First snow grazes mountains across Colorado, from Loveland down to Telluride

Here are the words skiers and snowboarders long to hear at the outset of September: It snowed last night at the Breckenridge and Loveland ski areas.

So the countdown begins. Loveland tentatively plans to begin making snow in 31 days, according to a news release from the resort. The snow at Loveland followed dustings of snow reported by Aspen Snowmass and Purgatory on high peaks near those resorts the day before.

Telluride also reported a dusting of snow this morning. Spokespersons at Winter Park and Monarch said the Continental Divide near their resorts was socked in by fog.

Dana Johnson, a spokeswoman for the Cooper ski area near Leadville, said Mount Elbert (the state’s highest peak at 14,439 feet) was covered with snow this morning down to treeline, the second snowfall of the season for Elbert and neighboring Mount Massive. Johnson said the Cooper area had a dusting of snow this morning, the first of the season.

Copper Mountain posted a photo of some snow on its mountain on Saturday.

Loveland figures to compete as usual with its neighbors at Arapahoe Basin and Keystone to become the first Colorado ski area to open for the season. Since 2000, Loveland has opened in October 18 times, the earliest coming on Oct. 7 in 2009. It opened last year on Oct. 19, according to Denver Post records.

Arapahoe Basin was the first Colorado area to open last year, on Oct. 11. Keystone followed the next day.

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