More than two feet of natural snow that fell in November has allowed Sunlight Mountain Resort to open early for its 49th season of skiing and snowboarding. Sunlight’s lifts will start turning at 9 a.m. on Friday, Dec. 4, one week ahead of its originally planned opening of Dec. 11.

The ski area will be open through the weekend with nearly 300 skiable acres on an 18 inch base serviced by the Tercero and Segundo lifts. Sunlight will not be open the week of Dec. 7-10, and plans to reopen for the season on Dec. 11.

“The early snow definitely elevated the stoke factor among our avid skiers and riders, our phones and social media channels have been busy with folks anxious to hit the slopes so we couldn’t be more excited to deliver an early start,” said Troy Hawks, Marketing and Sales Director.

 

Skiers and riders at Sunlight will be greeted with a number of improvements for the 2015-16 season including expanded food and beverage concessions, major renovations to the Sunlight Lodge Bed & Breakfast, several on-mountain maintenance projects, and a new, recently-launched website.

Slope-side Food and Beverage

A big renovation to the Out of Bounds Grill in the Sunlight base lodge has transformed it into an open-flow cafeteria featuring a full line-up of made-to-order menu items including Sunlight’s Signature Burger, the infamous house-made mesquite-smoked pork green chili, as well as chicken sandwiches, brats, and homemade soups.

Also new is a renovated outdoor service station located on the west end of Sunlight’s deck. Here skiers and riders will enjoy the convenience of slope-side food and beverage service on the weekends. An added fireplace and overhead canopy make this the perfect après ski spot for basking in the sun while enjoying local musicians. 

The New Sunlight Lodge Bed & Breakfast

For opening weekend, skiers, riders, and football fans can take advantage of appetizer specials on Sunday, Dec. 6 from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. at the newly renovated Sunlight Lodge Bed & Breakfast. The 19-room Sunlight Lodge underwent a major renovation this summer including the addition of more than 2,000 square feet of new wood grain tile flooring and more than 6,000 sq. ft. of new carpeting.

Guests will be greeted at a new custom stone reception desk with granite counter top, and more stone work has been incorporated in the lounge bar and restaurant.  This season the lounge boasts a new menu of delectable après ski entrees including Shepherd’s Pie, chili Macaroni and cheese, and gourmet flame-grilled hamburgers - all prepared by local chef Tim Gomez. The Sunlight lounge offers après ski specials Thursdays thru Saturdays and the Friday Afternoon Club serves up free appetizers from 3-6pm.

Even More On-Mountain Improvements

Sunlight’s on-mountain improvements include a renovated retail outlet in the base lodge, as well as strategical regrading of some its beginner terrain making it easier for those new to the sport to develop their skills. Other maintenance projects include the replacement of the main power feed to the top of the mountain and the Tercero lift received a new paint job.

Sunlight Partners with LiveWell Garfield County on World Record Attempt

Topping the list of events at Sunlight this season is an attempt to establish a new Guinness Book of World Record for the largest beginner ski and snowboard lesson. On Jan. 8, 2016, Sunlight in partnership with LiveWell Garfield County will treat nearly two dozen local students to a free beginner lesson. More than 150 other ski areas across the country will also conduct beginner lessons that day, establishing new records for the largest beginner ski and snowboard lesson taught concurrently at multiple ski areas.

Sunlight Elects New Mini-Mayor

Sunlight officials have named four-year-old Elijah Mattson of Glenwood Springs the resort’s inaugural Mini-Mayor, after his passionate plea for Sunlight to open early for the season. After seeing Mattson’s spirited campaign on social media, officials said they decided to elect him to the office of Mini-Mayor “to give voice to a previously unrepresented yet vital young demographic of skiers and riders.”

WATCH Elijah Mattson campaign for an early opening.  

Mattson will keep his constituency updated on breaking news and events by issuing regular press statements via social media throughout the season. The office of Mini-Mayor holds a one year term. Campaigning for Mini-Mayor 2016 begins next September with voting in October.

About Sunlight Mountain Resort

There’s so much to smile about at Sunlight Mountain! With more than 680 skiable acres and 2,000 vertical feet, Sunlight offers big skiing at an affordable price. Visit us at sunlightmtn.com.