Grouse Mountain gets early snow, opens for season

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Diehard skiers and boarders took advantage of an early snowfall on Grouse Mountain. Photo by Kristyn Anthony
Skiers and snowboarders took advantage of an early snowfall on Grouse Mountain. Photo by Roberto Teixeira

Reported by Kristyn Anthony

It might be raining in Vancouver, but Grouse Mountain was a winter wonderland Tuesday morning.

Thanks to an early snowfall, the mountain opened for its 90th season last weekend at limited capacity. Three open lifts took skiers and snowboarders up to the three runs in operation Tuesday, where 19 centimetres of fresh snow had fallen in the previous 48 hours.

Jodi Westbury, director of marketing and communications for Grouse Mountain said additional snow in the forecast will allow operations to open even more terrain heading into the holidays.

“What we’re seeing this year is a bit more of a sustained snow-fall so that really bodes well, especially for building up a base for the mountain,” she said.

New advanced run

This year, previously unavailable glade areas are opening for advanced riders looking for fresh powder.

“We have also added a new terrain park called Grouse Woods and it’s Canada’s first natural feature terrain park, on Buckhorn run,” Westbury said.

David Onak took advantage of a day off from high-school to get on the mountain with a group of friends.

“I know there’s a lot of fresh snow so I’m excited to basically just practice snowboarding cause it’s the first time of the year,” he said.

Snow no obstacle for hikers

For Gerry Rahn, Tuesday was an opportunity for a hike in the snow. Rahn runs Grindaholic, an independent community group he founded to get hikers up to Grouse, year round. Rahn, who averages 200 days each year on the mountain, was headed for the BCMC trail.

“Use it or lose it,” he said. “At 62, I don’t dare stop, you’ve got to keep in shape.”

After 20 years exploring the mountain on foot, Hahn said this year he’s strapping on the skis again.

“We’re very fortunate to live here, and I hope I can set an example to a younger generation to get out and stay fit.”

Check out this clip of Voice editor Roberto Teixeira riding the Grouse slopes Tuesday morning:

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