The Colorado skiing season makes up an important part of the Colorado economy. Tourism is the second largest industry in the state, and the ski industry makes up a huge portion of that tourism business.
Tourism In Colorado
Last year more than 12.5 million skiers and snowboarders visited Colorado. That’s 21% of all skier visits in the United States. The prospects of employment in the tourism business look good well into the future, with the Colorado skiing season providing a healthy boost to the economy. .
The tourism business divides the Colorado skiing season into two portions: the First Period, from October 13 through December 31, and the Second Period, from January 1 until the end of the season. This year, 3,285,649 skiers and snowboarders visited Colorado ski resorts during the first season. That’s a 6.74 increase over last season’s First Period, which was itself a record breaker. These increases occurred despite extreme conditions that delayed flights and closed airports in Colorado.
Colorado is blessed with numerous ski resorts to accommodate the entire Colorado skiing season. The Gem resorts include Arapahoe Basin, Echo Mountain, Eldora, Loveland, Monarch, Powderhorn, Ski Cooper, SolVista Basin, and Sunlight. For three years in a row, First Period tourist counts in the Colorado Gem locales have been ahead of their five-year average.
Colorado’s destination resorts add glamour and excitement to the Colorado skiing season. Aspen Highlands, Aspen Mountain, Buttermilk, Crested Butte, Durango, Howelsen Hill, Silverton Mountain, Snowmass, Wolf Creek, Telluride, and Steamboat, are among the destination ski resorts that saw an increase of 11.9% in tourism.
One of the things that makes the Colorado skiing season so great is the special promotions that the resorts run. Crested Butte Mountain Resort, for example, offers free skiing and snowboarding from November 25 through December 15. For ten years, Keystone has sponsored an annual 10K snowshoe race, where participants walk, jog or run in the moonlight above the timberline.
The Colorado skiing season also attracts world-class ski events, like the Chevrolet U.S. Snowboard Grand Prix at Breckenridge and the Surefoot Colorado Ski Cup Men’s/Women’s Super G and Giant Slalom competition at Winter Park. Winter Park also hosts the United States Disabled Ski Team, where the world’s best disabled skiers compete with able-bodied ski teams in giant slalom and super G events.
The Colorado skiing season is so special because of Colorado’s unique geography, filled with mountains. These mountains form a spectacular backdrop for every ski run. It is no wonder the Colorado skiing season is so popular worldwide.