Banner year extends ski season at Alyeska
April in Alaska is great. The sunshine has some heat to it, the winter colors of white are transitioning to spring and summer greens, and the snow begins to melt, making way for a whole different way of recreating. But don’t count skiing and snowboarding out yet, April is also a fantastic month to get out and play on the slopes – and Alyeska Resort has great news for you if you’re a mountain fanatic.
The first item of business is operating hours: Beginning April 1 (no joke, seriously) Alyeska’s lift will change to a 11 a.m.-6 p.m. operating schedule. This allows the morning snow to soften up before skiers and riders start making turns and also allows them to recreate on the mountain longer into the evening. Aprés at the Sitzmark deck will be the place to be after 6 p.m. The longer daylight hours mean more time for you and your shred crew to kick back in the sun and enjoy some drinks while you work on your afternoon goggle tans.
Second and arguably most important, Alyeska Resort will extend the season until Sunday, April 23. All lifts and tram service will be open to skiers and riders for an additional week of operations. The cold temperatures this winter, along with a solid base on the slopes, will provide a great ski surface in the spring and will allow the resort to stay open an additional week. Its top chairlift, Glacier Bowl Express, the Aerial Tram, Ted’s Express, Bear Cub Quad and Chair 7 will all operate until April 23.
Nothing says spring skiing at Alyeska like Spring Carnival weekend, and this year marks the 40th annual Slush Cup event, presented by Alaska Airlines. The event is set for April 7-9 with the Slush Cup on April 8 as the main event. Fifty brave (and possibly drunk) souls adorned in custom costumes point it down the slopes in hopes of making it across a 120-foot pond filled with icy cold water and slushy snow. Most fail miserably, much to the delight of the crowd. A few make it across and are rewarded handsomely for their efforts. The weekend doesn’t just feature the Slush Cup however. The Downhill bike race on Sunday morning presented by Speedway Cycles has mountain bikers racing down a frozen, snowy course starting at the Tram and finishing at the Daylodge. A staple event on the Sunday of Spring Carnival has always been the XtraTuff Tug-o-War where teams of five (must include at least one female) have an old fashioned tug-o-war over the Slush Cup pond. The winning team receives a pair of Xtratuffs for each member of their team curtesy of Big Ray’s Alaska.
Music at the Sitzmark for Spring Carnival weekend will feature Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real. Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real – sometimes referred to as POTR – is an American rock group based in California. The band consists of Lukas Nelson (vocals/guitar), Anthony Logerfo (drums), Corey McCormick (bass), and Tato Melgar (percussion). Lukas is a son of country singer Willie Nelson. Self described as cowboy, hippie, surf rock, POTR played its first shows in the fall of 2008 selling its first EP “Live Beginnings” to pay for touring. The album contained live tracks recorded at the famed “Belly Up” venue in Solana Beach, Calif.
Visit AlyeskaResort.com or TheSitzmark.com for full schedule of events or buy advance tickets.