Busy opening day for Granite Peak Ski Area - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Busy opening day for Granite Peak Ski Area

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WAUSAU (WAOW) -- Granite Peak Ski Area opened Saturday morning. The hills were flooded with skiers and snow boarders.

"It's one of the earliest that we've been open as far as I can remember," said Chris Pingel, the Snow Sports Education Director at Granite Peak.

Pingel estimated more than a thousand people would show up for opening day.

"It's busy, really crowded," said Britney Williams, a snowboarder from Neehna. "It's a little nerve-racking too. We're trying to get the hang of it again."

Workers say they kicked off opening weekend with four runs.

"We have seventy-five runs so four is only a small percentage," explained Pingel.

He says if the temperatures say below freezing, more slopes will be up and running soon.

The skiers and snowboarders say they don't mind the cold. They're just excited to be out on the hills again.

"There are a lot of activities. Everyone's super happy to be out. Super fun vibe," said Rayce Ruffing, a skier from Franklin.

People of all experience levels hit the slopes.

"There are some that are taking lesson and getting out for the first time," said Pingel.

Many visitors say they've already made plans to come back.

"I try to get out here as often as I can. I'll probably be out here four days a week," said Michael Altobelli, a snowboarder from Stevens Point.

Granite Peak workers say they'll shut down during the week to make more snow for the slopes. They hope to open again next weekend with twice as many runs.

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