Time Machine: 10 years ago, Vail Mountain reopens after closing | VailDaily.com

Time Machine: 10 years ago, Vail Mountain reopens after closing

Garrett Fletcher enjoys deep snow at Beaver Creek on April 16, 2013. After 2 feet of snow fell following the closing of the mountain on April 14, 2013, Vail Mountain announced it would reopen its lifts for April 19-21, 2013.
Vail Daily archive/Justin McCarty

10 years ago

April 19-21, 2013

Vail Mountain reopened for a weekend after closing on Sunday, April 14, 2013.

A massive storm system began hitting the area on Sunday, dropping more than a foot of snow on Vail Mountain during the Closing Day festivities, and snow continued to fall on Monday, closing Interstate 70 over Vail Pass for much of the day.

“Vail Pass had been burned under 2 feet of snow in the 24 hours prior to 2 p.m. Monday,” the Vail Daily reported. “In the mountains, snow fell at a rate of close to 2 inches per hour at times Monday … Tuesday will see less snow before another storm rolls through Tuesday and Wednesday.”

On Tuesday, Vail Mountain announced it would extend its 50th anniversary season by three days, opening Friday to Sunday.

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“We were up yesterday for our employee (ski) day and it was absolutely incredible and then when it just kept snowing as hard as it did all day long – we started talking about ‘we should do this'” Vail Mountain Chief Operating Officer Chris Jarnot was quoted saying in a Vail Daily story on Tuesday. “This is why all of us are here – (the snow’s) too good not to take advantage of and share. We talked about it last night and pulled the trigger.”

20 years ago

April 20, 2003

Vail Mountain ended its 40th anniversary season, described as a “three snorkel” season by the Vail Daily.

“The season began with a bunch of big dumps, inspiring Vail Mountain to open itself a week early,” the Vail Daily reported. “The ultra-popular Blue Sky Basin opening on Thanksgiving – it’s earliest opening ever. The big snows dropped by around Christmas and New Year’s Day and returned for good in February and March, when it seemed there were non-stop powder days for a while.”

The Daily quoted Vail skier Nate Smith in describing the conditions.

“Let’s put it this way,” Smith said. “I used a snorkel on three days.”

Vail reported a total of 386 inches in 2002-03, and the average to date at that point was 339 inches, the Daily reported.

30 years ago

April 23, 1993

Vandals at Beaver Creek were still at large after making barbed wire booby traps around arched trees near the Gold Dust run, the Vail Trail reported.

The arched trees were used by snowboarders for log sliding and the barbed wire “was wrapped in such a way that it would damage the boards, and possible the boarders, as they went across the trees.”

There were no suspects in the crime, said Eagle County Sheriff A.J. Johnson, and Beaver Creek Director of Mountain Operations Mike Beckley said he did not think it was done by anyone who worked on the mountain.

“Obviously somebody has seen them do this and decided to do something to stop it,” Johnson said. “This was a dangerous situation for the snowboarders.”

40 years ago

April 22, 1983

Vail began the process of making a bid to host the World Alpine Ski Championships, the Vail Trail reported.

Vail Mountain was suggested as a possible host for the 1987 World Alpine Ski Championships after Aspen had pulled its bid. Vail Associates Marketing Vice President John Horan-Kates sprung to action when he learned Aspen was no longer interested.

Horan-Kates, Bill Brown and John Garnsey made plans to travel to Sydney, Australia for the FIS Congress, where they planned to aid the United State Ski and Snowboard Association in a bid to bring the World Championships to the U.S. for the first time since 1950, the Vail Trail reported, “and to pitch Vail to the FIS Council with the hope that the World Championships will take place here in late January or early February, 1987.”

50 years ago

April 20, 1973

Vail Mountain announced it would reopen on Monday, April 23 for a “locals only” ski day, the Vail Daily reported. The mountain had planned to close to the general public following the ski day on Sunday, April 22, but good ski conditions promoted the one-day extension, said Dick Peterson, President of Vail Associates.

“Due to the exceptionally good spring skiing conditions and in appreciation of a job well done this season by all Vail employees, we will operate Gondola I, Chair 4, and associated trails for ‘locals only’ on Monday, April 23;” Dick Peterson, President of Vail Associates, Inc. announced. “Hours of operation, courtesy of our mountain department, will be from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. There will be no food service so bring your own lunch. Happy skiing!”

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