Big news coming out of Colorado! After receiving over 24 inches of snow, combined with favorable conditions, Wolf Creek in Colorado has opened, just in time for Halloween weekend! While early opening days doesn’t necessarily mean a longer 2021 ski and snowboard season, it is still exciting to know that our favorite winter activity is back up and running. Before you rush out the door with all of your gear, or book that plane ticket, let’s go through 5 major changes for this year’s winter snow season.
Reserve Ahead of Time
Due to Covid still being an issue in the United States, many resorts have limited the number of skiers and snowboarders on the mountain at a time. Because of this, resorts are utilizing a reservation system to keep track of how many people are on the mountain. Many resorts are also no longer accepting walk-up skiers and snowboarders without reservations. While this may mean the end of the “spur of the moment” trips, it doesn’t mean your 2020-2021 ski and snowboard season is over before it starts! With just a little bit of planning, you’ll be shredding pow and going down chutes in no-time. Reserving early is the best way to ensure that you’ll have a slot when you go. Check out where you want to go ahead of time for reservation availability. If you want to get priority reservations, even during peak times, an Ikon Pass is a great option. If you use a Sun & Ski Sports code, you’ll receive some bonus perks with your Ikon pass purchase!
Check Availability for Activities
Besides reservations just to be on the mountain, you will need to call ahead and check availability for all other activities. This includes activities such as ski school, rentals, and more. While Wolf Creek’s opening does not include ski school, other resorts may have limited operations when opening. As always, it is good to plan ahead for any other outing or activity.
Food and Hydration
Many resorts will have limited food and drink options available. Plan ahead by bringing your own food and drinks. Pack lunch and keep it warm with a Yeti Roadie 24 Cooler for a car-side picnic. As for your drink options, stay on the mountain longer with a hydration pack. Keep it tucked under your outer shell, and you’ll have easy access to between 50 to 100 ounces of water. Or, get a snow specific hydration pack such as the Camelbak Kicker Snow Hydration Pack. It can withstand both heat and cold, keeping your water supply ready when you need it.
Be Prepared for Longer Lift Lines
While there may be fewer people on the mountains, some resorts have warned that there may be longer than normal lift wait times. This is due to their social distancing procedures on lifts. Groups that are skiing together will be able to ride lifts together. On the other hand, individual riders will get their own lift and won’t be able to join an empty seat next to another group. Some resorts are even implementing empty lifts between riders. Regardless of what the resort policy is, be prepared for longer wait times.
Face Masks Required
Another policy that many resorts are setting is that face coverings are required even while on the mountain. Simply put, a face covering such as your buff, balaclava, or Anon M2 Goggles with MFI Facemask, should be worn at all times.
Check Snow Brains for a complete list of policies and procedures in place for the 2020-2021 ski and snowboard season. While some of these policies may seem restricting, it’ll be worth it when you feel the wind rush past you as you carve out fresh powder and finally feel free! Before you go, check out our ski and snowboard/ snow packing list to make sure you have the right gear. Be sure to check out our blog with helpful information on your favorite winter activities, including tips for a winter road trip. If you need any services such as a tune-up on your skis or snowboards before this winter season, visit us in-store or online at your local Sun & Ski Sports.