Top Five Fridays - August 21, 2015 // Ski Industry News
#1: Another Indoor Snow Village Planned in Middle Eastern Country:
Just the other week we found out about a huge new indoor skiing center in Dubai. This week, we learned of an entire indoor snow village in Muscat, the capital of Middle Eastern Country Oman. The snow village will be a part of the Palm Mall shopping center- a huge complex aimed at increasing tourism and commerce in the country’s capital. While the indoor snow village will likely have an area of skiing and snowboarding, the ambitious plan hopes to bring way more Winter recreation to the desert region. Concept images and animations of the village depict curling, bumper cars on ice, hockey, various forms of sledding, and of course- snowmobile racing (which we hope utilizes some sort of quiet, electric motor). The project is already underway and is expected to be completed by 2017.
#2: Sun Peaks Continues to Expand with New Terrain and Ideas:
Locals of Sun Peaks have to be excited with the trajectory that their mountains’ been taking in recent years. After adding over 500 acres of terrain of backcountry terrain to their trail maps last season, Sun Peaks is continuing their growth by adding new expert trails on West Morrisey mountain. The new trails are in anticipation of a future chairlift. In addition to opening new terrain and trails, Sun Peaks is also challenging the status quo by offering guided backcountry tours that are meant to teach new skills to skiers, as well as show them around some of the best backcountry terrain the mountain has to offer. Additionally, the resort plans to offer new courses for teenagers who want to learn more powder skiing and terrain park skills. With all of these new plans in place for the 2015-2016 season, it’s safe to say that its a great time to be a Sun Peaks local!
#3: Powder Paradise Revelstoke Adds Terrain Parks for 2015-2016:
Speaking of Canadian ski resort expansions, Revelstoke has officially announced that they’ll be adding a full terrain park to the mountain for the 2015-2016 season! This news comes after the success of a late season terrain park that the resort briefly opened last April. Known primarily as a powder skier’s paradise, it’s great to see that Revelstoke isn’t holding back on their terrain park plans. Located directly under “The Stoke” chairlift, the terrain park aims to be about 450 meters long, and will incorporate a full jump line as well as a plethora of rail features. While we don’t want to set the bar too high for the resort’s park in its opening year, it is exciting to see that a resort like Revelstoke sees the value in having terrain park. With such a wide variety of open backcountry terrain, it’ll be exciting to see what the addition of a terrain park at Revelstoke will result in.
#4: Vail Continues Domination of the Ski Industry with New Chairlift Tracking App:
It seems as though we mention Vail for a different reason every few weeks. First it was their acquisition of Persher Resort in Australia that got our attention. Then, it was the announcement that Vail would officially combine Utah’s Park City and Canyon’s resort into one mountain. Now, this week, we’re sharing the news that Vail has made a potentially game changing addition to their EpicMix app. Now, using this app, skiers and snowboarders at Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge, and Keystone will be able to check in on lift line wait times from anywhere on the mountain. The app uses a new technology called EpicMix Time to calculate and display wait time data. Love it or hate it, Vail is continuing to dominate and pioneer the ski resort industry, and we’re sure they’ll have more news for us soon enough!
#5: And Now, the Edit of the Week:
This week's edit of the week is bittersweet. Sweet, because the skiing in it is incredible. Bitter, because Matt Heffernan, the skier laying it on the line in the above shots, unfortunately passed away last week in Utah. While we didn't know Matt personally, it's more than obvious that he was extremely well liked and highly respected by an enormous network of friends. Of course as the evidence shows above, Matt was also one of the rare types of freeskiers who could do it all, from rails on a glacier to huge backcountry lines and chutes. As with all tragedies, it's worth it to try and find a silver lining. In this case, it can be found in knowing that Matt went out on top, doing something he loved. You can find out more about the circumstances of his passing, as well as more about who he was as a person in this great writeup from Henrik Lampert posted over at Freeskier.com.