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Beaver Creek breaks ground on 250-acre McCoy Park ski expansion for 2021-22

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July 1, 2021, 9:39 pm
From left to right, Gary Shimanowitz, Nadia Guerriero,  Eagle-Holy Cross District Ranger Leanne Veldhuis,  Carl Eaton and Dan Ramker, director of mountain operations at Beaver Creek (David O. Williams photo).

Beaver Creek on Thursday broke ground on a 250-acre expansion of beginner and intermediate ski terrain high atop the mountain with expansive views of the Sawatch and Gore Mountain ranges.

Its new McCoy Park terrain will include two new quad lifts, 17 new alpine skiing trails and a smaller network of Nordic trails. In all, the expansion, which will be open for the 2021-22 ski season, takes Beaver Creek up to 2,082 skiable alpine acres, 25 lifts and 167 trails.

Part of Beaver Creek’s “Signature Parks Collection,” McCoy Park will offer learning terrain, with a dedicated family-friendly zone, along with intermediate, gladed and groomed runs – all with mountain-top views on the western edge of the resort.

“Combined with our world-class ski and ride school instructors, our commitment to this type of terrain sets Beaver Creek apart as the destination for families seeking mountain adventures,” Beaver Creek Chief Operating Officer Nadia Guerriero said in a press release.

Guerriero and other ski company and United States Forest Service (USFS) officials planted shovels on the site of what will become a new ski patrol facility, warming hut and bathrooms for the public.

“A project like this takes so much planning and coordination. We’re lucky to have great partners at the USFS and so many experienced members of the team, from planning to mountain operations to lift installation,” said Gary Shimanowitz, vice president of mountain operations for Beaver Creek.

“Adding these two lifts will change the flow on the mountain, as we saw when we introduced Red Buffalo Park,” Shimanowitz added. “We’ll provide a better experience for our guests, spreading skiers and riders out into varied terrain across the mountain.”

Carl Eaton, the son of Vail founder Earl Eaton, was 15 when Beaver Creek opened on Dec. 15, 1980. As a sophomore in high school, Eaton skied with a VIP opening day paper ticket and went on to work at Vail and Beaver Creek for the next 38 years. Eaton, also on hand for Thursday’s groundbreaking, is now director of lift maintenance at Beaver Creek.

“The Signature Parks Collection is what sets Beaver Creek apart from other resorts,” Eaton said. “On opening day in 1980 I skied what is now known as Red Buffalo Park, so to be a part of adding this McCoy Park installment is a great honor.

“Beaver Creek has expanded and evolved through the years, but has always stayed true to the family experience,” Eaton added. “It’s what keeps me and my family here year after year. It has been great to watch my son, now 10, grow up learning to ski here.”

The McCoy Park expansion is part of big capital spending spree by Vail Resorts around the country, including a new high-speed lift at Peak 7 in Breckenridge, a new high-speed lift at Keystone and major upgrades at Okemo. 

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David O. Williams

Managing Editor at RealVail
David O. Williams is the editor and co-founder of RealVail.com and has had his awarding-winning work (see About Us) published in more than 75 newspapers and magazines around the world, including 5280 Magazine, American Way Magazine (American Airlines), the Anchorage Daily News (Alaska), the Anchorage Daily Press (Alaska), Aspen Daily News, Aspen Journalism, the Aspen Times, Beaver Creek Magazine, the Boulder Daily Camera, the Casper Star Tribune (Wyoming), the Chicago Tribune, Colorado Central Magazine, the Colorado Independent (formerly Colorado Confidential), Colorado Politics (formerly the Colorado Statesman), Colorado Public News, the Colorado Springs Gazette, the Colorado Springs Independent, the Colorado Statesman (now Colorado Politics), the Colorado Times Recorder, the Cortez Journal, the Craig Daily Press, the Curry Coastal Pilot (Oregon), the Daily Trail (Vail), the Del Norte Triplicate (California), the Denver Daily News, the Denver Gazette, the Denver Post, the Durango Herald, the Eagle Valley Enterprise, the Eastside Journal (Bellevue, Washington), ESPN.com, Explore Big Sky (Mont.), the Fort Morgan Times (Colorado), the Glenwood Springs Post-Independent, the Grand Junction Daily Sentinel, the Greeley Tribune, the Huffington Post, the King County Journal (Seattle, Washington), the Kingman Daily Miner (Arizona), KUNC.org (northern Colorado), LA Weekly, the Las Vegas Sun, the Leadville Herald-Democrat, the London Daily Mirror, the Moab Times Independent (Utah), the Montgomery Journal (Maryland), the Montrose Daily Press, The New York Times, the Parent’s Handbook, Peaks Magazine (now Epic Life), People Magazine, Powder Magazine, the Pueblo Chieftain, PT Magazine, the Rio Blanco Herald Times (Colorado), Rocky Mountain Golf Magazine, the Rocky Mountain News, RouteFifty.com (formerly Government Executive State and Local), the Salt Lake Tribune, SKI Magazine, Ski Area Management, SKIING Magazine, the Sky-Hi News, the Steamboat Pilot & Today, the Sterling Journal Advocate (Colorado), the Summit Daily News, United Hemispheres (United Airlines), Vail/Beaver Creek Magazine, Vail en Español, Vail Health Magazine, Vail Valley Magazine, the Vail Daily, the Vail Trail, Westword (Denver), Writers on the Range and the Wyoming Tribune Eagle. Williams is also the founder, publisher and editor of RealVail.com and RockyMountainPost.com.

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