hill opens 

Who said the 13th is unlucky? Although the smile may be drooping on half-melted snowmen and women everywhere, there is still lot to be happy about. Despite all the lousy rain (who stepped on the $#&# spider?) and a warming trend from the south east, the powers at Whistler/Blackcomb have officially announced that Blackcomb will be opening on Saturday, Nov. 13. "We are thrilled to be opening early," says David Perry, vice president of marketing and Sales. "Whistler/Blackcomb will be opening more terrain and lifts as snow conditions allow." On Saturday, lifts in operation at Blackcomb will include the Wizard, Solar, Catskinner and Jersey Cream chairs. Skiing and snowboarding is limited to blue runs above the mid-mountain, and to intermediate and advanced skiers/riders. The hill will open at 8:30 a.m., close at 3 p.m. and early season lift ticket pricing is in effect. If you plan on getting up early to stand in line for fresh tracks on Saturday morning, don't bother. Up to 24 people will be there ahead of you, slouching and cursing with their fingers jammed in their ears. It's the first annual Let It Snow Enduro and it promises to be the least exciting competition ever held on these mountains. Twenty-four contestants will attempt to stand at the base of the Wizard lift, buckled into their skis or snowboards, for 24 hours, while "Let it snow" plays over and over again. The last one left standing will win a season’s pass, plus a 100-chair head start on the season. Food and drinks will be served, and each contestant will a 10-minute break every three hours to take care of business. If more than one person makes it through the night, a Whistler/Blackcomb trivia contest will determine the winner. To register, call 1-800-766-0449. Participants will be picked in a random drawing.

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