16 November 2016 — Big news in Tahoe region, Placer County CA supervisors voted 4:1 in favor of expansion at Squaw Valley amid widespread opposition from residents during an all-day hearing yesterday. Squaw planning hotels & condos totalling 1,500 rooms, 300,000 square feet of commercial space and a 90,000 sq ft adventure center somewhere mid mountain. Squaw CEO Andy Wirth sez ” [approval] will allow us to compete in an industry that is hypercompetitive.” Resort representatives tried to reassure the opposition that most of the construction will be where existing parking lots are located, and it will have minimal impact on surrounding environs…Great news for Ohioans, Boston Mills ramped up the guns yesterday for some early season testing, means the real thing isn’t too far off…more New England resorts moving opening day further down the calendar; biggies Stowe VT and Loon NH now talking November 23rd with the gloomy “weather permitting” disclaimer…news is much worse in Colorado, Vail is now hoping for Thanksgiving but unless they get some snow and get it fast, that ain’t gonna happen. Back on the other side of the divide, Eldora has pushed opening day off until next week as well. They have a few residual piles but also need the weather to change drastically and soon. Rumor is Purgatory plans to open Saturday, but I don’t see that happening. Hope I’m proven wrong…on the other hand, Breckenridge snowmakers working like maniacs, they’ve got a usable surface to the base of Peak 8 so I think they may spin ’em Saturday (19th) like they’ve been saying. It’ll be a white ribbon of death, but it’s skiing…For all the glum faces and warm weather in New England, probably a good time to report on some happy news for the upcoming season, a little nordie love here: Jackson XC NH is adding 6k to their trail network…things continuing as planned for the long-awaited reopening of Laurel Mountain in southwest Pennsy; a completely new snowmaking system tops the list. They’ve also fixed the road, spiffed up the lodge and regraded a few trails in a joint effort by the state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and Seven Springs. Most important sign is, they’re selling season passes …FIS World Cup mens speed events scheduled for Lake Louise next week have been cancelled; ain’t got enough snow.
Photo above courtesy Jackson XC, Jackson NH