Utah ski and snowboard industry announced 3,802,536 million skier day visits during the 2011-12 winter season, down 10 percent from the previous season’s 4,223,064. The 2010-11 season was Utah’s second best season on record only a hair short from the 2007-08 season, which recorded 4,249,190 skier days.
Low snow totals plaguing resorts nationwide and the persistence of a wavering economy are credited for the decrease at Utah ski and snowboard resorts this season. As snow totals have accumulated well above the state’s 500 annual inch average the past four seasons, this year’s below average snowfall was all the more difficult for powder lovers to endure. Despite the downturn, Ski Utah is confident awareness and demand for the Utah wintersport product is headed on a positive trajectory. Utah skier day visits performed quite well in comparison to the national average down 15% from last season according to the National Ski Area Association.
"Utah ski and snowboard resorts did an exceptional job compensating for the lack of early season snow with a record level of snowmaking", noted Ski Utah President Nathan Rafferty. "Unfortunately, by the time Mother Nature joined the effort many consumers had already turned their attention away from skiing and snowboarding".
Ski Utah also observed that while participation in on-snow activities declined this season many complementary businesses, such as restaurants and shops, reported steady to strong business indicating many visitors supplemented their vacations with other activities.
For a complete history of Utah’s skier days visit http://www.skiutah.com/media/story_starters/utah-skier-days-table.
Ski Utah is the marketing firm owned and operated by the 14 statewide ski resorts that make up the Utah Ski and Snowboard Association (Alta Ski Area, Beaver Mountain, Brian Head Resort, Brighton Resort, Canyons Resort, Deer Valley Resort, Eagle Point, Park City Mountain Resort, Powder Mountain Resort, Snowbasin Resort, Snowbird Ski and Summer Resort, Solitude Mountain Resort, Sundance and Wolf Mountain). The organization has been creating brand awareness of and demand for the Utah wintersports product since its inception in 1978.