Alyeska Ski Resort and Hilltop Ski Area will open this week, with limited terrain available to skiers and snowboarders at both areas.
At Alyeska, there will be limited opening for season pass holders Thursday from noon to 4 p.m. On Friday, the mountain opens to everyone beginning at 10:30 a.m.
“It should be limited terrain, and early season conditions will exist,” said Ben Napolitano, the director of marketing at the Girdwood ski area.
The best conditions are at the top of the mountain, he said. According to the ski area’s online snow report, the top of the Glacier Bowl Express has 42 inches of snow, mid-mountain has 17 inches and the base has one inch.
Friday’s official hours of operations are 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Chair 6 operations are dictated by daylight, so that lift will stop running around 4 or 4:30 p.m., Napolitano said.
At Hilltop, the Caribou run will be open from top to bottom, with more terrain opening as conditions permit, according to general manager Trevor Bird.
“We were ready to go on Monday and then of course we had the hurricane come through,” Bird said. “We wanted to let the run rest for two days to let the water drain. Last week was key for us because we were able to blow a lot of snow.”
The South Anchorage ski hill will be open from 3-8 p.m. Thursday and Friday, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.
Hilltop has big plans for the night of the solstice on Saturday, Dec. 21. From 5-8 p.m., there will be a variety of events including a torchlight parade, fireworks, an appearance by Santa Claus, a fire pit and refreshments.
At Arctic Valley Ski Area, conditions aren’t suitable yet for skiers and snowboarders, but the tubing park opened last weekend. It’s open Wednesday through Sunday through the winter with multiple sessions available each day.
Check Arctic Valley’s website before heading there — Sunday’s tubing sessions were canceled because Arctic Valley Road was too icy for travel.