ASHLAND, Ore. — The lifts have been up and running since Thursday and hundreds of skiers have come out to enjoy an early opening weekend on Mt. Ashland. Officials say they have sixteen runs groomed and conditions are above what is normally seen this time of year.
“Right now we have late January coverage this early in December,” said Development Director for Mount Ashland, Rick Saul.
Saul says nearly 700 skiers came out on the first day and another 700 came through on Saturday.
“We’re very encouraged by the revenue for opening weekend,” said Saul.
The business impact skiers bring goes far beyond the slopes. Manager of Callhan’s Mountain Lodge, Ron Bergquist, says his business sees a boost every year when the slopes open up.
“We’ve been getting people everyday here from the ski area,” said Bergquist, “We get the people coming down from the mountain, they’re all excited, they’ve had great days and they’re excited about going back.”
Bergquist says last season’s low snowfall lead to one of the worst months of January in years. This year, however, Bergquist says The excitement and snow is back and he expects a great year.
Mt. Ashland officials say they could be seeing more California visitors than usual because the slopes on Mt. Shasta have yet to open.