Student Newspaper at Michigan Tech University since 1921

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Mont Ripley updates

As Huskies begin the spring semester and return to campus, Mont Ripley continues to make snow for those who participate in snow sports. This winter has been unnaturally warm, with temperatures consistently falling over 40 degrees Fahrenheit. With the warm weather, there has been minimal snowfall, and instead rain has melted most of the white blanket. The hill hasn’t been open to the public for very long this season, and opened after a week hiatus on Jan. 6. Only the T-Bar was in usage over the weekend, with the Husky Lift opening on Jan. 8. 

Aside from the strange weather, Ripley has high hopes for a successful expansion project. In the past, Ripley added snow machines in 2006 to prolong the usability of the hill, and added the Copper Hoist chair lift in 2007 that doubled chair capacity. Mont Ripley aims to improve their chalet at the base of the mountain, as it was built in 1965. Enrollment has since doubled, and the student usage is evident at 1,780 requested passes at time of publication. Guest Services Supervisor Melissa Williamson commented that this number isn’t too far off from last year’s, and that students will continue to request season passes throughout the winter months. An improved or expanded chalet will accommodate the growing student population. 

Ripley also has hopes to add a top to bottom beginner run to the mountain, otherwise known as a green run. Now, the only green run available is a short distance with little incline, and creates a big jump when beginners move to their first blue run (an intermittently difficult run). Lastly, Mont Ripley aims to expand their parking options to create more convenient parking for those who wish to use the mountain. Overflow parking is currently across the road from Ripley, which causes a hindrance for skiers and snowboarders who need to cross the busy roadway to get to the hill.

This being said, students and community members alike have a positive outlook on the snowsports season after several inches dropped this weekend, and are looking forward to enjoying Mont Ripley in the months to come.

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