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Great Divide early opening

Saturday will mark the earliest opening day ever for Great Divide Ski Area, which is known for being the first in Montana to open each year. 

Last year, the ski area northwest of Helena near Marysville opened Nov. 11. This year's Nov. 10 opening will be its earliest to date.

"We had a pretty good snowfall earlier in the week. Then put a few days of cold temperatures together with our powerful snowmaking system and very quickly, we’ve got a ski trail," the ski area said on its Facebook page.

The Good Luck Chairlift to Broadway trail is about 3,000 feet long and 100 feet wide, with 615 feet of vertical. A PocketPark with a half-dozen fun boxes and rails alongside the trail will be open as well. The beginner area is open, but the rope tow is not yet running.

The Good Luck Lift will operate Saturday from just after daylight to closing at 4 p.m. Great Divide describes the early morning opening as a "little friendly competition" after Discovery Basin announced it would open Saturday as well. 

Great Divide will also be open  from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday.

Lift tickets are $30 for the full day or $10 per hour anytime. E-TIX are also available online for $20 if purchased by 8 am on the day of arrival at www.skigd.com/etix.

"We hope you can help us make history again (Lots of really early openings and May closings in recent years) with our November 10th ski day this Saturday," Great Divide said on Facebook.

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Reporter Tom Kuglin can be reached at 447-4076 @IR_TomKuglin

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