Lake Tahoe’s Diamond Peak Ski Resort opening day on tap for Thursday, December 14 | SierraSun.com

Lake Tahoe’s Diamond Peak Ski Resort opening day on tap for Thursday, December 14

As the Tahoe Basin gets hit with another round of snowstorms, Incline Village's Diamond Peak Ski Resort is getting closer to kicking off the 2017-18 season.

The resort will enter its 51st year of operations when it begins turning lifts early on Thursday, Dec. 14, and will come into the season with several new features and upgrades for skiers and snowboarders — highlighted by a new terrain park. The resort opened on Dec. 15 last season.

The Lakeview Terrain Park is one of several upgrades the resort has made for the upcoming season, and will feature new rails and boxes. The resort will relocate the small to mid-sized progression park from Popular to the Lakeview run, giving riders and skiers views of Lake Tahoe as they develop their skills on the park's smaller features. Another benefit of relocating the park will be the ability to quickly ride laps when the Ridge chairlift is running. The park will be accessible via the Crystal Express and Ridge chairlifts.

"It's a beautiful location," said Paul Raymore

Marketing Manager for Diamond Peak Ski Resort. "It also has it's own dedicated chair, which when running, you'll be able to do laps through that progression park. It's just going to be a really cool area."

Helping with the creation of this year's terrain parks will be new Slope Maintenance Manager Matte Melilli, along with Assistant Slope Maintenance Manager Tim Hay. The two will oversee the resort's snowmaking, grooming, terrain parks, and summer slope maintenance operations, according to a release from Diamond Peak, with Melilli and Hay bringing experience from many different ski resorts throughout the world, most recently, though, at Boreal Mountain Resort. Melilli worked as Senior Manager of Snow Operations at Boreal, and Hay was the resort's Grooming Supervisor.

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"I started grooming here at Diamond Peak at the end of the season and got hooked on these awesome trails and spectacular views," Hay said in a statement. "Anything is possible and I really look forward to working with everyone that is a part of this Diamond Peak team to produce something great next winter."

Melilli's resume includes planning and constructing terrain park features for events such as the Burton U.S. Open and the Dew Tour as a contractor for Snow Park Technologies.

"I am very excited to be a part of the Slope Maintenance Team at Diamond Peak," Melilli said in a statement. "It is a privilege to be involved in this community and enjoy the fantastic views while I work. The combination of a great snowmaking system, top-notch equipment and awesome terrain is a big part of my excitement to be here. I work with great individuals who are team focused and care about their mountain which is yet another reason why I am a big fan of what is going on at Diamond Peak."

The two new additions to Diamond Peak's team will benefit from increased snowmaking this season, with improvements to the resort's HKD high-efficiency tower snow guns, which will allow for the snowmaking equipment to be more strategically used. The resort also said it has been able to increase water pressure throughout the snowmaking system, which will allow for increased productivity during snowmaking operations resort wide.

"Our parks are going to be at a whole new level this year, and people should come check them out," said Raymore.

 

Opening tomorrow top-to-bottom with great coverage, beautiful weather, and 4 features on Crystal Ridge.

Posted by Diamond Peak Ski Resort on Wednesday, December 13, 2017

 

The resort hopes to have each of its lifts running and most of the mountain open for opening day.

"We hope to have all of them," said Raymore. "That's one of the reasons we are pretty conservative and wait to open, is that we like to be able to provide all of our lifts and most of the mountain when we open … as long as we get cold temperatures, we should be able to open most of the runs."

For season pass holders, there will be numerous perks for the 2017-18 season, including 44 complimentary lift tickets to Diamond Peak's 11 partner resorts — up to four days at each resort. Participating resorts in the area include Boreal and Homewood Mountain Resort. Other resorts are: Bogus Basin (Idaho), Red Lodge Mountain Resort (Mont.), Whitefish Mountain Resort (Mont.), Purgatory Resort (Colo.), Hesperus Ski Area (Colo.), Arizona Snowbowl (Ariz.), Pajarito Mountain Ski Area (N.M.), Whitefish (Mont.) and Sipapu Ski & Summer Resort (N.M.).

Diamond Peak will also host guided tours and hikes this year, with interpretive tours running during the season in partnership with the Incline Village General Improvement District's Waste Not conservation staff, and after-hours snowshoe hikes in partnership with the Incline Village Parks & Recreation Department.

For those just starting out, Diamond Peak has upgraded its entire snowboard rental fleet with new, progression-focused Learn to Ride snowboards, boots, and bindings from Burton.

Diamond Peak is planning its Ski Season Kickoff Party & Season Passholder Appreciation event on Friday, Dec. 15 from 4:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., which will feature live music, food, prizes, and more. The event is par of the monthlong Tahoe Northern Lights Celebration.

The resort also still has jobs available for the upcoming season. For more information or for passes and lift tickets visit DiamondPeak.com.

Staff writer Justin Scacco can be reached at 530-550-2643 or via email at jscacco@sierrasun.com

Mountain facts

Elevation: base 6,700 feet — summit 8,540 feet

Skiable acres: 655

Average snowfall: 300 – 350 inches per year

Snowmaking: 75 percent of developed terrain has snowmaking capabilities

Runs: 30 named trails, plus open bowls and tree skiing areas

Terrain: 18 percent beginner, 46 percent intermediate, 36 percent advanced

Longest run: 2.5 miles