Period one skier visits up 18.35% compared to 12/01
Period one skier visits up 2.62% compared to 12/00
DENVER, COLO., January 14, 2003 -- In the first of three reports tabulating skier visits for the state of Colorado, the nation’s capitol of winter sports, skier visits increased 18.35% over last year to a total of 2,912,801, announced Rob Perlman, President and CEO of Colorado Ski Country USA today.
Skier visits are the metric used to track participation in skiing and snowboarding, a significant portion of Colorado tourism, which is the second largest industry in the state behind manufacturing. A skier visit represents a person participating in the sport of skiing or snowboarding for any part of one day at a mountain resort. Colorado Ski Country USA is the trade association representing the largest ski state in the US with its 24 member resorts contributing approximately 11.5 million skier visits or more than 20% to the nation’s 50+ million skier visits each year.
Contributing to the best first period results in more than five years was the above average snowfall throughout the state in early November 2002 which allowed many of the resorts to push up their opening dates and offer additional terrain and facilities and a strong Christmas holiday period. The abundant snowfall continued during the months of November and December while resort operators saw an increase in season pass sales as the result of the pent up demand for more typical snow conditions than have been seen in recent years.
Additionally, the resorts worked collaboratively during the early season to promote the state’s optimal snow conditions in a strong public relations effort. Several resorts also surpassed records in terms of skier visits during the first part of the season.
“Although our first period results are on pace with 1997-98, which was a record season for the state at nearly 12 million skier visits, and 12% ahead of our five-year average, we are cautiously optimistic about the remainder of the season looking at the current economic and political landscape,” said Perlman. “All things considered what a better way to escape those stresses than a trip with family and friends to Colorado, home to 24 of the finest mountain resorts in the world with some really good snow right now” he added.
Skier visits are tracked in three groupings: Destination resorts*, Front Range Destination resorts** and Front Range resorts***. Compared to this time last season, Destination resorts hosted 877,831 skier visits (or a 18.27 percent increase), Front Range Destination resorts hosted 1,849,763 skier visits (or a 18.28 percent increase), while Front Range hosted 185,207 skier visits (or a 19.52 percent increase). The following is a chart with the resort category break-outs.
Resort Category: 2002/03 2001/02 % Change 2000/01 % Change
Destination: 877,831 742,247 18.27% 884,512 -0.76%
Front Range Dest: 1,849,763 1,563,930 18.28% 1,784,645 3.65%
Front Range: 185,207 154,956 19.52% 169,147 9.49%
Total: 2,912,801 2,461,133 18.35% 2,838,304 2.62%
*Destination Resorts: Aspen Highlands, Aspen Mountain, Buttermilk, Crested Butte, Durango Mountain Resort, Howelsen, Monarch, Powderhorn, Silverton Mountain, Snowmass, Steamboat, Sunlight, Telluride and Wolf Creek.
**Front Range Destination Resorts: Arapahoe Basin, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge, Copper Mountain, Keystone, SolVista, Vail and Winter Park
***Front Range Resorts: Eldora, Loveland and Ski Cooper