Pyrenees slopes open for rare June ski weekend

PORTE-PUYMORENS, France (AP) — The still-white slopes in the Pyrenees of southern France opened for business this past weekend and they are expected to open again next weekend, turning a cold wet spring into a rare opportunity for skiing in June.

The Porte-Puymorens ski station opened Saturday morning at 8 a.m. for four hours in fog and light rain — but plenty of snow with temperatures just above freezing.

The slopes normally close for the season on April 1 but are expected to re-open again next weekend, station director Eric Charre said. Sales were limited to just over 600 tickets per day, and Charre said both days sold out.

"In the history of Pyrenees skiing, there have never been slopes open in June," he said. Charre said the snowpack averaged 80 centimeters (31 inches) in the areas open this weekend.

Porte-Puymorens is near the border with Spain and Andorra, about 800 kilometers (500 miles) south of Paris.