SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (May 3, 2004) – Ski Utah, the marketing arm of theUtah Ski Association, today reported that the state’s 13 ski areas saw arecord number of skier days during the 2003-04 winter season (theNational Ski Areas Association defines skier days as one person visitinga ski area for all or any part of a day or night for the purpose ofskiing or snowboarding). Official numbers totaled 3,386,141 for theseason ending May, 2004.

Early and consistent snowfall throughout the season, combined withincreased marketing efforts and resort infrastructure improvements,fueled the busiest season in Utah’s 65-year skiing history.

“While Mother Nature certainly provided great snow conditions, thedollars spent on advertising and resort improvements made the differencethis year,” said Ski Utah President Kip Pitou. “We’re known for havingconsistent and exceptional snow quality, so having great ski conditionsdoesn’t have the impact one might expect. Leading up to the OlympicsUtah resorts spent over $250 million dollars in resort improvements.Everything from new chairlifts and snowmaking equipment to improved baselodges and daycare facilities – all geared toward improving the ski andsnowboard experience for years to come. We’re finally seeing thoseinvestments pay off.”

Total skier days for the 2003-04 ski and snowboard season totaled3,386,141, a 7 percent increase over last season and 3 percent betterthan 2000-01, Utah’s previous record season. Utah’s Summit County skiareas (Deer Valley Resort, Park City Mountain Resort and The CanyonsResort) saw a combined record for the second year in a row with visitstotaling 1,418,345, a 5 percent gain over last year. Total skier daysfor the past 10 years are as follows:

Season Skier Days Rank
2003-04 3,386,141 1
2002-03 3,141,212 3
2001-02 2,984,574 8
2000-01 3,278,291 2
1999-00 2,959,778 9
1998-99 3,095,347 6
1997-98 3,101,735 5
1996-97 3,042,767 7
1995-96 2,954,690 10
1994-95 3,113,072 4

Utah’s official ski season continues through Memorial Day, May 31, atSnowbird Ski & Summer Resort where skiers and riders are currentlyenjoying a 95-inch base. Summer operations at many other Utah resortsbegin as early as Friday, May 21.For interview opportunities with Ski Utah President Kip Pitou, pleasecontact Nathan Rafferty at (801) 534-1779. Information on Utah’s 13mountain resorts can be found at www.skiutah.com.###