Areas of Colorado saw a variety of conditions this week after a storm that heavily favored the Front Range. Those lucky enough to ski Eldora this past weekend saw 10 inches of powder with plenty of face shots to go around, whereas only 1 to 2 inches fell at Loveland Basin.
Despite the new flakes, Colorado’s snowpack compared with the historic median has started to fall. Within a week, the statewide median fell 56 percent. That being said, the early season snow is still high-quality, with Loveland Ski Area calling the past two months the “best start” in its 81-year history.
Vail, Monarch and Beaver Creek hopped on the early opening train this week. Though Vail touted prime snowmaking conditions, Monarch thanked Mother Nature for delivering 100 percent natural snow.
Since last weekend’s storm, the mountains have been mostly dry and will continue to be until a weak storm passes through the state Saturday.
Mountain dance party
Breckenridge is celebrating the start to the season in style with the DEW Snow Dance. Check out live music from local bands and DJs on the mountain between 8:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. followed by a free show from electronic artists Gramatik, Big Boi and others.
Pro riders Red Gerard and Jules Marino will also be in attendance. Gerard is a Silverthorne native and won gold in slopestyle at the 2018 Olympics in PyeongChang. Marino, who is from southern Connecticut, won gold in slopestyle and bronze in big air during her first year at the X Games in 2017 at Buttermilk Mountain.
Breckenridge will offer free parking at the Satellite Lot with a 5-minute shuttle ride to the BreckConnect Gondola. Be sure to get to the 4 p.m. concert on time, for capacity is limited.
The Colorado Avalanche Information Center began its regional avalanche forecasts Thursday, meaning they’ll have detailed avalanche and weather reports for its 10 zones. Given the variability of snowpack, wind, temperatures and other factors in each corner of the state, the breakdown of each area is essential during the height of the season to keeping skiers safe.
Avalanche conditions in most of the Interstate 70 corridor and areas east of the divide are rated as moderate, with north and east-facing slopes with wind-loading most likely to slide. Grand Mesa, Steamboat & the Flat Tops and the San Juans are rated as low.
For more information, go to http://avalanche.state.co.us.
Head to Gazette.com for this week’s photo of the week from Carl Anderson on Monarch Pass. If you have a photo from your adventures skiing, snowboarding, ice climbing or another winter sport, send them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Twitter: @lizmforster Phone: 636-0193