LOS ALAMOS, N.M. –The Los Alamos Ski Club announced today that the management group that operates Sipapu Ski and Summer Resort officially started operating Pajarito Mountain Ski Area. Resort officials say they are now preparing for a full ski and snowboard season starting Thanksgiving Day.

“We are excited to take this next step for the future of Pajarito Mountain,” said Susan Brockway, President of the Los Alamos Ski Club Board of Directors. “We have full confidence that this partnership will continue the Club’s traditions, protect and enhance the recreational opportunities for our community, and improve the overall skiing/boarding experience. We look forward to working together into the future.”

Last May, the Los Alamos Ski Club – which had previously owned and operated Pajarito – voted and approved to transfer Pajarito Mountain Ski Area to Los Alamos County and a new partnership formed by the Sipapu Group. As part of an asset transfer plan approved by its membership, the Ski Club has initiated transferal of its property and operating assets to Sipapu Group, and is working to transfer the balance of its property to Los Alamos County.

James Coleman, managing partner at the Sipapu Group, pledged to make skiing their first priority.

“We understand how important Pajarito is, not only to the Los Alamos Ski Club and this community but also to our state, and we couldn’t be more thrilled to partner with Los Alamos County to protect skiing and snowboarding both for the 2014-2015 season and in the future,” Coleman said.

Located 70 miles east of Pajarito, Sipapu is known for offering the state’s longest ski and snowboard season (this year, Sipapu’s lifts will start turning Saturday, November 15 – one of the earliest starts in recent history). For more than a decade, Sipapu has locked in the title of “first ski area to open in New Mexico” due to its snowmaking expertise – expertise that Sipapu officials are now eager to share with Pajarito.

As part of their commitment to snowmaking, Los Alamos County, Pajarito staff, the Los Alamos Ski Club and the Sipapu Group have been working to secure approvals for a temporary pipeline, which will transport water (to be used for snowmaking purposes in the winter and fire mitigation in the summer) to the ski area’s holding pond. Resort officials now say they are in the final stages of the approval process for the temporary pipeline.

Today Pajarito and Sipapu also announced a new season pass product, the New Mexico Power Pass Plus. This unique season pass offers unlimited skiing and snowboarding at Pajarito and Sipapu, and it now includes three free days at Purgatory at Durango Mountain Resort and $50 lift tickets thereafter (with blackout dates). The free lift tickets at Purgatory are in addition to the free lift tickets all New Mexico Power Pass holders receive at more than 25 partner mountains in New Mexico, Colorado, Utah and throughout the country.

Current New Mexico Power Pass holders have been automatically upgraded to receive the $50 lift tickets at Purgatory.

Now through Sunday, October 26, the New Mexico Power Pass Plus is $429 for adults, and the New Mexico Power Pass is $329 for adults. All season passes are available for purchase at www.SkiPajarito.com, www.SipapuNM.com or www.ThePowerPass.com or by calling the Pajarito season pass office at (505) 662-5725 or the Sipapu season pass office at (800) 587-2240.

In addition to investing in water and snowmaking, the Sipapu Group plans to enhance both the winter and summer on-mountain experience through trail, lift, terrain park, tree skiing, and mountain biking trail expansions and improvements.

Skiing in the Pajarito area dates at least to the 1930s, and a ski club was first organized in 1943. Today, the area has six lifts — a quad, a triple, three doubles and one rope tow — 40 trails on 751 acres and a peak elevation of 10,440 feet.

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About Pajarito
Pajarito Mountain is where performance skiers come for miles of mogul runs and a laid back atmosphere. Located at the eastern edge of the Jemez Mountains in Northern New Mexico, 5 miles west of Los Alamos and just 90 minutes from Albuquerque and 45 minutes from Santa Fe. Pajarito hosts spectacular views of the Rio Grande Valley and the Valles Caldera National Preserve. Privately owned by the Los Alamos Ski Club and developed in the late 1950s, Pajarito now enjoys 40 named trails and has some of the best bump skiing in the state with a fully operational ski school, Café, and ski rental facility as well as a large volunteer ski patrol. Pajarito Mountain is home to an extensive mountain biking trail system with lift served access and hosts several New Mexico Brewers Festivals throughout the summer. For more information, visit www.skipajarito.com.

About Sipapu Ski and Summer Resort
Sipapu Ski and Summer Resort is New Mexico’s fastest growing ski resort. Located just 20 miles southeast of Taos and two hours north of Albuquerque, Sipapu offers family-friendly, family fun to all levels of skiers and snowboarders. Family-owned and operated since 1952, Sipapu is home to New Mexico’s longest ski season and the best deals in the Rockies. The resort is surrounded by the Sangre de Cristo Mountains and Carson National Forest, and features over 40 trails, five lifts and two terrain parks. On-site amenities include slope-side lodging, a full-service ski shop, ski school and New Mexico’s best riverside dining experience at the Riverside Cafe. For more information, visit www.SipapuNM.com.

About Los Alamos County
Los Alamos is located on the Pajarito Plateau, in the mountains of Northern New Mexico. Home of Los Alamos National Laboratory, it is a small community (pop. 18,000) that possesses a world-wide reputation for scientific and technological development. Cultural and recreational opportunities abound, with plenty of hiking and biking trails, skiing, and easy access to national attractions such as the nearby Valles Caldera National Preserve and Bandelier National Monument. Los Alamos is surrounded by National Forest, National Park, Pueblo, and other Federal lands. The County Council is the governing body with seven members.