Snow, avalanche concerns close Arapahoe Basin, Monarch Mountain Ski Area, hamper others

Posted at 12:44 PM, Jan 10, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-11 00:28:31-05

DENVER -- Snow and avalanche control work have closed two Colorado ski areas and reduced visits at other areas.

Arapahoe Basin

Arapahoe Basin announced it would close down its skier operations on Tuesday staring at 1 p.m. due to concerns of avalanches on Loveland Pass. 

The ski resort said it would be sorting out how it would handle refunds for those who attempted to ski there Tuesday. 

The resort is just one of many with concerns over the rapid accumulation of snow. 

It said Tuesday afternoon that a determination of whether or not it would open Wednesday would be made early Wednesday morning. CDOT crews plan to continue avalanche mitigation on nearby Loveland Pass Wednesday.

Monarch Mountain

Monarch Mountain was closed Tuesday,

"CDOT has been doing avalanche mitigation all night on U.S. 50, so we weren't able to get Monarch crews up to the mountain today," Monarch Mountain spokeswoman Chelsea Coe told Denver7. "When CDOT closes U.S. 50, we cant get anybody up there."

Coe said snow was up to the bottom of the lift ticket windows and crews will have to dig out the lodge.

Monarch had 20 inches of new snow as of 7 a.m. Tuesday.  The ski area has received 68 inches of snow in the last week.

"We're expecting an epic powder day tomorrow," Coe said.

Winter Park

Berthoud Pass, one of the main access points for Winter Park Ski Resort, closed early Tuesday morning.

"It's a little quiet around here," Winter park Ski Resort spokesman Steve Hurlbert told Denver7.

However, Hurlbert said numbers are only down about 25 percent.

He said when the pass is closed, a lot of locals take a ski day.

Hurlbert says Winter Park Ski Resort has never closed, but has shut down some of the higher lifts on windy days.

Hurlbert said Winter Park once got 43.5 inches in a single 24 hour period. That was back in March 2003.

Crested Butte

Crested Butte Mountain Resort closed Monday because of deep snow.

"Due to the safety concern for our guests and employees, we are closing all lift operations for the day," Crested Butte officials wrote on Facebook.

"The amount of heavy snow in a short period of time plus increasing winds and avalanche concerns led to the closure," officials explained Tuesday.

Crested Butte reported 30 inches of snow in 48 hours as of Tuesday morning.

"There really is so much snow out there," Crested Butte officials said.


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