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Wintry weather has resorts looking to open for season | Education

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Wintry weather has resorts looking to open for season

SIERRA NEVADA, CA - On-and-off flurries greeted visitors during Mammoth Mountain's opening day.

Skiers and snowboarders were able to play in man-made snow mixed in with the real stuff that fell last month.

Further north, in the Tahoe area, opening day will have to wait a little longer.

The first storm that blew through last month gave people a teaser with a couple of resorts opening for a few days but then balmy weather set in.

"We suspended operations," said Boreal Mountain Resort spokesman Jon Slaughter. "We had some really warm conditions. We almost opened know(ing) that was going to be the case."

Last year, the early snow came, but more didn't come until January. No one wants a repeat.

Now a new storm is blowing through, giving resorts some hope they can open for good this season.

The snow-making machines are fired up, employees are busy stocking up on wood and stores are putting out new merchandise for customers eager to update their winter wardrobe.

"It's good to have the door open, the storm door open as opposed to last year," said Lincoln Kauffman with Donner Ski Ranch. "Get the jet stream down, get the moisture on the hillside, bring down the temperatures and get ready for a good season."

Boreal is hoping it stays cold enough through the next couple of days so that they can re-open on Saturday.

"It's great for when we make snow, especially because it's really cold temperatures. So our snow guns are running at the max," Slaughter said.

"We have high hopes this is going to be a good year," Kauffman said.

Nannette Miranda

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