Arapahoe Basin Ski Area to open on July 4 for skiing, riding for first time in 7 years |

Arapahoe Basin Ski Area to open on July 4 for skiing, riding for first time in 7 years

Antonio Olivero | Summit Daily News
Next Thursday A-Basin for the first time since 2011 will open lift-serviced skiing and riding on the Fourth of July holiday.
Courtesy Katherine Fuller, Arapahoe Basin Ski Area

After weeks of speculation and anticipation, Arapahoe Basin Ski Area formally announced on Thursday afternoon that the ski area at the Continental Divide will be open for skiing and riding next Thursday, July 4th.

In the ski area’s press release announcement, A-Basin spokeswoman Katherine Fuller also said July 4 will be the ski area’s official closing date for the 2018-19 ski season.

The last time A-Basin was open on July 4 was eight years ago, in 2011. To put that year and this year into historical perspective, the longest season ever at the ski area was 24 years ago, in 1995, when A-Basin stayed open until Aug. 10.

In the ski area’s press release, Fuller explained that A-Basin is able to stay open to the Fourth of July in large part thanks to higher-than-average snowfall totals and lower-than-average temperatures in the months of March and May, including nearly seven feet of snowfall during March.

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That said, this season was not a record snowfall year for the ski area. At the start of June, A-Basin was at 106% of average snowfall — about 375 inches — for the season.

Fuller further explained that other contributing factors to A-Basin’s late season are its northern-facing front-side slopes and high elevation — 10,780-feet at the Mountain Goat Plaza base, 12,500-feet at the top of the ski area’s highest lifts and 13,050-feet at the ski area’s peak.

The ski area’s chief operating officer, Alan Henceroth, was quoted in the Fourth of July press release as saying the ski area loves that it is able to open this late in the season and that if A-Basin can offer a good experience this late in the season, the ski area will.

In terms of what terrain will be open on the Fourth of July holiday, A-Basin said in its press release it will have top-to-bottom skiing available serviced by two lifts — Black Mountain Express and the Lenawee Mountain Lift — and several runs. That said, the ski area is encouraging visitors to stay on the upper part of the mountain on terrain accessed by the Lenawee Lift, where coverage is optimal. Come Thursday, there will be no beginner skiing available.

A-Basin is also encouraging skiers and riders to carpool in anticipation of large crowds.

Just like this upcoming weekend’s skiing and riding availability Friday through Sunday, June 28-30, lift-service will be open at The Basin from 8:30 a.m. through 2:30 p.m. Single-day admission will only be available by way of full-day lift tickets, priced at $69. A-Basin will also offer a promotion where if any skier or rider shows a season ski pass that was valid anywhere in the world this past season, they can purchase a July 4 lift ticket for $59. Rentals will also be available, parking spots at The Beach will be available on a first-come, first-served basis and food will be served at The 6th Alley Bar and Grill from 10:30 a.m. through 4 p.m., last call at 3:30 p.m.

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