Steamboat Springs Steamboat Ski Area shuttles trolled Central Park Plaza on Saturday as part of a makeshift overflow parking plan enacted after skiers and snowboarders filled the Knoll and Meadows lots to capacity.
"We did have to send some people to park at Wal-Mart, but that's just a temporary solution for today," Steamboat Ski and Resort Corp. spokeswoman Heidi Thomsen said. "We don't plan to do that again."
Ski area parking was significantly reduced earlier this month with the construction of a special events tent in the Upper Knoll lot. The tent will come down in about two weeks, after the MusicFest, Ski Jam, Family Snow Festival, and Country in the Rockies events have all concluded.
Ski area officials will be working on an overflow parking plan for next weekend, when crowds on the mountain are expected to be even larger than Saturday and today, Thomsen said.
"We're looking at different options - we know next (weekend) is not only Family Snow Festival weekend at the tent, it's also Martin Luther King, Jr. weekend," Thomsen said.
Thomsen urged vacationers to take available lodging shuttles, and locals to use public transportation to get to the ski area whenever possible.
"For the next two weeks while the tent is up : if people could take a ride on the free bus or carpool, that would be great," Thomsen said.
Recent snowfall likely contributed to the busy weekend - as of Saturday afternoon, 55 inches of snow had been recorded at the ski area in the past three days.
But those hoping for more powder this week are likely to be disappointed. Sunny weather with little precipitation is expected.
"Every couple of days, there's a slight chance of snow, which means the mountain might get a total of a half-inch or an inch," said meteorologist Chris Cuoco from the National Weather Service's station in Grand Junction. "Steamboat proper might not even get a dusting."