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Mountain West ski resorts extend their seasons amid record winter

A snowboarder wearing a bright green jacket shreds in deep powder. The person is in the middle of a stand of trees spraying tons of snow and is almost obscured by the snow spray.
Chris Pearson
Ski Utah

Several ski areas in the Mountain West have extended their seasons by a week or two as skiers and snowboarders relish in an epic powder year.

It’s still March, and some resorts have already set all-time snowfall records. In Utah, the Alta and Brighton ski areas have both surpassed 750 inches for the season.

“[It’s] the earliest this has happened that we're aware of since we started recording snow here in Utah in the 1940s,” said Ski Utah's Alison Palmintere. “It's definitely good news from an economic standpoint.”

Deer Valley extended its season beyond its planned closing day, as did Park City and Snowbasin.

In Colorado, several ski areas – including Arapahoe Basin, Copper, Monarch and Steamboat – have also announced extensions.

“Across the state, it's been a fantastic snow year,” said Sarah Beatty with Colorado Ski Country USA. “It just feels to the resorts kind of celebratory. Skiers and riders are also like, ‘Yes, let's get out there.’”

She said the big snow year is very welcome after a couple of dry seasons and a year cut short by the pandemic. How resorts decide what terrain stays open will depend on conditions and how many seasonal staff members can stick around to keep operations going.

Elsewhere in the Mountain West, Tamarack in Idaho and Ski Sante Fe in New Mexico will also go another week or so, and some Lake Tahoe-area resorts have said they’ll remain open into May or beyond.

This story was produced by the Mountain West News Bureau, a collaboration between Wyoming Public Media, Nevada Public Radio, Boise State Public Radio in Idaho, KUNR in Nevada, the O'Connor Center for the Rocky Mountain West in Montana, KUNC in Colorado, KUNM in New Mexico, with support from affiliate stations across the region. Funding for the Mountain West News Bureau is provided in part by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.
Copyright 2023 Wyoming Public Radio. To see more, visit Wyoming Public Radio.

Will Walkey