STEAMBOAT SPRINGS, CO-December 4, 2013-Powderhounds are in a heavenly daze this morning in Steamboat as the resort zeros in on 100 inches of Champagne Powder® snow at mid-mountain for the winter and enjoys its first powder day of the season.

“As Steamboat enters the first week of December, the resort is looking more like mid-February than early December,” said Chris Diamond, president and chief operating officer. “Champagne Powder snow always tops the holiday wish list for Steamboat powderhounds and both Mother Nature and Kris Kringle are delivering it in abundance early this season.”

Old Man Winter blew through Steamboat Tuesday night bringing 9 inches of fresh Champagne Powder® snow and single digit temperatures signaling a snowy change to the weather pattern. While snow continues to fall, the resort is reporting a 33-inch base at mid-mountain and 39-inch base at the summit on powder conditions.  So far this season at mid-mountain, Steamboat has seen 40” in October; 47.5” in November; and 9.5” in December for a combined total of 97” (8.08 feet).

A Winter Storm Warning remains in effect until 6pm this evening.  Forecasts call for widespread snow to continue today and into this evening as a cold and vigorous storm system moves across the area with an additional accumulation of 5 to 10 inches expected.  The storm total snow amount is expected to range up to 14 to 24 inches with as much as 36 inches over the Flattop Wilderness Area. Snow remains in the forecast daily through Sunday.

“As this wintry weather pattern shift solidifies, funneling several storms over the coming week to Steamboat, the resort plans to expand terrain and lifts,” continued Diamond. “With the fresh snow last night, continued hard work by resort crews and favorable forecasts, the mountain will serve up fantastic skiing and riding as we head toward the holidays.”

Depending upon weather and mountain conditions, the resort will begin phasing in new terrain and lifts over the coming weeks and anticipates opening the following lifts and associated mountain areas: hike-to access to Pioneer Ridge by Dec. 5th; Preview, Bashor and Elkhead on Dec. 6th; Thunderhead Express on Dec. 11th; Sundown Express, Sunshine Express and South Peak on Dec. 12th; Morningside Park on Dec. 20th; and Pony Express (Pioneer Ridge terrain currently open as hike-to) on Dec. 21st. Elkhead Lift, without Spur Run, Huffman’s or Moonlight, will open Friday, Dec. 6th, as a way to get skiers out of the Priest Creek area from Lower High Noon, Rolex and Westside.

Including the new Pioneer Ridge hike-to terrain, the resort will move to 5 lifts with 83 trails covering 1,228 acres, or nearly 42% of the resort’s terrain, open by tomorrow. In addition, all extreme terrain is currently open including Chutes 1, 2 & 3, Christmas Tree Bowl and North St. Pat’s. As conditions change, lift operations and terrain may vary based on additional snow. A complete list of open mountain trails and lifts is available each morning. 

“With more storms headed towards Steamboat-Ski Town, U.S.A.®, a powder alert is in full force and DEEP SNOW CONDITIONS exist on all parts of the mountain,” said John Kohnke, patrol director. “If skiing and riding in deep snow or near trees, steer clear of tree wells and stay with a partner. Remember; there is always room for a friend on a powder day.”  The avalanche rating for the Steamboat zone is CONSIDERABLE (Level 3) on all aspects and elevations.

Steamboat is serving up heaps of Champagne Powder® snow and package values almost as deep as the snow!  Steamboat’s nonstop flight program offers convenient access to Ski Town, U.S.A.® via nonstop air service from nine major airports on Alaska, American, Delta and United Airlines. Contact Steamboat Central Reservations® to explore travel options or for winter vacation packages including the Champagne Powder® package at www.steamboat.com or 1-800-922-2722.

- Happy Trails®-