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Ski Industry Rebounds In 2012-13; Posts 11 Percent Gains


What a difference a year makes. Leaders of the ski industry were told today at the National Ski Areas Association Convention and Trade Show in Palm Springs, Calif. that skier and snowboarder visits jumped by 11 percent year-over-year. 


That’s the biggest percentage increase in 30 years. The numbers are preliminary as several resorts remain open, but they won’t change much, if anything. The industry tallied 56.6 million skiers and riders this season, despite a slow start in some parts of the country. 


Many ski areas enjoyed a strong Christmas holiday period and equally solid participation during Presidents’ Day and through March. In fact, 78 percent of ski resorts reporting posted increases, with the median number put at 10.6 percent gains.


Visits were up in all regions with the biggest rebounds in the Pacific Southwest, up 20.5 percent. The Northeast was up 20.3 percent; Southeast up 17.2 percent; Midwest up 11.5 percent; Pacific Northwest up 7.5 percent; and Rocky Mountains up 1.9 percent.


Attendance nationally was up in every segment of the season, though the biggest gains were registered toward the end.


Christmas holiday attendance was up 16 percent, reflecting the low-snow time period last year. A final “End of Season Survey,” called the Kottke Report, will be issued in July.


Photo: Breckenridge, Colo. 

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