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Cooper News

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front side of the mountain


Well, the dreaded pre-season drought that seems to come along every 3-4 years, is once again creating a challenge to our opening day plans!  Based on current forecasts, we have moved our tentative opening day to Friday the 10th.   While we have decent snow cover on most of the mountain, the dry temperate days that are in the forecast for the rest of this week will play havoc with lift loading areas.  The good news is… 

uphill skier


At Cooper we know how many of you enjoy uphilling, and we’ve been happy to provide that access over the years. In fact, Cooper was pleased to be one of the only Colorado ski resorts who continued to allow unlimited uphill access last ski season after the resorts were forced to shut down in March. We had to place some new restrictions on uphill access for this ski season due to COVID-19 operating adjustments. However, with a week of operation under our belts, we’re now able to expand free access outside of the operating day….

Snowboarder with a mask on


Weather permitting, we are about four weeks from “liftoff” for the 20/21 Cooper Ski Season!  This year we have chosen to open on Wednesday December 9th, providing our staff with a few “slower” days to tune-up our latest operating procedures and facility modifications before hitting the busy weekend scenario.

This season you will encounter many new and unfamiliar experiences here at Ski Cooper in response to the “virus” and its impacts.  Here are a few highlights ……

Light layer of fresh snow on Cooper

October 13, 2020

The golden Aspen leaves of autumn have mostly fallen, there’s a chill in the air and a coating of fresh snow on the slopes. It’s that time of year when anticipation for the upcoming ski season overtakes you, making it hard to focus on other things…….in my case, akin to the Christmas Eve “butterflies” when I was a kid! There is however a hint of disquiet surrounding this ski season due to the seemingly endless effects of COVID-19……

Summer flowers at Cooper

June 2, 2020

Well, I just flipped the calendar to the new month and hopefully to a new page in our quest to move forward, as we prepare with great hope and anticipation for the 2020/21 ski season here at Cooper.  We have made it through the last few months, taking care of each other, while maintaining a positive outlook toward the future…..

empty slopes
Ski Resort Closure Extended

March 19, 2020

Well, to say that this has been an interesting week in the world would be an extreme understatement.  We are all experiencing mandated alterations of our daily lives and routines, which are unprecedented in our lifetimes. 

As you have most likely heard, Governor Polis has extended the Executive Order mandating the closure of all Colorado ski areas thru April 6th…… 

empty chairlift
Governor Mandates the Closure of All Ski Resorts

March 14, 2020

At the direction of the Governor’s Office and in concert with all other Colorado Ski Resorts, Ski Cooper will be closed beginning tomorrow, Sunday March 15 for an initial period ending Sunday March 22.  During this time many factors will be assessed in determining if the closure should be extended beyond March 22…..

Covid-19 guidelines
Covid-19 Guidelines for your Visit to Cooper

March 13, 2020

As we are all aware, the Coronavirus is an evolving public health issue affecting people globally and close to home.  Ski Cooper wants to assure you that your health, safety and well-being are, as always, of the utmost importance to us.

We are closely monitoring this situation and following guidelines from federal, state and local health officials…..

trail signs in Tennessee Creek Basin
Tennessee Creek Basin is Open – Use Caution

January 10, 2020

As you have probably heard by now, the new Tennessee Creek Basin Area with its Little Horse T-Bar is up and running!  After considering all the details and coordination involved in opening what is basically an entire new Ski Area, we opted to perform a “soft opening” so we could assess and address any challenges and deal with them without disrupting the days with huge numbers of Cooper skiers.  Well, after a week of operation, we identified a few kinks which we addressed and now feel solid about the TCB and Little Horse…..

new lift towers
RFID Card Update and New Terrain Opening Soon

December 27, 2019

Before the update on the Tennessee Creek Basin Area, I must first address another new facet at Cooper – our new RFID selling and access system.  I would like to begin by extending my deepest apologies to those of you who were upset with the long Ticket Line wait time.  More importantly, I would like to thank those of you who were exceptionally patient, kind and understanding as we struggled to work some bugs out of the system….. 

new lift tower
Finishing Touches on Tennessee Creek Basin

November 15, 2019

The sight of shiny new lift towers now standing erect from top to bottom on Maverick (the lift line trail) is truly awe-inspiring to me!  It is gratifying to see the diligent work of so many people taking shape to become part of a new era here at Cooper, and eventually part of its ever evolving heritage to future generations.

Work now continues with the stringing of the haul rope and communications cable, which carries the signals controlling the lift and senses any issues that may occur along the tower line….. 

new lift towers
Tower Tubes, Cross-Arms, Sheaves & Much More!

November 7, 2019

Activities in the parking lot resemble a huge erector set project……..tower tubes, cross-arms, sheaves, ladders, deflectors, etc., all being bolted together and prepared for helicopter transport next week!  Some of the Drive Terminal components are beyond the lift capacity of the helicopter (the price of being located at extreme elevation) and will be hauled to the top of the mountain via snow cat-assisted rough terrain forklift.  Fortunately, Old Man Winter has backed off at just the right time to allow for this phase on the project to be completed….. 

tower tubes
Lift Construction Continues in the Snow

October 30, 2019

As you probably know, Old Man Winter arrived a bit early this year here at the mountain.  Seeing appreciable snow this early is always exciting; however, it makes for a challenging environment in which to install a ski lift and prepare a new pod of ski trails.  Despite the challenging—yet welcome—snowfall, things continue to move forward…..

Tennessee Creek Basin Sketch
New England-style, Glade-style and Natural Tree Skiing in TCB

September 6, 2019

Wow, time is flying……….and next week concrete will also be flying!  All Lift Terminal and Tower foundations for the Little Horse T-Bar have been formed and reinforced and are now fully prepared for the arrival of helicopter-delivered concrete.  We will have videos and pictures of that action posted sometime later next week…..

clear cut terrain
Tennessee Creek Basin On-Schedule

August 7, 2019

Things continue to progress on-schedule in the new “Tennessee Creek Basin” Improvement Area at Cooper!  All larger trees that were felled have been processed and transported from the parking lot staging area.  Smaller trees have been cut up and spread on the forest floor in what is referred to as “Lop and Scatter,” which ensures a supply of nutrients for the soil in the cutting area.  We were very careful in selecting tree-cutting and removal methods…..

Way Back Project Map
The Way Back Project Takes Shape

July 30, 2019

There is a buzz of excitement in the air at Ski Cooper!  The Way Back Project, culminating in the creation of our new skiing terrain in the “Tennessee Creek Basin,” is taking shape before our eyes.

As a long-time veteran of the Ski Resort Industry, I have been around and involved in my fair share of development and expansion projects, both small and large.  While all have been fun and interesting, none has created the sheer thrill and sense of anticipation that I have felt with this one!….