Crystal Mountain visitors hit the slopes for resort's season opener

ENUMCLAW, Wash. -- Hundreds of skiers, snowboarders and visitors enjoyed a trek down Crystal Mountain Friday for the resort’s opening day of the season.

“It beats being out Black Friday shopping and enjoying it out here with the family and friends,” said Sergio Zamora, a snowboarder who brought some friends with him to experience the sport for the first time. “We’ve been talking about it all summer—can’t wait for snowboarding season to roll back around, and now it’s here and we’re just having a good time out here.”

Brady Clark and Russell Snow make the trip to Crystal Mountain Resort every year. The snowboarders started teaching their 3-year-old daughter, Sophia, when she was 16 months old.

“It’s cool to get them up here young just because a lot of kids don’t get to experience this,” said Clark.

The parents said Crystal Mountain is a chance for all people to build families and memories.

“The environment’s great honestly. Just like all the people, when you come up here, they’re all in a great mood and it’s just great to be able to hang out with everybody,” said Clark.

“With all the proper planning and everything, anybody can afford it, too. I’m on a super fixed income going to school full time and I’m able to afford it with my family. Just proper planning,” said Snow.

Crystal Mountain received about 18 inches of snow this week. A snow-making machine created another 12 inches to ensure there was enough for opening day.

“We need about another foot of snow. So, one good storm to get more train open and to get skiing on the upper mountain. But it’s a start. It’s a great start,” said Tiana Anderson, marketing director at Crystal Mountain. “Without the snow-making, really, we’d probably be a little bit light on snow still. But, thankfully we were able to kind of supplement what Mother Nature gave to us and here we are enjoying an opening day.”

Only three out of 10 chair lifts were available on opening day on the lower half of the mountain. Anderson said Crystal Mountain will be closed December 2-5 to continue snow-making efforts.

Visitors said there was just enough snow on the ground to get them on the slopes and feel the rush.

“You’re coming down the mountain, you’re halfway down and you just stop and look at everything around you. You don’t get those views from the base,” said Snow.

“The most comparable thing would probably be like a hoverboard from Back to the Future, I’d imagine. It’s just smooth, it’s free,” said Zamora. “You fall, you get back up and you just keep going.”

Crystal Mountain is Washington’s largest ski mountain with 2,600 acres.