Stevens Pass ski season opens on heels of winter storm warning

STEVENS PASS, Wash. – Wednesday was officially opening day at Stevens Pass.

Enough snow fell this week that three lifts were able to open for skiers and snowboarders early Wednesday morning at 9 a.m.

Skiers and snowboarders lined up early to ring in the opening day.

“It’s going great actually, yeah loving it,” said Chris Usher from Redmond. “A lot of powder, more that I though was going to be a week ago. Glad to be out here.”

The opening day debuted a new ski lift that doubles the capacity of its older cousin.

“Everyone’s in a good mood, everyone’s happy,” said general manager Tom Pettigrew. “It’s just a really special time to be in the business.”

Even if it’s still early in the season, many said Wednesday’s opening was a success.

“I mean, it’s pretty shallow in terms of depth,” said snowboarder Aaron Peach. “I think you can get some good turns in, but you can make the best of it for sure.”

Stevens Pass opening day lasted through 4 p.m. on Wednesday.

Over the next few days, several more feet or snow are in the forecast for Washington’s mountain passes.

Severe winter driving conditions are forecast.

Emergency managers and transportation officials urge drivers to pack an emergency kit and a set of chains for those crossing the passes.