LAS VEGAS (KSNV & MyNews3) -- The Las Vegas Ski and Snowboard Resort is getting ready for its big opening Friday, as it always opens each year around Thanksgiving time. And this year is extra special as it commemorates 50 years. However some snow lovers are trying to get in a little early.
Those snow covered slopes can be tempting. The resort’s general manager Kevin Stickelman knows all too well. People have been sneaking to have some fun sledding or other snow action.
“It's always challenging up here right outside of Las Vegas, whenever there is snow on the ground people want to come up and sled and have snowball fights and build snowmen,” Stickelman said.
This has actually become a dangerous situation and through the U.S. Forest Service, the resort is able to shut down the road leading up to the recreational property.
Patrols are out preparing for Friday’s opening, and lots of snow machines are all over the property making it an unsafe situation.
“We don't have a ski patrol on staff to respond to emergencies. Our patrollers are out working on boundary ropes. If somebody were to get hurt the response time up here is over an hour from Vegas without our emergency response personnel standing by,” Stickelman said.
All this activity leads up to Friday. The resort will unveil lots of expansion from a new longer and more efficient ski lift with seats for four, to double the trails: 16 to now 30.
“The Forest Service has worked along with us and we cleared out some overgrown forest area and we've also cleared some trails that were previously there and we've uncovered some old roads, logging roads,” said John Morelli, the resort’s Director of Business Development.
Under a master plan, there have been many changes from a renovated restaurant with healthier menu choices to the resort running heavily on solar power during the off-season. This excitement surrounds 50 years, but there are many plans to keep growing as this resort looks to the future of snow sports in the Las Vegas Valley.