Smart Money has an article entitled 10 Things Ski Resorts Won’t Tell You. I read it and this is my response, to those points I feel are worth responding to.
Point number four in the article is entitled “Only suckers pay full price”. I strongly disagree with the wording, noting those who are occasional skiers pay full price. Even then that may not be the case. Most any operation offers discounts to those willing to pay ahead of time as well as discounted lift tickets offered by the local hospitality industry. @Snow_Skiiing on twiter says:
“Ski Industry Secrets”. 4. Running a ski area is expensive-staff, electricity, insurance. Full price tix sales are critical to stay around
and while I agree with the thrust that running a ski resort is an expensive proposition, I would have to say that no ski resort will sell a lift ticket for less than its operational costs. That is, discounted tickets will pay for the resort’s operation. Selling discounted tickets in advance is a good way to understand how much people will be visiting your resort and allows you to plan. People who show up and buy their lift tickets at the resort the day they ski are called cream. They form a nicer profit than the regulars.
Do suckers pay full price? No, only those who may ski once or twice per year. People like myself will not pay full price regularly because I ski often and plan ahead. However, if I go to a ski resort on a spur of the moment whim, then I just may pay full price.
The point five of the article about ski instructors needing lessons themselves is kinda silly. I don’t expect ski instructors to be educational professionals and the instance noted in the article is what that is about. Poor instructional methodology, the instructor did not understand their student’s needs and was more concerned to get some good skiing in themselves.
Point seven is about injuries. Skiing can be injurious no one should be shocked about that. One thing I have noted is the incidence of leg fractures is way down, but the price paid for that is an increase of knee sprains (read ACL & MCL tears). The article tries to blame the resorts by claiming groomed runs are leading to faster skiing and more knee injuries but I have heard more than once about people blowing their knee apart while standing still. This is an area where one can hope some future innovation can have a positive impact upon. However, I don’t go to the ski hill assuming it is completely safe.
Point eight is about scenic trails — which appears to be more about tree skiing. Consider tree skiing the domain of experts. If you are not an expert skier stay out of the trees. Even then, tree skiing is hazardous. I’m sure the surface of tree runs is less regular and one bump can put even good skiers out of control (even if for a moment). If you decide to give it a run take it very easy and I suggest traversing the slope widely staying far from the fall line. Better yet, if you want to ski around things, I suggest skiing NASTAR and skiing around gates.
If it really is about narrow trails through the woods, then most people should KNOW there is little room for error. I consider myself a good skier and do not venture onto them because I like to ski fast and get some good long carves in.
Characterize the article as coming from a writer on a deadline with no ideas.