Area Ski Resorts Prepare to Open Next Week - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe News Weather, Video -

Area Ski Resorts Prepare to Open Next Week

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It's been a dry November, so far, but that's not discouraging local ski resorts. 

A late October storm helped out the resorts, but snow has been hard to come by ever since.

So, they have been taking that job into their own hands, and making their own snow.

Mt. Rose Ski Tahoe is using about a dozen snow-making machines to put a coat of snow down on the ground, turning millions of gallons of water into ski runs.

"It's our insurance policy," Mike Pierce, Mt. Rose Marketing Director said. "We would rather not open on just snow-making. We always want Mother Nature to help. But that's why not only Mt. Rose, but many of the resorts, in the Sierra have this capability. So, we can start the season off like we need to."

The ideal temperature for making snow is about 28 degrees.

But they can make snow, all the way up to 33 degrees, depending on humidity.

"Our goal is to be open from the top so that if people are going to come up for that early season experience, they're going to get a full top-to-bottom run," Pierce said.

Resorts like Northstar California and Heavenly are also getting ready for opening day, setting up lockers and tables, getting the restaurants ready to go, and also making snow.

Northstar Communications Coordinator Brooke Rose says that despite the lack of natural snow, you might be surprised at the conditions when they open, next Friday.

"Early season conditions are great," Rose said. "Even if it's manmade snow, it's beautiful out. I would rather be skiing with a sweater on than I would with my whole puffy and having to go in and recover every once in awhile."

Both resorts say season ticket sales are strong.

Passes are on sale at Northstar, Heavenly, and Kirkwood until November 24.

And while there's still a week before opening day, skiers say that's plenty of time for a good storm to come in and give the resorts a boost.

"That's just such a great way to start off the season," Rose said. "I think everyone gets really excited when they see the new snow come down."

"Good front out of the Pacific can open a significant chunk of the mountain, just like that," Pierce said. "We can go from relatively baron slopes to full white slopes with just one big storm."

And that's exactly what ski resorts are hoping for. Just one big storm to drop snow all over the mountain, just in time for Thanksgiving.

Written by Paul Nelson
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