by: John Knicely Updated:
The rain storms that pounded Western Washington over the past few days dumped snow in the high elevations. And Crystal Mountain ski resort took advantage by opening on the earliest date in its 51 year history.
Just three weeks removed from a 90 degree day in Seattle, 75 lucky people skied and snowboarded on fresh powder.
“Who gets to ski on October 1?” asked Lucas Rehring with a huge grin on his face. He was one of the first 75 people to comment on a Facebook post by Crystal Mountain to secure the lift ticket. And he made sure his friends in other ski towns new about it.
“Just got to brag a little bit to friends in Colorado that aren’t blest with our Cascade snow pack,” said Rehring.
Crystal Mountain employees got the idea Monday after storms dumped snow at high elevations.
“We sent a couple people to the mountain top and they came back down with huge smiles on their faces and said it’s doable,” said marketing director Tiana Enger.
The gondola was the only ride up the mountain since the ski lifts have chairs missing for repairs. So after each run the skiers and snowboarders had to hike back to the top.
The earliest opening on record at Crystal Mountain was Nov. 4, 2005, but one of the founders remembers opening on October 10 in the early 70s.
“Typically we’re happy if we’re open by Thanksgiving,” said Enger. “So we’re ecstatic that we’re open today, even if it is for one day.”
Crystal Mountain workers expect warmer temperatures and rain to wash away the snow in the next few days.
“It’ll probably be gone,” said Rehring. “But it’s nice to have this little soft opening.”
There’s no question, the group of dedicated skiers and snowboarders did not let the Oct. 1 gift go to waste.