This season has been a bit disappointing so far in most parts of North America. While I do not intend to gloss over the fact that most of us are bummed out about the relative lack of snow (and lack of cold temps for resorts to make snow), I do want to highlight that regardless of the conditions on any given day, skiing and snowboarding are freaking awesome.
Things are not all bad! First of all, regardless of the conditions skiing and snowboarding is always fun. Fundamentally speaking these activities are things we choose to do in our free time because we enjoy them, and as someone who grew up skiing in the rain, on ice, and in my fair share of the dreaded wintry mix, I can assure you that it is still worth going skiing even if it is not as pristine as we romanticize.
In many places the skiing is actually quite good, and in others it is quickly getting better. Areas like Mt. Bachelor the Pacific Northwest, Revelstoke in British Columbia, and Alyeska in Alaska have been receiving some great snow. This is also true for many of our resort friends in the Southwest like Taos and Angel Fire, and we recently heard from Sun Valley that the snow has picked up substantially. We even heard from Crystal Mountain in Michigan that they opened 90% of their terrain this weekend.
Some other interesting data points that prove that skiing, no matter the conditions, is worth it:
- Liftopia customers skied 37% more days in December 2011 than in December 2010 (you guys are a hearty bunch, way to make the most of it!)
- Deer Valley reports that they sold out (!) of lift tickets during several days of Christmas week
- Despite the snow, there have already been just shy of 1.5mm searches on Liftopia for skiing this season
- 100% of folks writing about how bad the snow need to recognize that even the worst ski conditions foster awesome times with friends and family
We are all incredibly fortunate to be able to get out to the mountain and enjoy them, so let’s enjoy this winter in whatever form it takes.