SUMMIT COUNTY, Colo. — Have you ever wondered if a ski resort has been closed before due to cold weather? We did wonder about that and asked some of them.
We received responses to our questions from spokespeople John Sellers with Loveland, Loryn Roberson with Copper Mountain and Jen Miller with Winter Park.
Some responses have been condensed for clarity.
Question: Have your respective resorts ever closed due to extreme cold?
Copper Mountain: We have closed some of our upper lifts at Copper, due to a combination of wind chill and extreme cold temps. It’s not likely that we’ll close the resort completely, but our leadership team is preparing for all scenarios.
Loveland: There have been times when we have closed some of our upper lifts because of cold temperatures, but I am not aware of any full ski area closures at Loveland strictly due to low temperatures.
Winter Park: No, Winter Park has not shut down for cold.
What precautions are you taking in general and for guests?
Copper Mountain: Communicating preparedness for our guests is key, reminding everyone to layer up and take precautions when enjoying the mountain...to ensure all our guests and employees remain safe during this cold snap.
Loveland: We will keep a close eye on guests to make sure no one is showing signs of frostbite. Encourage guests to dress properly and take breaks to warm up. We will monitor the weather and adjust our operations as necessary to keep everyone safe.
Winter Park: Forecasted temperatures for this week are not as extreme for Winter Park as what’s forecasted for Denver and the Front Range. We are always monitoring the weather, wind, and other factors for safe operations. We are also communicating with resort guests through our Winter Park app, giving tips for managing cold temps while on the mountain, and alerting people of any lift closures should wind force us to shut down a lift.
What are you doing for your workers out in the weather?
Copper Mountain: We ensure frequent breaks are provided along with other tools such as hand/toe warmers, free warm beverages and modified operational plans to deal with any extreme wind chill.
Loveland: We always do, but will continue to keep a close eye on employees and guests alike to make sure no one is showing signs of frostbite. We will rotate employees more frequently so they aren’t exposed to the elements for too long. Additional breaks. Hot drinks. Hand/foot warmers.
Winter Park: Workers whose primary responsibilities require them to work outside are trained and prepared for extreme weather. Even so, all our on-mountain workers have access to indoor shelter while on the job, whether it be a lift hut, a day lodge or ski patrol headquarters.
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