Vail Opening Day 2008

It finally happened…we can all rest easy now…Vail Mountain is officially open for the 2008 season. The gondola was in use for beginner skiing and Chair 8 was running for all you hard carving chargers! The sun was shining and the lift lines were only ten minutes long. A few Antlers employees hiked to a couple secret spots and claimed some early season powder turns. Don’t tell Ski Patrol! Snow is in the forecast for next week…keep your fingers crossed.-Matt “Zuder” Zaremba

Vail Snow Report

New Snow in Vail today, November 6th. We received about 8 inches of snow the last two days and it is cold! Not sure how much snow is at the top of the mountain. Snow making operations are full speed ahead. It is winter outside for sure.

The Antlers bike covered with a bit of snow.

Snowmaking operations at the base of Lionshead

Here is a video of the snow making operations

We are getting excited

Avoid the Arapahoe Basin Madness

A winter storm warning is in effect for Vail/Beaver Creek this week! However, we couldn’t wait another 17 days for Vail to open…instead we did what 100’s of other idiots did…we packed the car and headed to Arapahoe Basin. Again? Right now, A-Basin is like Great America, you wait in line for 30 minutes for 1 minute of fun. Here are some tips if you want to avoid the madness:

1. Arrive at 2pm. You will get 2 hours of solid runs in as everybody seems to leave A-Basin around that time.

2. If you go on a Sunday try to show up at the start of the Bronco game. Half of the lines disappeared this weekend as the Broncos got punked by the Dolphins. Sorry Denver! Look on the bright side, you just traded Allen Iverson for Chauncey Billups (2004 Finals MVP).

3. If the lines are long head to the bar for a Bloody Mary. They are top-notch!

– Matt “Zuder” Zaremba

Vail Snowmaking October 31st, 2008

Oh baby! They fired up the snowmaking machines in Vail late last night. We could hear them down here at the Antlers. They’ll be blowing snow on Born Free for the next week or so, in anticipation of Vail’s opening day (November 21st). Typically Born Free Express opens first, followed by the Gondola. Hopefully, mother nature will provide some opening assistance with a blast of cold air and snow on Tuesday/Wednesday.

Vail Opening Day 2008…is almost here.

A Basin First Day of the Year

A Basin First Day Of The Year!

Let the ski/riding season begin. Arapahoe Basin opened their runs to those who just couldn’t wait another 30 days (Vail opening day 11/21/08). I had to go check out the famous “white ribbon of death.” As to be expected the one open run was crowded with die hard snow addicts. It was the place to be seen on a Monday in the Rocky Mountains…with all the latest fashion trends for the 08/09 season in full effect. Get your neon out of the closet because the 80’s made their way back to the snow this year. On a more serious note…thanks to A-Basin for making snow! The ski conditions were surprisingly awesome. I’m headed back for some more man-made Rocky Mountain Champagne next weekend. Hope to see you there.
A Basin White Ribbon Of Death

A Basin White Ribbon Of Death

Epic Day on the slopes…March 31?

Yeehaw! What a day. No one would have guessed we’d have this much snow on March 31st…and it’s still dumping! Today was truly an epic day filled with face shots and perma-grin (and no lift lines). Life is good!

JUST ANOTHER……DAY IN PARADISE

I reported awhile back about skiing again and mentioned that I look forward to going out with my kids as long as they put on my boots and make sure I’m warm enough (01/13/08 post). Well Lauren, my youngest, is home on school break and offered to do just that. We skied together for the first time in 10 years and what a blast on Vail Mountain. THIS IS YOUR VAIL SKI REPORT MARCH 19.The sky was brilliant blue. The temperature was 37 degrees. The sun was much warmer than that. The snow was soft and easy to ski. In spite of spring break, the crowds were minimal. What a wonderful day on the mountain.For anyone keeping stats, I took my first major spill under Chair 7 in Game Creek and put on quite a display for all that were fortunate enough to witness it from the chair. Without exaggeration, 300 hundred yards on my back doing whirlybirds. No problem though. Not even my ego was damaged.Spring skiing is here and you have to come and enjoy this before it’s done.

March Vail ski conditions

March 30 Great spring skiing today, although it was quite cloudy. I met up with some buddies (the Stoffel twins) from my College days today. (picture taken with phone camera) We went to St. John’s in Minnesota back in the late 80s. We did mainly cruisers off of chair 10 and 11. Remember, ride Chair 10 for a long-long cruisers. From the top of 10 you go all the way down Flap Jack and then you take a short cat-walk to the right of Chair 11 to lower Highline (groomed). Later we did soft bump laps off of Chair 3, Kangaroo cornices and Look Ma, again and again. Nice and soft everywhere. 2 inches of new snow. Chris R.March 29 We’ll admit it. Us locals have been a bit spoiled this winter with all the great snow. Many of us haven’t been up in the past week. We have been resting. Last few days have been a bit cloudy with flat light, although the sun will poke through for an hour here or there. What this means is that it is quite crusty early in the morning and you have to stick to the groomed runs. Without the sun, it can take till 2pm or 3pm before the runs soften up. Ouch. Light snow this morning. We need a 3 or 4 inches to freshen up the slopes, but don’t fret. There is a ton of base up on the mountain and they are calling for snow this Sunday night. We’d be skiing till May if they weren’t closing the lifts April 13th! Oh man.March 23 Holy smokes. It is still cold out there. I went up super late (2pm) and I figured it was going to be warm. Sun was shining and down in Lionshead it felt like spring. NOT. Glad I had my warm gloves, hat, neck gator, etc. High was around 32 or 33F and windy. When is Spring coming? Conditions were a bit icy. Not East Coast type of ice mind you, but the bumps were hard. Chris R.

March 18 The family (brother, sister and nephews) were in town and we had a wonderful day on the hill. We even took the brother out to Blue Sky Basin. I didn’t realize that he had never skied in the back bowls in all the times he had visited Vail. Crazy. They all slept in our employee housing unit at the Antlers. The floor was pretty packed! Chris R.March 17 They reported 4 inches of snow. Sunny skies today. None of us from the front desk could get out but guests were saying, “one of the best days ever”. You know, we’ve been hearing that a lot this winter. Chris R.March 16 Light snow showers in the afternoon. The front side was crowded with many Spring Breakers. The bowls were quiet. Amazing how even on the south facing back bowls the snow is still light and dry. It isn’t set up from melting too much. I skied by the fuel pumps for the groomers at the top of the mountain near Buffalo’s. You can really see how much snow we have by how low to the ground the pumps are. It will be late June before all that snow is gone.Chris R.Today I snowboarded at Beaver Creek for the day before I had to get to work. Unfortunately, I rode alone, which I do not prefer but I just had to get out. The ten inches we got from Thursday and Friday was still good in most sections of the mountain. The only bad part is that the sun melted the snow, which made it hard, icy, and rugged. I had a great time but I’ve been having problems with my left big toe. The front of my toe rams into my boot and I have bruises underneath my toenail. (Everyone I guess can relate to this) On my way to work the snow started coming down pretty hard and I knew that tomorrow was going to be a powder day. I wasn’t going to let a little bruise toe ruin my powder day. And neither should you! J. CoghillMarch 14 Powder day! 10 inches of new snow. I took Snowitch’s suggestion and skied the front side (even the lower half) of the mountain today and I had my own tracks till 11am. Snowing hard throughout the day and more snow predicted for the week. It will be great skiing for those here on the Easter Holiday. Usually in March the North side of Interstate 70 is looking brown and the grass is showing due to the slopes facing directly into the sun. Not this year. Some back-country skiers are even hiking up and making tracks down these south facing slopes. In MARCH! Wow. Chris R.March 9 Sunny day! Sort of like mid-winter conditions still. I over dressed and I’m glad I did. If you were on North facing slopes it was a bit cold. I saw Hank Frazier (super long-time ski instructor) and he said he has overdressed every day since December and hasn’t regretted it. When will spring arrive? There was a light dusting of snow. They groomed Bolshoi Ballet the day before and I headed over for the poma lift. Nobody around and the groomed slopes were buffed. Any north facing slopes had light and dry snow, southern slopes corned up a bit with the sun. Chris R.March 8 Some college buddies of mine had come to visit me for the weekend in Vail. I have not seen them in about 2 years, but growing up we always would go on snowboarding trips. We all were pretty good riders and have been to Vail in the past. The conditions our first day out were great with a solid 2-3 inches from the night before. We all decided it would be best to get out early and make our way straight back to Blue Sky Basin. It was wonderful back there because the chair lift lines were to a minimal for a Saturday and it was not “skied-out” as much as the front side of the mountain. We all had a blast especially my two buddies that have never traveled back to Blue Sky Basin before. Overall it was a great day with it not being too cold out and the chair lift lines moving fast. J. CoghillMarch 7 Well, it is good now. Great skiing. Sunny today with 3-4 inches of powder at the top of the mountain (only an inch down low). Cold still. We can’t believe how cold it has been the last week. We are in March, aren’t we? Great groomers, no ice, and sun. However, a bit of some lines at the lifts. Nobody at Chair 3 but Chair 4 West maze was PACKED. I made runs on Chair 3 while the rest were waiting. It must be getting late in the season because the groomers were having fun. I saw a bunch of them all split up underneath the gondola doing their own thing. They sure weren’t working as a team today. One went down Minnie’ mile (just one mind you) then another was under the gondola where the lift cuts through the trees, which isn’t a ski run. But the groomer was smoothing it out nicely. Sort of fun to watch. Chris R.March 6 Snowy, cold, and difficult to see. Glad I wasn’t up today but then again, some were coming down and saying it was wonderful. High of 19 degrees all day at the bottom of the mountain. Not sure how cold it was up on top.