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Vail and Beaver Creek see nearly a foot and half of new snow

More snow in the forecast for next week

December 15, 2014, 9:59 am

Vail and Beaver Creek received a surprisingly robust early Christmas present Monday morning with both resorts tallying nearly a foot of new snow in the past 24 hours. That came on top of a half a foot overnight Saturday.

Beaver Creek has received 17 inches of new snow in the past 48 hours, and Vail isn’t far behind with 16 inches new.

vail powder from facebook

Powder conditions at Vail on Sunday (Vail Mountain Facebook page photo).

Meteorologist Joel Gratz of chalked it up to northwest flow more than doubling his forecast snow totals for the Vail Valley:

“Just enough moisture and just the right temperatures combined to create an additional 6+ inches after close along and north of I-70, including Vail, Beaver Creek, Copper, and Steamboat,” Gratz wrote Monday morning. “When this falls on top on the snow from Sunday, it should mean awesome conditions and likely faceshots. I thought we could get a few inches after close for ‘soft’ conditions on Monday morning, but this might be faceshot quality?!

“I don’t often do this, but man, I gotta get out there and ski, and so I don’t have time for a full update right now. I’ll write a longer post later this afternoon with more about the light snow possible on Wednesday and Thursday and also the likely pattern change around Christmas or just after.”

Vail on Monday announced it will expand operating hours on Friday, Dec. 19:

“With the shift in operating hours, the majority of front side lifts will open at 8:30 a.m. and close at 3:30 p.m.,” resort officials said in a press release. “The Back Bowls and Game Creek as well as Blue Sky Basin will open as soon as lifts and terrain are ready. The Back Bowls and Game Creek will continue to close at 3 p.m.; Blue Sky Basin will close at 2:30 p.m. Lift operating hours are posted at the base of all open lifts and are subject to change with conditions.”

For more information about Vail Mountain go to, stop by the Mountain Information Center, or call (970) SKI-VAIL (754-8245).

Beaver Creek on Friday announced the opening of two more lifts, bringing its total to 18 of 25 lifts operating, as well earlier opening hours beginning at 8:30 a.m. Here’s the full press release from Beaver Creek.

[Saturday], Beaver Creek Resort skiers and snowboarders will gain 30 more minutes on the slopes when lift operating hours shift to an 8:30 a.m. opening for the remainder of the season. Two additional lifts will open providing transport to different areas of the mountain and Park 101 terrain park opens in a new location. Signature dining experiences at Beano’s and Zach’s Cabins are now available for the winter season. Broken Arrow begins its daily winter service featuring hearty fare for skiers and is offering 30 percent off food services through Friday, Dec. 19.

The Elkhorn Lift (#14) and Arrow Bahn Express Lift (#17) will open providing uploading options to access skiing in Bachelor Gulch and on the main mountain. Both lifts will open 8:30 a.m. and the last upload for each lift will be 3:30 p.m. The Arrow Bahn Express Lift will also offer a downloading option for Arrowhead homeowners and guests and the last load from the top of the lift will be at 4 p.m. Currently there are no open trails in Arrowhead or under the Elkhorn Lift. Skiers and snowboarders are reminded to obey all posted signs and warnings and stay out of closed ski terrain. Failure to do so will result in the loss of lift privileges. Elkhorn guests may return to their lodging via Dial-A-Ride.

Beaver Creek’s Park 101 beginner level park  is now  located at the top of the Cinch Express Lift (#8) on Upper Golden Eagle trail in the former Zoom Room location. The park contains 25 features consisting of boxes and rails, and a three-pack jump line.

Beano’s and Zach’s Cabins will begin their gourmet multi-course sleigh ride dinners on Saturday, Dec. 13. Reservations are required and may be made online via www.beavercreekcom or Open Table or by calling (970) 754-3463 for Beano’s Cabin and (970) 754- 6575 for Zach’s Cabin.

Nordic and snowshoe adventurers will have 12-15 kilometers of dedicated Nordic and snowshoe trails to explore in McCoy Park starting tomorrow. Beaver Creek’s Ivy League Ski School is offering private and group lessons for adults and kids including their specialty signature programs.

New this winter,Vail Resorts is making it more convenient for guests to purchase their EpicDay Lift Tickets in advance at the lowest guaranteed price or up-to-the-minute from a new online and mobile platform. While buying early provides the best prices with up to 25 percent off from the walk up window rate, the new platform also now enables guests who purchase tickets less than seven days in advance to pick up their tickets at the resort from a new EpicDay Express Ticket Pick-Up Lane, bypassing the traditional ticket window line.  

For more information about terrain, lift tickets, events and programs visit

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