SQUAW VALLEY, CA - Skiers and riders got to head down the mountain at Squaw Valley on Thursday. The resort opened for just four hours for a one-day fundraiser that marked the earliest Squaw Valley has opened to the public since it started keeping records in 1960.
At Squaw Valley, it's a bluebird day. And one for the record books.
"Yeah, this is the earliest we've been open to the public since our records dating back to 1960," says Jenny Kendrick, Public Relations manager for Squaw Valley/Alpine Meadows.
But then again, this hasn't been a typical October, thanks to this week's storms.
"Mother Nature just dumped three feet of snow on us out of nowhere," says Kendrick. "So it was fall one day and we woke up and it was January practically today!"
"I've been skiing for 48 years, this is only my second day ever where lifts were served in October," says Rob McClellan, a skier at Squaw Valley. "Doesn't get any better!"
Now, to be clear, Squaw Valley only operated one chairlift (Searchlight) and ran it for four hours (10am - 2pm) on Thursday. But that was enough to satisfy some skiers and riders cravings to hit the slopes.
"Oh, actually, it's pretty sweet," says Nick Coia, a snowboarder. "I know we're only getting off half the mountain, but it's still nice to get out there and enjoy the snow and have a good time."
All of this snow is natural. Squaw Valley hasn't even fired up its snowguns yet. That could happen on Sunday.
The one-day deal at Squaw Valley was actually a fundraiser for Squaw Valley & Alpine Meadows Teams Foundation. Tickets were $20. More than $10,000 was raised for the Foundation.
Squaw Valley will officially open for the season on November 21.
On Friday, Boreal will open to the public.
Some other opening dates:
Northstar-at-Tahoe - November 16
Heavenly - November 16
Kirkwood - November 21
Alpine Meadows - December 7