Frigid Temperatures Have Delayed the Opening of Snowbowl - News, Sports and Weather

Frigid Temperatures Have Delayed the Opening of Snowbowl

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These cold temperatures kept skiers and snowboarders off the slopes at Snowbowl, after officials postponed opening day this morning.

Emily Foster drove up there today, and found out why mountain managers thought it was just too risky.


Snowbowl mountain manager, Pat Mckay, says he got a rude awakening at 5:30 this morning, when he caught sight of the thermometer while starting up the chairlifts. Mckay explains, "The temperature itself was about 10-12 degrees below, with it had to be at least a 20-mile-per-hour wind or more."

Mckay says that put the temperature at about 40 below zero at the top of the mountain, conditions Mckay believes would cause too many hazards at a commercial ski area.

In addition to this, Mckay says frigid temps can freeze fluids in their heavy machinery. This slows down their ability to groom runs, repair equipment and even respond to emergencies.

Emily Foster's stand up: "Snowbowl officials say sub zero temperatures can even affect the steel part of the chairlift machinery, meaning people riding up the mountain could get stranded, which causes concerns about hypothermia and frostbite."

Mckay says they've turned nearly three million gallons of water into man-made snow for the mountain and their base is now at about one and a half feet.

At Snowbowl near Missoula, Emily Foster, ABC/Fox Montana.

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