Top Five Fridays June 19, 2015 // Ski Industry News
#1: Record Ski Season on the East
East Coasters might’ve had a feeling that this past season was one for the record book, but now it’s official. This past week, both Ski New Hampshire and Ski Vermont released their annual reports which each list a host of stats about skier visits and snowfall from this past year. In Vermont, there were 4.67 Million skier and rider visits to resorts, topping the previous record set back in 2001. In New Hampshire, the results were similar with 2.31 Million visits, making it their fourth best season ever. With a sport so dependent on snow for success, it’s widely accepted that the volume of visitors is directly related to the amount of natural snow which provided adequate coverage from late fall through late Spring.
#2: Mom and Pop Ski Resort for Sale in Oregon
Currently looking to buy a ski resort, or even a second home? Then you might want to take a look at Spout Springs in Oregon which just went on the market for a cool $1.25 million. Before balking at the price, consider these factors: Spout Springs comes with approximately 1,411 acres, two double chairlifts, lighting for night skiing, a fully stocked rental shop, a 9,418 sf base lodge, and even a 3,500 sf owner’s unit. For $1.25 million? That’s not bad. If you were in New York City, you’d find that same price tag on a 1,350 sf, 3 Bed / 2 Bath home.
#3: 2014/2015 Ski Season Official Ends
Well, we can officially put the last nail in the coffin of the 2014/2015 along with a tombstone that reads: June 14, 2015. That’s the last day that the last open resort, Arapahoe Basin, let their chairlifts run. It’s a bit of a surprise to a lot of skiers as Arapahoe Basin, much like the rest of the West Coast, was battling heat waves in February that threatened their base of snow. But after surviving the mid Winter thaw, Arapahoe Basin was blessed with a series of late season snow storms that provided them the coverage needed to be the last ski resort open in North America this season. Congrats A-Basin!
#4: Wolf Creek Land Swap Lands Approval Despite Controversy
Whether you’re a conservationist or a super rich person, here’s some news that’s sure to grab your attention. Back in 1986, B.J. “Red” McCombs acquired about 300 acres on Wolf Creek Pass from the Forest Service. At the time, his plan was to develop the area, building a village resort. There was one problem though- there aren’t any main roads connecting to the land, meaning it would be nearly impossible for visitors to make it to the resort. So, back in 2010, McCombs proposed a second land exchange with the Forest Service that would give him a clear path to a highway, allowing him to create access for his visitors.
After pushing through his fair share of controversy, McCombs has finally had his land exchange request approved. Dan Dallas, the man responsible for ultimately approving the request, has said that his hands were essentially tied by the Alaska National Interest Land Conservation Act of 1980, which states that the federal government is required to allow access to private land holdings in a National Forest. Dallas also reviewed McCombs original land exchange with the Forest Service and found evidence that creating a resort at Wolf Creek Pass was always a part of the plan. So without any legal leverage, Dallas ultimately had no ability to deny McCombs request. In something of a concession to the Environmentalists, Dallas did make sure the National Forest obtained a fragile environment, while giving McCombs access to land that could withstand construction of a road.
#5: And Now, the Edit of the Week:
This week, a Freeskier from Utah named Marcus Caston released a POV season edit that presents a strong argument in favor of skiing actually being a religious experience. If you’ve never heard of the man, don’t be ashamed but prepare to be impressed. Over the course of four and a half minutes, Marcus shreds big lines, drops cliffs, avoids avalanches, and even dons a pair of snow blades to flaunt his moves in the terrain park.
It’s your lucky Friday. Instead of just one, we have two edits of the week this time around! This edit might not have the most extreme line you’ve ever seen, but it’s still a good one and the video game effects makes us wonder what our high score could’ve been this year. How long do you think, until Smith releases a video game app for their Recon goggles?