Author Archives: Rich Burkley

About Rich Burkley

VP, Mountain Operations for Aspen Skiing Company

Dear all,

As we approach our busiest weeks of the season the mountains are in beautiful shape to welcome holiday guests.

Buttermilk is 100% open with the exception of the terrain park and pipe.  Everything on Aspen Mountain is open with the sole exception of Niagra.  Across the valley at Aspen Highlands a bunch of the Bowl opened including Boxcar, Gramsters, Mosh Pit, Y1, Y2, and Y12.  Additionally, the frontside lower mountain blacks opened including Golden Horn Woods, Epicure and Audacious.

On Snowmass upper Green Cabin, Baby Ruth Glades and Powderhorn enter the mix.  It was a tad breezy above 11,000 feet the past few days and we need another foot and a half to open the remaining big pods of terrain in the Cirque and Rocky Mountain High.  Across the four mountains all lifts are spinning with the exception of the Cirque. The gift of snow is forecast on Christmas and through the weekend.

On Buttermilk the S3 Park is open and Greg Boyd (BM Terrain Parks) has several features on Teaser.  On Snowmass the push in Makaha and Lowdown Parks has started and Yannick Rioux (SM Terrain Parks) anticipates opening the parks the day after Christmas.  Snowmaking continues and the push for the pipes begins in earnest later this week.  We anticipate opening the pipes towards the end of the first week in January.

Thank you all in advance for making this a memorable Holiday season for all of our visitors.  I wish each of you a safe and happy New Year.


Dear all:

The understated Murray Cunningham (Powder Tours) describes this next storm cycle as “promising”.  On Saturday (20th) we’ll open another large swath of terrain as we push to 100% open.

Aspen Mountain already approaches 90% open and patrol is working on last pockets of the Glades and Jackpot.  At Highlands Child’s Play and Moment Chutes turn green. The Tiehack Chair enters service for the season providing access to lower portions of Racer’s Edge, Javeline, Tiehack Trail and Sterner’s Gulch.  Another free parking lot opens at the base of Tiehack.

In Snowmass Jamie Trubey (SM Lifts) and the crew start spinning Two Creeks, Campground and Coney Glade Chairs.  Craig Chalmers (SM Patrol) and the patrol will open Burnt Mountain Glades, Long Shot, East Branch, Creekside and Cascade.  Over on the west side Slot, Campground and Bearclaw enter the mix.  Amy Fischer (Two Creeks Café) will keep you fed as you lap Burnt Mountain (try the Cubano) and the Two Creeks parking lots give our guests another option to access the hill.

Friday night (19th) Snowmass hosts the first Ullr Night of the season and the debut of the new tubing venue.

The season started strong, then took a two week holiday and now is back on track.  However, the warm spell cost us time with our snowmaking efforts and that has impacted our parks and pipes.  Sadly, we won’t have a pipe in our resort for the Holidays.  Snowmaking crews on Buttermilk and Snowmass are pushing hard, but these are big builds and we hope to have a pipe cut the first week of January.