Good morning! Its April 10th – a day after the ski area has closed for the season – and my phone is ringing with rumors that skier visits for the 2005-2006 season cracked the 400,000 mark. If this is indeed true I am very impressed. The published goal of 600,000 skier visits doesn’t seem that far away – incredible to think where we were a few years back when it was pretty much all locals racking up the skier days.
We had a good snow year, consistently soft throughout the entire season. When there wasn’t new snow, the grooming was the best I’ve experienced on this mountain – ever. The regional and national marketing effort was noticeably improved – it seems to me that the ski company is well on their way to crafting a new brand and enhanced image. It takes multiple years to build or in this case rebuild a brand and company image. The ski company is essentially in their second year and they are already competitive in the marketplace and demonstrating the necessary prowess to sustain their mission.
The ski hill did feel a little crowded at times throughout the season. Lift lines weren’t the real problem…just skiers of all ability levels and velocity were coming together more often in the typically congested areas of the mountain. Skiing with children most of the time was a little nerve-wracking to say the least. Transitioning from 400,000 skier visits a season to the next goal of 600,000 will require some creative on hill skier management and risk mitigation. I am sure the ski company will figure it out and Crested Butte will continue to deliver a great ski experience.
Since my information is unofficial we will wait to get a press release or read an article in the Crested Butte News about our seasons economic perfomances!
Thanks for visiting,