Updated: Nov. 22, 2021 at 8:22 PM MST
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GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KKCO) - It’s been remarkably warm at this time of year compared to previous years. Resulting in Powderhorn moving back their tentative opening day, which was scheduled for Friday, Nov. 26.

Normally the resort opens in mid December. But due to high snow levels over the last few years, they thought they would open early this year. But Mother Nature had other plans. Powderhorn Marketing and Sales Director Ryan Robinson says there has been a lot less snow this year compared to previous years and its been much warmer.

“Compared to last year we’ve had about half as much early season natural snowfall,” said Robinson. “And its been much warmer this year so we’ve only made about 10-15% of the snow we made up to this point last year.”

Mountain crews are ready with the snow making system and their staff is onboarded. They’re just waiting for the lower temperatures so they can make more man-made snow to open.

“We aren’t quite ready for opening day yet,” said Robinson. “Typically we open mid December. With the new snow making system we installed we’re looking for every opportunity to make additional man made snow. But we still need some help from Mother Nature. We need colder temperatures and natural snowfall to supplement what we’re doing with the man made snow. It’s been warm and it’s been dry.”

Meteorologist Brad Miller says the mountains throughout the state have generally been experiencing the same thing as Powderhorn. But that it won’t be like this all winter long and we will still get snow eventually.

“A weak little system moving through here before Thanksgiving might pick up a few inches of snow out of that but its not gonna be a big benefit to the ski resorts out there,” said Miller. “It’s just a weak system moving through with very little moisture. So once that’s out of here we’re probably not talking about much of anything for at least another week.”

With Powderhorn’s delayed tentative opening, we asked some local businesses around the resort if they will be affected. The businesses within the resort did not want to comment. But after speaking with a few businesses in Mesa, just outside of the resort, they say since the resort normally opens in December that they will not be impacted by the delayed opening. They do say the pandemic has hurt their businesses significantly. Wagon Wheel Motel in Mesa says some of the businesses had to close down through the pandemic.

Powderhorn will keep the public updated on their opening day online by visiting powderhorn.com.

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