Where cold means business - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

By Crystal Oko

Where cold means business

WELCH, MN (FOX 47) -- Whether you like winter or not, today's temperatures seemed rather bareable. While many of us will hold on to the warmth, others depend on Minnesota's cold.

"Find something you love to do outside and you will love winter," said Merry Morris, a ski patrol at Welch Village.

And for Morris, it's the slopes.

"I just got passionate about it. It's so refreshing. You get the speed involved. You get the technical skill involved, the winter air, the pretty environment. Why can't you love it?," said Morris.

"You really get into the fact that it's winter and you can really enjoy winter. It's not a time to dread winter. It's a time to really come up to winter and say let's go," said Leigh Nelson, the owner of Welch Village.

And at Welch Village Ski and Snowboard Area, winter is their business. But winter can sometimes be unpredictable.

"It's supposed to get down to about 25 tonight. That'll be good enough for making snow. We make the best snow if it's 20 or less. If it's 20 degrees to 10 degrees, then we can pump all of our capacity of water in the river that we've got and we can make about 4 feet of snow in about 5 days on all 120 acres," said Nelson.

They hope to do this before opening on the 28th. And this year's opening is very special.

"It's black and back. It's all black runs. It means they're the more expert runs," said Nelson.

Welch Village is opening the "Back Bowl," this season, a new set of runs.

"We have about 120 acres of slopes on this side of the operation. Back there we'll add another 40 acres of slopes. So it's quite an expansion," said Nelson.

But for now, the snow machines wait for temperatures to dip.

"The guns are in place and ready to go and the pumps have all been checked out. So we're ready to fly as soon as the cold weather comes," said Nelson.

"Back Bowl" runs will only be open to members.

But at the end of January, everyone can enjoy the new slopes.

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