Up North: Chester Bowl feeling effects of unusual winter weather
Just days ago, Chester Bowl was full of excitement, winter sports athletes, and of course, snow. The opening of the Alpine hill, which can handle over 960 skiers and snowboarders per hour, should be filled just days after opening.
However, the unseasonably warm temperatures this winter have caused chaos for places like Chester Bowl, who thrives off the winter weather that Duluth offers.
While temperatures are increasing, the time for winter sports is decreasing.
“This storm system has been rough on Chester on top of an already warm winter,” said Chester Bowl Executive Director, Dave Schaeffer. “Although we were able to open before the holiday break, we are now closed. Our snow conditions just don’t support being open for operations at this time.”
This week was supposed to mark the beginning of Chester Bowl’s youth ski and snowboarding lessons.
Usually at this time of the year, the hill is packed with those wanting to get out and hit the slopes, regardless of age. However, this year just hasn’t been the same.
“If we have a busy day with lessons, we could have hundreds of people here over the course of the day,” said Schaeffer. “I can’t wait to get back there sometime soon.”
Despite the temporary closure, there’s no sign of giving up on the season.
“We haven’t given up hope on winter. We know we’ll get back out there and we’re just trying to make it happen as soon as we can. It’s just a matter of time before we’ll be able to open again. We’re not ready to determine exactly when that will be, but winter is long, sometimes longer than some folks would like. We know there’s more than enough time to get people back out there,” concluded Schaeffer.