Masks up! Colorado ski resorts are moving ahead as state, counties and businesses restrict access

Jason Blevins
The Colorado Sun

VAIL — The lift operator in the maze at Vail Village’s Gondola One tilts his head back and hollers: “Masks up please!”

There are no unmasked skiers in the line, but maybe some masks have slipped below noses. It’s the second day of operations at Vail ski area — a busy Saturday — and skiers are filling the mountain through three entry points.

“The compliance I’m seeing is probably 75% and the ski area employees are very adamant. They are yelling at people who don’t have their mask up,” said longtime Vail skier Charlie Vogel, who skis just about every day. “I heard one employee yell ‘Put your mask up, save the season.’ That’s a good way to look at this.”

Masks on all faces. Social distancing. Lots of warning signs, hand washing, worker training and remote transactions. Not much of anything will happen indoors. Welcome to the weirdest ski season ever.

The snow is falling and the lifts are turning. Even as the state and counties impose increasingly strict limitations and regulations on private businesses, Colorado’s roughly $5 billion ski industry is moving forward without delay.

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