By Jason Blevins, Denver Post
Vail Resorts on Friday assigned numbers to the so-far-anecdotal evidence that the slow start to the season is pinching the resort industry.
The continent’s largest ski resort operator showed steep declines in spending and visitation at its network of North American ski resorts. Ski-school revenue through the first week of January was down 4.5 percent compared to last season. Retail sales were down 11.5 percent. Skier visits to Vail Resorts’ 11 destination ski areas in Colorado, California, Utah, Vermont and British Columbia were down 10.8 percent.
Still, thanks to skiers and snowboarders buying nearly 750,000 Epic Passes for 2017-18, the company’s season-pass sales revenue was up 1.6 percent compared to the same period last season. In early December, the company reported that Epic Pass sales were up 14 percent in units and 20 percent in revenue compared to the previous season.