As the Bullwheel Turns

Wolf Creek in the Media

April 8, 2016 – Colorado Ski.com
Wolf Creek’s Season Ends Like it Began – Deep in Snow

January 2016 – CBS Denver
El Niño Loves Colorado’s San Juan Mountains

January 2016 – ColoradoSki.com
Southwest Snow: Three Days at Purgatory and Wolf Creek Resorts

December 2015 – Powder.com
Storm Dispatch: Wolf Creek, Colorado

December 2015 – Cheatsheet.com
The Ultimate Ski Vacation: Wolf Creek

December 2015 – onthesnow.com
Powder Gallery: Colorado Resort Refills all Week

November 2015 – Skinet.com
Powder Shots and Family Ties

March 2015 – Coloradodaily.com
From Winter Park to Wolf Creek, four Colorado ski resorts mark anniversaries

January 2015 – The Dallas Morning News
Colorado’s Wolf Creek is heaven for powder hounds

January 2015 – Garagegrowngear.com
Steep powder, cheap tix… 6 fabulous small ski areas

December 2014 – ColoradoSki.com
Colorado Road Trip: Ski The Birthday Mountains

December 2014 – Durangoherald.com
Wolf Creek turns 75

November 2014 – MtnWeekly.com
7 Places to score snow during a El Nino Winter

November 2014 – MineralCountyMiner.com
Opening day at Wolf Creek brings crowds

October 2014 – mtnweeklynews.com
Wolf Creek Resort Review

September 2014 – Pagosasun.com
Nordic Club membership drive, Wolf Creek season pass drawing tomorrow

July 2014 – Pagosasun.com
Big climbs and big smiles at GECKO’s ‘8 Hours of Wolf Creek’

June 2014 – Pagosasun.com
Ski hall of fame inducts Kingsbury Pitcher

June 2014 – Aspentimes.com
Man who saw Snowmass potential is headed to Colorado Ski Hall of Fame

March 2014 – powder7.com
Trip Report: Hungry Like the Wolf (Creek)

February 2014 – KDVR.com
Explore Colorado: Wolf Creek

January 2014 – Adventure.NationalGeographic.com
Best Secret Ski Towns of North America

December 2013 – 5280.com
Sunny With A Chance Of Powder

December 04, 2013 – OutsideOnline.com
Editor’s Choice: 2014 Powder Resorts

December 03, 2012 – www.forbes.com
Wolf Creek – one of the legendary ski destinations in the world.

October 20, 2012 – Business.Transworld.net
Wolf Creek Owner on Proposed 5-Lift, 1,000 Acre Expansion

Feb 08, 2012 – OnTheSnow.com
Awesome Wolf Creek Powder Shoot!

Nov 14, 2011 – ESPN.com
Where to find powder in November

Nov 12, 2011 – The Ski Channel
The US Ski Team is Coming to Train at Wolf Creek Ski Area

Oct 10, 2011 – C-Springs Gazette
Wolf Creek makes history with ski season opener

Oct 08, 2011 – ESPN.com
Colo.’s Wolf Creek resort to open Oct. 8

Oct 07, 2011 – Chicago Tribune
No joke: Colorado ski season starts Saturday)

Mar 1, 2011 – Inc.
The 24/7 Family Business

Jan 6, 2011 – Life and Leisure
Wolf Creek Skiing Rocks Local Teens

Oct 11, 2010
Wolf Creek Leads By Example For Sustainability

May 6, 2010
Wolf Creek Is Favorite Rocky Mountain Resort Of OnTheSnow.com Visitors

Mar 15, 2010
Wolf Creek’s 70th Anniversary

Feb 3, 2010
Skiers howling for Wolf Creek

Dec 13, 2009
Affordable Skiing: Wolf Creek

Charles Elliott’s 100th Birthday

November 19, 2013 – Video by Bob HiteColorado’s Oldest Skier

November 19, 2013 – Denver Post
Wolf Creek pioneer marks 100th birthday skiing at area he helped start

November 20, 2013 – Huffington Post Skiing Pioneer Celebrates Turning 100 By Skiing Because Of Course

December 02, 2013 – Pagosa Springs Journal Pioneer skier celebrates 100th birthday at Wolf Creek Ski Area

Ski Season 2016-2017

Wolf Creek Ski Area has an exciting new addition to the Wolf Creek Lift System for the 2016-2017 ski season and has made improvements to the online reservation system, which now offers all rental packages for online reservations and includes payment of ski school reservations. Both the ski and snowboard rental departments increased their fleets with new demo, sport and standard models from some of the best manufactures in the industry.

The new addition to the Wolf Creek Lift System is a new covered conveyor lift named after the Lynx constellation and endangered Canadian Lynx, which has been reintroduced to our area. The Lynx Lift is located behind the ski rental building linking the existing base area to a new teaching area. Guests who enroll in Beginner Packages will now purchase lesson and lift tickets at the Ticket Office, stroll over to the Sports Center where they can stop in Treasure Sports for apparel and functional items, then pick up their skis next door in the Rental Shop. Once rental gear is picked-up guests then simply walk out the back door of the Rental Shop to begin their day on the mountain. The Lynx Lift does not only service beginner terrain but also helps intermediate and advanced skiers access the Elma and Alberta lifts. The Alberta and Tranquility Parking Lots are accessible via the Lynx Lift by transporting guests up to Okey Dokey and then onto a trail that leads to parking. Free shuttles are made available to guests parked in the various free, paved parking lots at Wolf Creek.

The Beginner Special, great for skiers and boarders ages nine and older, has been enhanced thanks to the installation of the Lynx Lift. The Beginner Special now includes four hours of lessons with a trained instructor, access to the Nova and Lynx Lifts for the entire ski day and access to two additional lifts, Raven and Elma, after 3:00 p.m.   A follow-up lesson and lift ticket package, Second Day Beginner Special, will also include the Lynx Lift in addition to all-day access to Nova, Raven and Elma Lifts accompanied by a two-hour, half-day lesson.

Group lessons for all ability levels, ages five and older, including Beginner Specials and Second Day Beginner Specials are available for reservation and payment as an improvement to the online reservation system. Ski School lesson options and reservations can be found under the Ski School tab on WolfCreekSki.com. “Reserve Lessons Online” buttons are on the Groups and Beginners page, as well as the Children’s Programs page. These improvements to the online reservations system will better expedite guests’ time at the Ticket Office, Rental Shop and Ski School. The new improvements also allow guests visiting Wolf Creek to have the luxury of arranging and paying for their lessons and rentals from the comfort of their home prior to their trip to Wolf Creek.

An additional improvement made to the online reservation system is making the entire rental fleet available for online reservation and payment. Guests who have reserved basic, sport, performance and premium demo sets online will have the rental ready upon their arrival with certified technicians fitting equipment prior to their day at Wolf Creek. Rental options for skis and snowboards can be found on the Equipment Rental page under the Pricing tab on WolfCreekSki.com. A “Rent Your Skis and Snowboards Now” button can be found under the rental set descriptions.

Other improvements at Wolf Creek include freshly painted buildings in the Base Area, additional paved parking and paving repairs, two new buses in the shuttle fleet and trail work around the Elma Lift.

Wolf Creek Ski Area is known for having an exceptional variety of terrain, abundant snowfall and plenty of powder days. Wolf Creek has gradual sloping, wide green runs for beginners to excellent expert terrain that will give advanced skiers and boarders an in-bounds backcountry experience. Finding an intermediate groomer to cruise down to start your day isn’t hard to find and tree skiing is endless!

Cross-country and skate skiers have complimentary use of the Nordic Track at Wolf Creek. Exploring all varieties of terrain is simple with a refined lift system inclusive of nine lifts total, ranging from high-speed detachable quads and triple chairlifts to rolling conveyors.

Wolf Creek is unique in that the location of the ski area is in the beautiful Southern San Juan Mountains, eliminating the frustration of driving on a heavily trafficked corridor to ski. Wolf Creek Ski Area has the advantage of being located on U.S. Highway 160 near the summit of Wolf Creek Pass, which is a beautiful and well-maintained mountain pass with consistent improvements to the 3 and 4 lanes of highway. The pass is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year. Accommodations are available in the intimate towns of South Fork and Creede or Pagosa Springs, home to the world’s deepest geothermal hot springs.

Plan a vacation to Wolf Creek Ski Area with family and friends and share a great experience together in the beautiful Rocky Mountains of Colorado. The low-density skiing experience at Wolf Creek Ski Area makes Wolf Creek a destination hot spot for powder hounds, families and new skiers alike. Wolf Creek stands out from other ski areas in Colorado not only for being family owned and operated, but for also having affordable lift tickets and lesson options. Adding to Wolf Creek’s uniqueness is the phenomenal homemade food found in all eateries at Wolf Creek and convenient amenities that are at no cost, like paved parking and shuttle services.

Wolf Creek is looking forward to the 2016-2017 season and strives to bring variety and quality services to every age group throughout the entire ski season! Additional information can be found on www.WolfCreekSki.com or by calling 970-264-5639.

Don’t forget to call 1-800-SKI-WOLF for the latest update on snow and weather conditions. Weekly updates, events and photos of what’s happening around the ski area are posted to Wolf Creek’s social media accounts.

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest!

Facebook – @wolfcreekskiarea

Twitter – @WolfCreekSki2

Instagram – @WolfCreekSki

Pinterest – WolfCreekSki

Wolf Creek Ski Area is an equal service provider.

Ski Season 2015-2016

Wolf Creek Ski Area is ready to welcome in the 2015 – 2016 winter season after a summer of frequent rainstorms and skies full of incredibly beautiful cloud formations. As usual, this period in between seasons has been a busy one. A focus has been placed on maintaining the changing tree scape of Wolf Creek by removing hazard trees caused by the spruce bark beetle and transplanting small healthy trees and saplings into areas that will most benefit the landscape and watershed.

Over the years, a system of exploders, Gazex and Avi Blasters, has been set in place, to use as a part of the avalanche hazard reduction program at Wolf Creek Ski Area. This fall, four more devices have been installed. Wolf Creek now holds the record of having the largest exploder system of all the North American ski areas! During storm cycles, these devices located all along the Knife Ridge out to the Horseshoe Bowl, are used as avalanche release systems. The Gazex and Avi Blasters work without explosives by mixing a combination of oxygen and propane, this is detonated by a spark to cause a powerful shock wave. This implosion lifts the snow up in the start zone of the avalanche, causing the build up of snow to release. These four new additions are located over Big Cornice above the Knife Ridge chutes. Using this innovative system allows Wolf Creek to control 24 hours a day enabling the ski patrol to open avalanche terrain early on big powder mornings.

The biggest on-mountain project is completing the Race Hutch building, which is integral to the operation of the Wolf Creek Fun Race Series. Conduit has been trenched along the side of the course providing power for the timing equipment, cameras and speakers. The Hutch has an observation area for the crew to view the racers and storage for poles, gates, safety fencing and banners. The carpenters have been busy installing windows, in-floor heating and insulations to bring the project to a finish. A full race schedule along with other events can be found on the Wolf Creek website, WolfCreekSki.com.

Improvements are also being made to the ski and snowboard rental department with the introduction of a fleet of premium demo skis, snowboards, boots and an online reservation system that is dedicated specifically to this class of rentals. Guests will be able to reserve ahead of time and make a payment for this premium class of skis, boards and boots. Looking into the near future Wolf Creek is cautiously moving into digitizing its entire rental department both on site and online. The Wolf Creek rental department continually improves by adding onto the number and quality of skis, boards and boots offered each season. Nolan Fulton, the ski area’s rental supervisor is now retired after thirty-four years of professional leadership. While his talents will be sorely missed, Jesse Miller, is now ready to step up to the position with 12 years under his belt.

A ski school online reservation system will also be in the experimental stages this season by offering a sign-up for group and private instructions. A pre-registration online is being offered to expedite the registration process at the ticket windows. Guest will be able to have the convenience and ease of getting their information to the ski school through an online system that they can fill out at home prior to their trip. This new pre-registration system will be more efficient over holiday periods, for guests as well as Wolf Creek’s Ski School Directors.

Seniors, ages 65 to 79, are making a break from children this year with their own lift tickets and season pass! Splitting the seniors from the children is an effort to keep skiing affordable to families with children who could often use a financial break when vacationing. To better serve seniors and baby boomers, Wolf Creek is offering more specially priced clinics and a full schedule of Local Appreciation days.

Wolf Creek is looking forward to a new season and strives to bring variety and quality services to every age group throughout the entire ski season! For more detailed information please see WolfCreekSki.com.

 

Ski Season 2014-2015

Wolf Creek Ski Area is ready to fire up its 75th season of epic powder skiing!

Click to see our 75th Anniversary Events!

A number of ski enthusiasts from the San Luis Valley got together in the late thirties to enjoy the snow that they knew fell in abundance on top of Wolf Creek Pass. Seventy-five years later, Wolf Creek Ski Area is still providing a service, which allows the public to use and enjoy the mountains in the winter season.

Kingsbury “Pitch” Pitcher, owner of Wolf Creek Ski Area and New Mexico Ski Hall of Famer, will be inducted into the Colorado Ski and Snowboard Hall of Fame on October 17th, 2014.  Pitch will be honored for his role in the development of the ski industry in both Colorado and the United States.  Pitch, who celebrated his 95th birthday in July, was one of the first certified instructors of the Rocky Mountain Ski Instructors Association.  The life-long skier raced for the Stanford University Ski Team and was a ski school instructor, supervisor and ski area operator for many years.  Pitch has been a ski industry consultant over the years and has played a role in the development of many ski resorts including Snowmass, Buttermilk Mountain, Arrowhead, Ski Apache, Santa Fe Ski Basin, Big Sky, Wolf Creek and ski properties near Telluride.

This 2014 – 2015 ski season, the Elma Lift will become a part of the mountain, adding more variety and character to the current Wolf Creek lift system.  The Elma Lift is named after the Pitcher Family’s strong and faithful Black Labrador.  The new fixed-grip triple chairlift is refurbished from the old Treasure chairlift and will be equipped with a new efficient electric motor and re-engineered parts that meet all current safety standards.  Fifteen towers will span 460 vertical feet, with a capacity of 1,200 skiers per hour.  Although this is one of Wolf Creek’s smaller lifts, it will provide access to an area of the mountain that is under utilized and establish an alternate route back to the base area from the Alberta Lift.

The new Race Hutch comes to life this season, with an observation area for the crew and storage area for the race equipment, banner, poles and safety fencing.  The new building will be approximately 18 feet by 20 feet, located below the old race shack.  The Wolf Creek Fun Race Series runs throughout the winter, which is an extremely popular program for guests of all ages and abilities.  The races are free and the fastest racers in 28 brackets are awarded gold, silver and bronze medals.  See wolfcreekski.com for a schedule of the races.

The Wolf Creek Ski School is introducing a new pilot snowboard program called the Wolf Riders for children age five to eight that teaches the basics and beyond of snowboarding.  Tickets for the Wolf Riders can be purchased in the Ticket Office.  Rentals for Wolf Riders are in the Boarder Dome.  Kids will meet in the Wolf Pup Building designed specifically for that age group which offers easy access to the Magic Carpet and Nova Lift.  The full day Wolf Rider ticket includes four hours of lessons, plus lunch and snacks; half day is also available.  The ski school offers a variety of instruction for adults, seniors, women, juniors and the well-known Wolf Pup ski program.

Wolf Creek Pass is in the epicenter of the Spruce Bark Beatle epidemic and the ski area continues to identify and remove dead and dying hazard trees, while leaving many of the standing dead for the wildlife to live in.  Summer projects include tree removal along lift corridors and other strategic areas.

Wolf Creek continues to do an excellent job of providing quality food service for the many eateries on the mountain. Specialties include: Santa Fe-style green chili stew, red chili, local organic grilled burgers, gourmet salad bar, homemade pizza, hot daily lunch specials, a number of delicious desserts and refreshing après-ski drinks.

As a part of Wolf Creek’s many services, Wolf Creek offers free paved parking and free parking shuttles.  Wolf Creek Ski Area will continue to offer the complementary use of the Nordic track as it has in years past.  The ski area maintains the grooming and track setting each season.  A schedule of events and programs is available at wolfcreekski.com along with other detailed information and photos.  A mobile friendly version of the website will be available so smart phones and electronic tablets will have easy access to the latest happenings on the mountain.

 

New Projects at Wolf Creek for the 2013 – 2014 Season!

Wolf Creek is looking forward to this season with an exciting upgrade to the lift system and other projects that will improve the base core of an already great mountain! Wolf Creek Ski Area had a good winter for the 2012 – 2013 season; the year-end count was 201,000 skiers. The season’s s start was slow, but true to the Wolf Creek style, the white flakes fell just as the Thanksgiving holidays approached. Conditions improved throughout the season although the weather was unseasonably dry in March.

Wolf Creek Ski Area is replacing the Treasure Lift, which is one of Wolf Creek’s main lifts connecting guests to a wide variety of terrain with a new, Doppelmayr, detachable, high-speed quad. The new Treasure Stoke Lift will provide guests with an easier and more pleasurable loading and unloading experience. The ride up will be a little over six minutes; the capacity will remain the same, providing that low- density on-mountain experience that Wolf Creek is known for. Treasure Stoke will be a great improvement to the core of the Wolf Creek lift system.

Maintenance of Wolf Creek’s existing buildings is another priority for this summer. The Administrative office and Ticket Office at Wolf Creek is undergoing several maintenance/improvement projects including new carpet, an updated kitchenette, wall preservation treatments, and new ticket windows. The Ticket Office is Wolf Creek’s central information center as well as the sales office for all ticket and ski school purchases.

Besides, the new Treasure Stoke, four other projects are in the line-up for improvements to Wolf Creek which include: The Elma Lift, the Sports Center Remodel, the Race Hutch and the Water Tank. All these projects have recent approval by the US Forest Service and will have a 2 t0 3 year completion time.

The Elma Lift will provide skiers a way to get back to the base area from the bottom of the Alberta lift and eliminate the long traverse across the mountain from Park Avenue to the base area. During times of avalanche hazard reduction when the Alberta Lift opens later than the other lifts, the Elma Lift will allow the public to return to the Treasure Lift and the lower Waterfall Area while waiting for the Alberta Lift to open. The Elma Lift will be a fixed-grip, triple chairlift that will use the re-engineered equipment from the Treasure Lift. The Elma lift will be approximately 2,400 feet in length, with the bottom terminal located near the existing bottom terminal of the Alberta Lift, and topping out where Flim Flam branches off Navajo Trail.

The Sports Center Upgrade/Remodel includes a tasteful expansion of the existing facility into a two-story building. The current Boarder Dome (roughly 650 square feet) will be eliminated, with its functions being incorporated into the remodel/enlargement of the Sports Center facility. The deck/barbeque area on the Upper/Main Lodge will be replaced, as well as the staircase. This project is to be completed in two phases. The first phase includes the construction of the foundation and lower storage area in the Sports Center, along with rebuilding the stairs and the east deck of the Upper/Main Lodge. The second phase includes building the second floor of the Sports Center.

Wolf Creek Ski Area hosts a number of “Fun Races” throughout the ski season. These popular races are free and open to skiers and boarders of all ages and abilities with a dual race format. The course is set up in a modified giant slalom, which begins at the top of the Charisma trail and ends at the Race Hutch. The existing Race Hutch, located near the bottom of the Charisma trail, will be replaced and upgraded to house the race equipment, fencing, signs and speaker system. The new building will be approximately 18 feet by 20 feet and located below the current Race Hutch location. Although slated for the 2012 -2013 ski season, final approval has only recently been granted.

While Wolf Creek Ski Area relies primarily on natural snowfall, there are times during the early season or years of light snowfall where snowmaking is used to supplement natural snowfall on select trails. These trails are generally well-covered but have areas of minimal snow coverage that prevent the trails to be opened.  A new 500,000-gallon steel water tank will be built in the flat area near the intersection of Turnpike and Powder Puff trails. This tank will support the base area infrastructure and snowmaking operations, as well as fire fighting.

New in the Ski School:
Beginner Packages that are guaranteed for success! New skiers and boarders can purchase the Beginner Ski/Snowboard Special, which includes access to the Nova Lift (beginner lift) and four hours of group lessons. When a guest purchases this ticket and completes the instruction and is still not confident with stopping and riding the Nova lift, the Wolf Creek ski school will personalize the service. An instructor will take this guest and give additional personalized time (up to an hour) after the class or the next morning. The Wolf Creek Ski School is guaranteeing a successful experience to each new skier and boarder!

Rental Skis and Snowboard Fleet Upgrades:
Wolf Creek’s inventory of skis and boards remains the best of it’s kind! The rental department is known for it’s friendly staff and certified technicians to give the best- fit and comfortable experience that skiers and boarders of all levels are looking for. A variety of new “Demo” Skis and Snowboards will be added to the rental fleet as well as an entire new “Performance” Line.

A high technology infrared wax machine is making its debut in the rental shop; a full venue of hot wax packages will be offered.

Wolf Creek deals with the Spruce Bark Beetle:
The Spruce Bark Beetle has been devastating to Wolf Creek Pass. Wolf Creek identifies that this outbreak is a natural process, and accepts that a dramatic change to our existing landscape is unavoidable. The ski area anticipates that the infestation and its ensuing fires are inevitable. This summer, over 100,000 acres burned in the wildfire of the West Fork Complex, of which Wolf Creek Ski Area’s special use permit is adjacent to. Although there are no good solutions to this immense problem, Wolf Creek skiers and snowboarders should be aware of the beetle-kill issue and avoid running over saplings and smaller treetops.

Currently, Wolf Creek works with the US Forest Service by removing hazard trees and identifying trees for fire reduction, i.e. fire hazard reduction.

Wolf Creek continues to remove hazard trees at its own expense with hired aerial cranes; these helicopters ensure that the sensitive terrain is minimally disturbed.  Tree removal is also done with snow-cats before the snow-melt is over.  The most hazardous trees are identified and removed.  Currently Wolf Creek estimates that 95 to 100 percent of all mature Engelmann Spruce will be lost during this natural process.

Wolf Creek Ski Area supports Colorado State Search and Rescue:
2012-2013 pilot program was a huge success and now it will be standard practice for Wolf Creek’s Season Pass holders to receive a Colorado Outdoor Recreation Search and Rescue Card with the purchase of their season pass. Supporting Search and Rescue is a need Wolf Creek Ski Area finds critical for skiers and snowboarders that frequent Wolf Creek as well as all outdoor enthusiasts that enjoy the many activities Colorado offers

Wolf Creek Ski Area will continue to offer the complimentary use of the Nordic Track as it has in years past. The ski area maintains the grooming and track setting each season. The cross-country track has been the focus of several Nordic and Skate Ski Clinics over the past few seasons. These clinics are free to skiers of all abilities and provide participants with helpful techniques to improve skill for a more efficient and enjoyable cross-country skiing experience.

 

Wolf Creek Ski Area 2013/2014 Proposed Projects

Multi-year Improvement Plan:

Areas to be improved:

  • Elma Lift
  • Race Hutch
  • Sports Center Upgrade/Remodel
  • Water Tank