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Big Storms Are Good News For Colorado Ski Resorts

Jeremy Swanson
Colorado Ski Country USA
A snowboarder enjoys the powder at Aspen Snowmass

The big storm that blanketed Colorado with snow this week made for a rough commute for drivers. Now, it’s going to lure them to the mountains. And the timing of the storm wasn’t bad for Colorado’s ski country. It hit on a Wednesday afternoon, meaning that by the time the weekend hits, all that powdery, soft snow will be on the minds of skiers and snowboarders.

And that’s good news for resort owners. Up to 20 inches fell on the resort mountains along the Interstate 70 corridor. Mountains elsewhere reported at least another 6 inches.

“This just has a great impact for our ski areas, in terms of getting folks up there, and also continuing to open up more and more terrain, as resorts are at or getting close to 100 percent open,” said Chris Linsmayer, the public affairs manager with Colorado Ski Country U.S.A., a trade association that represents 22 ski areas.

The warmer, sunny forecast for the weekend is a perfect storm for a surge of skiers and snowboarders: “The ski industry generates a $4.8 billion annual economic impact, comprising a significant portion of the state’s tourism and recreation sectors and supporting a sizeable share of the employment and tax base in Colorado’s mountainous regions.”

Despite a trend of warm days last fall and December, Linsmayer says most of the state is at or above normal snowpack levels. That means if the weather trends keep up, the industry will rake in solid revenue for the 2016-2017 season.

Link to the snow report below, (which changes a few times a day)