It's the day avid snow skiing enthusiasts have salivated over for months.
In what will be an early Christmas present for skiers, Blue Mountain Ski Area will open its slopes at 8:30 a.m. tomorrow for the 2010-11 winter season.
Marketing director Heidi Lutz said the ski area has met its targeted opening date several weeks after it first began snowmaking on Nov. 26.
"We could not be more excited to open for the 2010-2011 winter season," Lutz said. "Between the addition of three new trails, all the amazing Summit Lodge renovations, and mountain upgrades, we are ready for the best season ever."
Lutz cited the large renovation to the Summit Courtyard, as well as Pioneer Pass, an additional learning trail that will be utilized by the ski area's Learning Center to help children ages-12-and-under learn skills and gain confidence, as several new attractions.
In an effort to improve its snowmaking, Lutz said the ski area has increased its automated snowmaking system along with adding high efficiency guns. Blue Mountain has automated two trails, similar to Paradise, with the ability now to lay down tons of snow, faster than ever, and has also added five fan guns, she said.
The ski area has also restructured its Summit ticket office to improve its ticket selling ability, and has added more windows for added speed and convenience, Lutz said. It has also made the line streamlined with one entry point, she said.
In addition, Lutz said Blue Mountain has expanded its Summit rental shop and tuning area to increase traffic flow through the rental shop. As a result, it will be able to accommodate more guests and keep the lines inside, she said.
The ski area will also sport a new, state-of-the-art Montana Challenge MAX automated ski and snowboard tuning machine, Lutz said, and added it's the first and currently only shop in the country to operate the Challenge MAX.
Lutz said Blue's Passport uses Radio Frequency Identification technology, which uses radio waves to identity objects. Tied into its passport product, Lutz said this year all ticket scanning will be completed at the lifts.
Thanks to hands-free access, guests can spend less time in lines and more time enjoying the resort, Lutz said.
Also, Lutz said above the new tuning area is a brand new 46-by-38-foot deck, which will allow guests to enjoy the outdoors without having to leave the lodge.
In addition, Blue's Learning Center – formerly Ski School – now has a brand new expanded area, she said.