Fresh powder stashes waiting in the trees, groomers in good shape, according Alan Henceroth’s A-Basin blog
By Bob Berwyn
SUMMIT COUNTY — It’s been a while coming, but A-Basin finally has enough snow to open parts of Montezuma Bowl for skiing. The ski area announced it will open 17 trails, covering about 200 acres of groomed terrain, chutes and trees this coming Wednesday, Feb. 24.
Montezuma Bowl opened in January 2008, increasing A-Basin’s skiable terrain by 80 percent. The 400-acre addition was the largest terrain in the country during the 2007-2008 season and helped A-Basin run up a string of seasons with record and near-record skier visits.
A-Basin chief Alan Henceroth said in his blog that the recent snow of the past week has really helped A-Basin conditions. He said a big chunk of Montezuma Bowl will, from Bierstadt on the east side to Long Chute on the west end of the bowl will open. Here’s a link to the ‘Zuma Bowl trail map.
“I have spent most of the last three days with our mountain operations staff skiing and working back there. This is Zuma’s third season and it might be the best opening yet,” Henceroth wrote in in his blog.
Based on his personal reconnaissance, he also offered a few hints on where the best snow might be. New snow fences have helped A-Basin crews capture snow and stack it up on Columbine/Shining Light or Upper Larkspur/Independence. Henceroth said the trails coming off the top are simply groomed to perfection.
As far as steeper terrain, Henceroth said Long Chute is awesome. “Most of the ground surface in Long Chute is soft tundra and the skiing is always good in there. It is a long leg burner. And keep your eyes on Max, Groswold, and Durrance. I am not sure if those will open Wednesday, but there aren’t far behind.”
Henceroth also said there’s enough snow in the gladed terrain of the 14ers for some good adventure skiing — especially after trail crews spent some time in the area last summer cleaning out out some of the deadfall to improve the lines. Check out the ‘Zuma Bowl trail map to plan your day.