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Whitewater Ski Resort opening for the season

Parking problems at Whitewater Ski Resort should hopefully be a thing of the past.

The hill near Nelson, which opens for the season today, has expanded one of its parking lots by 15 per cent.

General manager Rebeckah Hornung said they aren’t sure exactly how many cars will fit, but the expect it to remove one occasional frustration.

“There were a few days a year with a perfect storm, usually a holiday and a heavy snowfall,” she said. “One of those famous powder days. We would have people loop the parking lot until spaces became available, but we’re hoping that this increase in parking will alleviate the problem.”

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On Thursday, Whitewater reported a base of 114 centimeters. One centimeter had fallen in the previous day, nine centimeters in the previous 48 hours, and 33 centimeters in the previous week, with more on the way.

“It looks like it’s off to a great start with the conditions,” Hornung said.

Daily operations begin with the Summit chair and Hummer handle tow in operation, with the Silver King and Glory chairs still to come. The hill will be open daily until April but lift tickets are half price until more mountain terrain opens.

Hornung said the parking expansion wasn’t the only thing keeping them busy over the summer. They’ve also been working on the new Hummingbird Lodge and campground, which is slated to open in March and will be Whitewater’s first venture into summer operations. It will have 15 tent sites, 10 RV sites, plus retail food and beverage. In the winter, it will be the home to avalanche education and serve backcountry guests.

Construction of a new staff building has also been completed in the lower parking lot. It will accommodate the anticipated increase in staff once a new chairlift opens for the 2023-24 season.

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