Why Does the Ski Season End?
At the beginning of this season I wrote a post called, “FIrst Resort to Open a Boon or Bust?” and now that we’re getting closer to the end of the ski season I’d like to think a little about the other end of the season – closing day. For many ski resorts, this year is a tough one for setting their scheduled closing day in that Easter, a traditional holiday towards the end of the season, falls as late as it ever does, on April 24. For many resorts, it would be really pushing it to stay open that late, so they have set their scheduled closing date to prior to Easter. Why would that be “pushing it”? Well, there are many factors that go into setting a “scheduled closing date” and while I can honestly say that I don’t have intimate knowledge of the process, I know that these are some that come to mind:
- Average snow settled depth and temperatures at that time
- Expense of keeping resort operations running until that time
- The amount of potential earning vs resort expenses – potential profit
- Lease dates of public and/or private land
- Ability to keep seasonal employees on staff
- Other seasonal activities in the area (are people ready for the golf courses)
- Possible positive PR value of staying open later than other resorts (or possible negative PR value of having to adjust a scheduled closing date earlier)
There certainly are probably a bunch of other factors that I haven’t listed, but I do think that these are some of the more important ones for most ski resorts, and oh yeah, it’s always good to make sure your resort has a nice spring tradition like pond skiing to close things out with!
Photo credit: Flickr user Zach Dischner