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Photo via Breckenridge Ski Resort

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Skiers who were hoping to start the weekend early were thwarted from hitting the slopes at Breckenridge Ski Resort and Keystone Resort much of Friday morning after a natural gas line problem cut off electricity to more than 17,000 customers in Summit County.

Both mountains were operating normally Saturday.

The resorts tweeted just after 8 a.m. Friday that their lifts would not be spinning, though the first reports of the outage came into Xcel Energy, Summit County’s electricity provider, about 7 a.m.

Riders took to Twitter to express their frustrations, comparing the situation to failed celebrity music festivals and opting to enjoy libations as they waited in the parking lot.

Many who purchased day or multi-day tickets demanded refunds. Vail Resorts spokeswoman Sara Lococo said refunds would be made on a case-by-case basis.

By noon, the resorts had partially reopened, including night skiing and tubing. The Outback at Keystone remained closed for the duration of the day. Power was restored to all customers by 3 p.m.

Xcel asked those in the Breckenridge, Silverthorne, Dillon and Keystone areas to leave their homes immediately if they detect a sulfur or “rotten egg” smell inside . Do not turn electrical devices on or off and never use any phone until outside and safely away from the area. Then call Xcel at 1-800-895-2999. In an emergency, call 911.

Xcel did not detect gas leaks and rerouted its natural gas service. There was a loss of pressure in the system, Summit County tweeted. Crews worked to isolate the source and identify the cause.

Twitter: @lizmforster

Phone: 636-0193

Liz Forster is a general assignment reporter with a focus on environment and public safety. She is a Colorado College graduate, avid hiker and skier, and sweet potato enthusiast. Liz joined The Gazette in June 2017.

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