Lack of snow delays opening for P.E.I. ski park

·2 min read

The Mark Arendz Provincial Ski Park at Brookvale has delayed opening this season because of mild weather and warm temperatures.

Erin Curley, assistant superintendent at the park, said staff have been working hard to make snow at every opportunity — when conditions are cold enough — but warmer temperatures mean the snow being made doesn't last.

"Every year is always a struggle as much as we hope the weather will be on our side it isn't always and this year hasn't been an exception to that," Curley said.

She said the goal is to have the ski park open by the last Saturday before Christmas each year, but this year conditions were too mild to make that possible.

"We'd like to see temperatures of –5 to –12 even is great," she said. "Every chance that we see that weather coming in for, you know, a few hours a day even, we'll make snow every chance we can."

Nicola MacLeod/CBC
Nicola MacLeod/CBC

Curley said this closure also means the park's snow school programs that were scheduled to begin this weekend will be delayed.

Curley said in order to open, there will need to be a few days of colder temperatures so staff can create a base layer of snow and add to it over time.

COVID-19 protocols in place

Curley said once the park does open, some of the biggest changes customers will notice this season will be the COVID-19 protocols now in place within the park.

She said masks or face coverings need to be worn while outdoors in the park, while inside all buildings and on the chairlift. Curley said customers should ride the chairlift in groups of family and friends that have bubbled together.

Other COVID-19 protocols in place at the park include limiting time spent indoors by creating outdoor ticket windows, she said.

Nicola MacLeod/CBC
Nicola MacLeod/CBC

"We're doing everything we can to ensure a safe season."

Curley said the ski park has currently delayed opening until at least Jan. 5., at which point another announcement will be made depending on weather conditions.

"We'll see what snow we're able to make over this week, the rest of the week as well as the weekend and see where we stand then," Curley said.

"We encourage everyone to be kind and be patient as we try a new way of life here at the hill."

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