Winter is still officially seven weeks away from happening, but there already is a handful of North American resorts officially doing business right now.
But that could all change by the end of the week.
For the nonce, Arapahoe Basin and Loveland Ski Area in Colorado, Mt. Rose-Ski Tahoe in Nevada, Timberline in Oregon and Wild Mountain in Minnesota are or have been spinning their lifts for the 2017-18 season.
- Arapahoe, which is open daily, is reporting an 18-inch base with one lift (Black Mountain Express) gaining access to two intermediate runs (High Noon and Ramrod) and one terrain park.
- Loveland, also open on a daily basis, is reporting an 18-inch base with one lift (Lift 1) gaining access to three runs (Catwalk, Mambo and Home Run).
- Mt. Rose, which is open weekends only for now, is reporting a 10- to 18-inch base with one lift and two runs.
- Timberline is spinning the Palmer chair on weekends, giving access to advance terrain only.
- Wild Mountain took advantage of a blizzard that hit the upper Midwest last week and is running its Front Stage rope tow on a daily basis, giving access to a beginner slope and a small terrain park.
Down the Road
The prospect for many Western resorts getting a jump start on the season is looking very promising as a good-size storm is expected to slam into the Pacific Northwest and Northern California over the next several days.
British Columbia, Washington, Oregon and northern Idaho and Montana will be hit by the end of the week, with some areas expecting more than a foot of snow.
Northern California will be smacked by the weekend, with snowfall totals in the Sierra possibly totaling 24 inches.
Colorado and Utah also will receive snow as the system moves through the Rockies.
All this meteorological activity will lay the foundation for what is expected to be a flurry of resort openings in the next couple of weeks.
Winter is a coming. Bring it on!