New Mexico ski resorts see near record-breaking year

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – So far this winter, we have seen blizzards, towns buried, and more frequent snow storms. While some hope it never snows again, other places in New Mexico are benefiting from it.

Every ski resort is seeing an increase in business. The slopes are packed, the powder is fresh and the money is flowing in.

“Our busiest week of the year is the week after Christmas and we had a huge week. But, January, this has been the best January I’ve seen ever,” said Ben Abruzzo, Ski Santa Fe Area Manager.

The snow has caused a big surge in business for Ski Santa Fe. With more than 160 inches of snow so far this season, it’s no wonder skiers and snowboarders from around the country chose Ski Santa Fe.

“[We’ve] never been here before. We wanted to go someplace that had a lot of powder,” said Rick and Helen Anderson, of Texas.

The Andersons have helped visitation increase 43-percent and revenue increase 37-percent from last year. Representatives say the last time they saw a season like this was during the 2000-2001 season.

You can bet that if Ski Santa Fe is having a near record breaking year, their ski shop is doing just as well.

“This year has been very busy. It’s been cold and the snow has been awesome. You combine all that and the ski shop gets really, really busy,” said Scott Hussion, Sports Shop Manager.

At Pajarito Mountain, representatives say their goal every year is to open around Christmas. This year they exceeded that. It could even be the first time in a while that they’ve been able to open this early.

“We were able to make snow earlier, make more of it and we were able to open starting Thanksgiving. Since then, we just see the momentum continuing at Pajarito,” said Stacey Glaser, Marketing Director at Pajarito Mountain and Sipapu.

More snow means more great attractions for skiers and boarders at Sipapu.

“We have opened our two organic terrain parks. They are New Mexico’s only organic terrain parks made entirely of mountain and natural features,” said Glaser.

Ski New Mexico says every ski resort in New Mexico could see record years, too. Taos Ski Valley says this year was the best opening they’ve had in 20 years. In Colorado, Purgatory saw a 33-percent increase in visits from last year.

Officials say even a 1-percent uptick in visitors over last year could result in a $1.5 million increase in revenue for ski resorts.

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