Top Five Fridays - May 15, 2015 // Ski Industry News
We’re going to try something new over here at Chairlift Chat with a new series we all “Top 5 Fridays”! Every Friday we’re going to bring you the top five news items in the world of skiing from the previous week. Sound good? Great. Let’s get started!
#1: 5 North American Ski Resorts Still Open This Weekend
Looking to sneak in a few last turns before the season’s over? If you’re in Vermont, Colorado, California, Oregon, or British Columbia, then you’re in luck! There’s still at least one ski resort scheduled to open this weekend in each of these areas. While it’ll obviously be Spring conditions, it should still be fun getting in some nice slushy turns!
Resorts Scheduled to Open: Arapahoe Basin Ski Area (Colorado), Killington Resort (Vermont), Mammoth Mountain Ski Area (California), Timberline Lodge (Oregon), Sunshine Village (Banff, CAN), and Whislter/Blackcomb (British Columbia, CAN)
#2: Gondolas Solving Gridlock in Indonesia
London's Urban Gondola: The Air Line over the River Thames
Any skier who lives in a major city knows the pain of gridlock traffic. If you hop on the highway at the wrong time of day, what should be a 10 minute drive easily turns into a 30-45 minute ordeal. Turns out, Indonesians know the struggle too, which is why they’ve come up with a unique solution to the problem. In the city of Bandung, city planners have approved a plan to implement a Gondola to connect the two major shopping areas of the city. It’s estimated that what’s typically a 30 minute trip could be cut down to just 4 minutes, not to mention the reduction emissions resulting from less traffic. Which leads us to the next news item:
#3: Ski Towns Push Government to Increase Royalties on Land Use by Coal Companies
As a skier, you’re probably well aware of the incredibly low snowfall that many West Coast resorts suffered this season. The impacts of this low snow fall mean more than just less powder days- many ski towns across the West Coast depend on having great snow for their economic livelihood. No snowfall means less tourism, and ultimately a deprived economy. That’s the reason why almost a dozen ski towns recently sent a letter to the U.S. Department of the Interior, asking them to close loop holes that allow companies who mine for coal on public land (which, many ski resorts lease land from), to pay just 4.9% royalties on their profits rather than the 8-12.5% that’s legally required. It’s a complicated issue, but the goal of the increased royalties is to increase the cost of coal and slow down the demand, ultimately slowing down the climate change that many blame for the lack of snowfall this season.
You can find out more about the issue here: http://www.usnews.com/news/articles/2015/05/11/ski-towns-mull-future-without-skiing-and-put-coal-in-the-crosshairs
And you can read the letter that was sent to the Interior Department here: http://www.themountainpact.org/interior-letter
#4: Want to See How Skis are Made?
Ever wonder how a pair of skis are made? Well, last night an episode of the Science Channel’s “How It’s Made” aired, featuring a segment on Colorado’s Meier Skis. As with all of the show’s episodes, last night’s show took us inside the Meier ski factory to show us their manufacturing process. The show is set to re-air today at 12 PM EST, and again tomorrow (Saturday May 16th) at 10:30 AM EST.
You can also watch the Meier Ski segment here: http://www.sciencechannel.com/tv-shows/how-its-made/videos/handcrafted-skis/
#5: And Now, the Edit of the Week:
Written by Matt McGinnis on 5/15/15