With predictions of warm weather this winter, many Montana ski resorts are preparing for what may be a very difficult season. Despite the forecasts, Discovery Ski Resort Spokesman Ciche Pitcher says they are hoping to be up and running next week.

"We've been getting a fair amount of snow through early November and we'd really like to open on Thanksgiving Day," Pitcher said. "We're still waiting to see what the weather is going to do this week both in terms of temperature and, more critically, snowfall. We've got grooming machines running today and hopefully that will help us get open."

Pitcher says the El Nino weather pattern is likely to bring poor snowfall, but they are hoping for the best.

"The El Nino prediction is, generally, a bad one for us," Pitcher said. When there is a strong El Nino, in general the temperature will be warmer and there is less precipitation. One of the tough things about being in the skiing business is there's not much you can do about the weather. Right now, the probability of less snowfall is greater than the probability of more snowfall."

Pitcher says that right now, they have eight inches of snow at the base of Discovery and about a foot on top. If Discovery is open on Thanksgiving, visitors will be able to see a new mountainside yurt

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