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Mt. Bachelor sets Black Friday ‘Hopening Day,’ snow or not

If not skiing, other activities planned on 'Black Friday'

(Update: adding video, comments)

BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- The lifts at Mt. Bachelor are moving, the ramps and trails are ready -- but none of that matters, if there isn’t any snow.

The mountain needs a minimum of ten inches in order to open some attractions. Between 18 to 30 inches of snow is needed to fully open the mountain's features.

About two inches of snow has fallen at Bachelor in the last few days. There isn’t enough snow to open, but low temperatures are allowing the resort to lay a foundation of artificial snow. That will mix with real snow to form a firm snowpack.

Typically, in past seasons, Mt. Bachelor opens toward the end of November. According to Leigh Capozzi, director of brand and communications at Mt. Bachelor, opening around Thanksgiving is still possible.

“This is a little bit later than expected, but we have had low snowfall in past years,” Capozzi said Thursday. “Our team is tracking snowfall, tracking the storms coming in, and when the weather allows it, we are blowing snow as much as possible. We are optimistic about a Thanksgiving weekend opening.”

The low snowfall has not had any effect on Mt. Bachelor’s seasonal workforce. According to Capozzi, recent expansions to the mountain will allow for more jobs. She expects more than 900 returning staff members to be working this season.

The warmer temperatures could also affect some businesses that rely on snow, like ski shops. But according to Skjersaa’s owner James Gritter, he hasn’t noticed a difference.

“Actually, November is known as a dry month for Bend,” Gritters said. He called last year’s unexpected snowfall in November “pretty epic.”

Once snow starts falling, Mt. Bachelor will open into late spring in May.

A planned addition that Capozzi is really proud of is a zip-line. The zip-line start at the top of Pine Mountain and have three stages and eventually end at the Little Pine run. It’s planned to open in the Spring of next year. Capozzi hopes closing weekend on Bachelor will have skiing, biking and zip-lining all happening in conjunction.  

Here's Mt. Bachelor's Thursday news release about their 'Hopening Day' activities on Friday, Nov. 29:

MT. BACHELOR ANNOUNCES ‘HOPENING DAY,’ TO FEATURE WOODWARD HIKE PARK, LIVE MUSIC, FAMILY FRIENDLY FUN, FOUR SCAVENGER HUNTS AND WINTER GIVEAWAYS

Nov. 29 ‘Hopening Day’ Community Event Free to Public; Will Feature Family Fun From Noon - 4PM

BEND, Ore., Nov. 21, 2019 — Mt. Bachelor, which boasts natural mountain adventure at the heart of Bend, Oregon culture and a POWDR resort, announced today it will host ‘Hopening Day,’ an event that will bring the community together to come play in the snow at Mt. Bachelor’s on Black Friday, November 29. Join us in hoping for opening day and check conditions page daily for news on lift openings and Nordic conditions. 

Hopening Day is an action-packed afternoon, from 12-4pm, for Bend and the surrounding communities, our passholders, families and guests from afar. Mt. Bachelor will host four zones in the West Village area, including: a Woodward Mountain Park terrain park at the base of West Village Lodge, a Grom Garden, West Village deck activities and the Gravity Sports storefront. While we track snow and announce lift openings, guests are invited to come play in the snow and soak up the early winter season on #HopeningDay. Skiers and riders can session in the Woodward Mountain Park terrain park while others enjoy a Hot Toddy or Hot Chocolate on the West Village Deck, or hang out and take pictures with our Ski Patrol and Avalanche Dogs. We’ve got plenty of winter fun and prizes. This event is free and open to all. 

Hopening Day will run from 12-4pm and Event Details are as follows:

  • Giveaways: Mt. Bachelor will have an onsite photographer and give away a GoPro Hero 7 to a standout skier or snowboarder. There will be additional giveaways for skiers and riders, as well. Mt. Bachelor ski school will also be onsite with Zone Coaches and some of the new Woodward Mountain Park foam tools for learning. 
  • Family Activities: At the base of the West Village Lodge steps we will have a ‘Grom Garden’ set up to greet our Ski Patrol and Mt. Bachelor avalanche dogs, and other FREE family activities include: snow fort play, s’mores fire pits, Make Your Own Coke Float, Winter Face Painting and more.
  • Scavenger hunts: Come join one of our four scavenger hunts: Green Circle for kids 6 and under, Blue Square for 7-10 and Black Diamond for 11-15. All scavenger hunts will be concentrated to the West Village base area with prizes from Mt. Bachelor, Yeti, and Under Armour. The Black Diamond grand prize is a GoPro Hero 7. Be here by 2pm to enjoy these three scavenger hunts! Our 4th scavenger hunt - Double Black Diamond - for anyone 16 and older - will start on the West Village deck, and all contestants will compete to win a set of Nokian Tyres in preparation for the coming winter storms! The Double Black Diamond scavenger hunt starts at 3pm. 
  • Hot treats: For adults 21 and over to enjoy, we’ve got Pray for Snow Pours and Hot Toddies, among other beverages, and live DJ music. 
  • Winter Toast: Our Winter Toast, on West Village Lodge deck, with President and General Manager, John McLeod, will commence at 3:15pm. 

Round out your Hopening Day at Mt. Bachelor with a stop by the Gravity Sports Shop, Central Oregon’s premier outdoor retailer, which will be open from noon - 4pm, and if you haven’t picked up your season pass yet, the Mt. Bachelor inside ticketing office, in the Gateway building, will be open for pass pictures and pick up. In addition, the Mt. Bachelor Nordic Center will host a Nordic Open House, lodge staff will be waxing skis, serving hot cider and cookies. 

Visit Mt. Bachelor conditions page here.

Visit Mt. Bachelor Nordic Center conditions page here.

About Mt. Bachelor

Mt. Bachelor offers 4,318 acres of lift-accessible terrain with 360-degree descents from the 9,065’ volcanic peak, served by 11 lifts, eight of which are high-speed quads. Mt. Bachelor also features five terrain parks, 56 km of groomed cross country trails, snowshoeing, tubing, sled dog rides and summer attractions including downhill mountain biking and whitewater rafting with Sun Country Tours. Mt. Bachelor is part of POWDR, a family owned and operated adventure lifestyle company. 

Central Oregon / Money / Outdoors / Top Stories

Jordan Williams

Jordan Williams is a multimedia journalist for NewsChannel 21. Learn more about Jordan here.

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