Purgatory Resort’s season will end with one last memorable moment to conclude a winter filled with powder days, a high school state championship event and countless memories made.
Skiers and snowboarders will ride the Purgatory main lift, the six-person Purgatory Village Express, in the month of May for the first time in the 53-year history of the ski area Saturday. The lift will turn from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. with roughly 40% of the mountain open along with the three terrain parks: Angels Thread, The Bank and Pitchfork.
“Ski patrol just confirmed our mid-mountain base depth is 50 inches – pretty amazing for the first weekend in May,” said Stacey Glaser, the mountain’s marketing director. “This week we got three inches, which put our season total to 362 inches. This week’s storm just bumped us over the 30-foot mark for the season.”
While the lift hasn’t been open to the public since last Saturday, that hasn’t stopped some from hiking up the slopes to get a few turns in during the latest storm. Mark Daley, a multi-time national champion snowboarder, was one of those who have already made turns at Purgatory this May.
“Snow conditions are incredible,” Daley said Thursday. “The parks are ready to go. The enthusiasm from all the employees is so strong. ... (Wednesday) I started my hike up, didn’t even know what month it was. May didn’t even come to mind, it was snowing for crying out loud. It was incredible. May, normally I’d be mountain biking. Longest season, best season I’ve ever had.”
Along with the skiing, there will be a party in the beach area with DJ Noonz playing music. Costumes are highly encouraged, and Purgatory will take a group photo with anyone who wants to join in at 12:30 p.m. on the beach. A costume parade will follow at the top of the Paradise run.
Single-day tickets for adults age 18-69 will cost $49. Teens age 13-17 will cost $37. Kids between the ages of 11-12 will cost $32. Seniors between the age of 65-79 will cost $39, while kids 10-and-younger are free along with seniors over the age of 80.
“This winter will go down in history as the third snowiest on record,” Glaser said. “The other two times we eclipsed 400 inches. We saw over 100 inches in March alone, and that hasn’t happened in 40 years.”