Welcome!

News Feed Item

2013/14 Mid-Season Ski Industry Update: Spotty Weather Creates 'Haves' and 'Have-nots'

MARTINSVILLE, N.J., Feb. 4, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Thus far, the 2013/14 ski/snowboard season has seen widely divergent performance across regions.  Some areas have enjoyed robust snowfall and cold temperatures, while others are suffering from a historic dearth of precipitation.  Against this backdrop, we reduce our forecast for total skier visits and now see low-to-mid single digit percentage gains over last year, or 58 to 60 million visits.

Much of the northeast U.S. has seen frigid temperatures and enjoyed several snowstorms so far this season, benefiting resorts in the region, particularly those in New York.  In Colorado and Utah, solid snowfall totals have also blanketed resorts.  However, in California and the Pacific Northwest, conditions have been poor.  California's 25 ski resorts have seen the lowest amount of snowfall since the 1971/72 season.  Mammoth Mountain, the third largest resort in the U.S. by number of visitors, has received just 48 inches of snow so far this year, compared to a 400 inch yearly average, and only has half of its 28 lifts turning.  According to data from the California Department of Water Resources, the state's snowpack is only 12% of what would be considered normal for this time of the year.  Since the department began collecting data in 1960, the previous record low was 21% of normal, which was registered in 1991.  This hardship extends north through Washington and into British Columbia, Canada.  Whistler Blackcomb, the region's flagship resort, has received only 121 inches of snow so far this season, which compares to a 10-year average of about 275 inches. 

Due to this, resorts in California have experienced declines of up to 50% in skier visits.  The aforementioned Mammoth Mountain has forecasted 950,000 skier visits this season, down from an average of 1.3 million.  On the other hand, through December, resorts in Colorado have seen a 22% increase in visits, according to Colorado Ski Country USA.  Visits in the state are now tracking 6.7% above the 5-year average as early snowfall allowed many mountains to open more terrain earlier in the season.  Vail Resorts, which owns a portfolio of ski areas across the U.S., recently reported that its overall skier visits were down 0.7% year-over-year, through January 5th.  Although its properties in Utah and Colorado were up 7.4%, its properties in the Lake Tahoe area saw a sharp 23.4% decline.  The resiliency in its headline figure displays the advantages of having a geographically diverse resort portfolio.  Intrawest Resorts, which owns resorts across the U.S. and Canada, as well as CMH, the world's premier heli-skiing operator, reported that its skier visit total was up 8% through January 5th.  The company went public via an IPO on January 31st, pricing its shares at $12, well below the expected range of $15-17 per share.  The struggles in California will likely strain the finances of some smaller resorts and could spark a wave of takeovers and consolidation.  Results in the northeast, however, have been favorable.  While resorts in Vermont have not benefited as strongly from recent storms that dumped over a foot of snow in areas of New York, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey, they have provided great marketing in major metro areas, such as New York City and Philadelphia, which helped bookings.  Jay Peak in northern VT noted that business was up 24% through year-end, while Killington Resort said that business was up 9.5% year-over-year, through Christmas.            

From a lodging perspective, DestiMetric's data show that occupancy at mountain resorts was up 6.2% nationally, with revenues up an even stronger 12.3%.  By region, western resorts were up 6.5%, while eastern locations registered a 2.1% gain.  Retailers have also benefited from cooperative weather in most areas of the U.S.  SnowSports Industries America (SIA) and the Leisure Trends Group's RetailTRAK said that snow sports retailers enjoyed a record holiday season, with sales through December hitting $2.20B, beating last year's $2.01B and 2010/11's record of $2.17B.  The report noted that while the drought in California hindered sales, favorable conditions in the northeast and record cold extending into the southern U.S helped drive sales, particularly for apparel.  By category, equipment sales rose 6%, apparel sales gained 7%, and accessories sales jumped 15%.  In the accessories vertical, action cameras experienced substantial growth, with unit sales rising 19% and dollar sales jumping 36%.  The report also noted that while an improving economy and rising stock market are helpful, approximately 75% of the year-to-year variance in snow sport retail sales can be explained by weather conditions. 

Overall, while weakness in California and the Pacific Northwest has created a drag, the 2013/14 ski season is off to a solid start.  Should snow conditions improve in those areas, and remain strong in the rest of the country, we could see acceleration through February as viewership of the Olympics generates interest and provides widely disseminated marketing for winter sports. 

Condor Capital

Founded in 1988, Condor Capital is an employee-owned, SEC-registered investment advisor based in Martinsville, N.J. employing 15 professional and support staff. Since Condor is a fee-only, investment management firm, its fees are based on portfolio size, not sales commissions or number of trades. For more information on Condor Capital, please visit www.condorcapital.com or call 732-356-7323.

Contact: Ken Schapiro, [email protected]

SOURCE Condor Capital

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
"With Digital Experience Monitoring what used to be a simple visit to a web page has exploded into app on phones, data from social media feeds, competitive benchmarking - these are all components that are only available because of some type of digital asset," explained Leo Vasiliou, Director of Web Performance Engineering at Catchpoint Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps Summit at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Secure Channels, a cybersecurity firm, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Secure Channels, Inc. offers several products and solutions to its many clients, helping them protect critical data from being compromised and access to computer networks from the unauthorized. The company develops comprehensive data encryption security strategie...
DevOps at Cloud Expo, taking place October 31 - November 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 21st Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to w...
Vulnerability management is vital for large companies that need to secure containers across thousands of hosts, but many struggle to understand how exposed they are when they discover a new high security vulnerability. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, John Morello, CTO of Twistlock, will address this pressing concern by introducing the concept of the “Vulnerability Risk Tree API,” which brings all the data together in a simple REST endpoint, allowing companies to easily grasp the severity of t...
The question before companies today is not whether to become intelligent, it’s a question of how and how fast. The key is to adopt and deploy an intelligent application strategy while simultaneously preparing to scale that intelligence. In her session at 21st Cloud Expo, Sangeeta Chakraborty, Chief Customer Officer at Ayasdi, will provide a tactical framework to become a truly intelligent enterprise, including how to identify the right applications for AI, how to build a Center of Excellence to...
Recently, WebRTC has a lot of eyes from market. The use cases of WebRTC are expanding - video chat, online education, online health care etc. Not only for human-to-human communication, but also IoT use cases such as machine to human use cases can be seen recently. One of the typical use-case is remote camera monitoring. With WebRTC, people can have interoperability and flexibility for deploying monitoring service. However, the benefit of WebRTC for IoT is not only its convenience and interopera...
Deep learning has been very successful in social sciences and specially areas where there is a lot of data. Trading is another field that can be viewed as social science with a lot of data. With the advent of Deep Learning and Big Data technologies for efficient computation, we are finally able to use the same methods in investment management as we would in face recognition or in making chat-bots. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Gaurav Chakravorty, co-founder and Head of Strategy Development ...
Cloud adoption is often driven by a desire to increase efficiency, boost agility and save money. All too often, however, the reality involves unpredictable cost spikes and lack of oversight due to resource limitations. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Joe Kinsella, CTO and Founder of CloudHealth Technologies, tackled the question: “How do you build a fully optimized cloud?” He will examine: Why TCO is critical to achieving cloud success – and why attendees should be thinking holistically ab...
The goal of Continuous Testing is to shift testing left to find defects earlier and release software faster. This can be achieved by integrating a set of open source functional and performance testing tools in the early stages of your software delivery lifecycle. There is one process that binds all application delivery stages together into one well-orchestrated machine: Continuous Testing. Continuous Testing is the conveyer belt between the Software Factory and production stages. Artifacts are m...
Connecting to major cloud service providers is becoming central to doing business. But your cloud provider’s performance is only as good as your connectivity solution. Massive Networks will place you in the driver's seat by exposing how you can extend your LAN from any location to include any cloud platform through an advanced high-performance connection that is secure and dedicated to your business-critical data. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Paul Mako, CEO & CIO of Massive Networks, wil...
When shopping for a new data processing platform for IoT solutions, many development teams want to be able to test-drive options before making a choice. Yet when evaluating an IoT solution, it’s simply not feasible to do so at scale with physical devices. Building a sensor simulator is the next best choice; however, generating a realistic simulation at very high TPS with ease of configurability is a formidable challenge. When dealing with multiple application or transport protocols, you would be...
As businesses adopt functionalities in cloud computing, it’s imperative that IT operations consistently ensure cloud systems work correctly – all of the time, and to their best capabilities. In his session at @BigDataExpo, Bernd Harzog, CEO and founder of OpsDataStore, presented an industry answer to the common question, “Are you running IT operations as efficiently and as cost effectively as you need to?” He then expounded on the industry issues he frequently came up against as an analyst, and ...
Cloud resources, although available in abundance, are inherently volatile. For transactional computing, like ERP and most enterprise software, this is a challenge as transactional integrity and data fidelity is paramount – making it a challenge to create cloud native applications while relying on RDBMS. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Claus Jepsen, Chief Architect and Head of Innovation Labs at Unit4, will explore that in order to create distributed and scalable solutions ensuring high availa...
SYS-CON Events announced today that App2Cloud will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct. 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. App2Cloud is an online Platform, specializing in migrating legacy applications to any Cloud Providers (AWS, Azure, Google Cloud).
In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, Kelly Looney, director of DevOps consulting for Skytap, showed how an incremental approach to introducing containers into complex, distributed applications results in modernization with less risk and more reward. He also shared the story of how Skytap used Docker to get out of the business of managing infrastructure, and into the business of delivering innovation and business value. Attendees learned how up-front planning allows for a clean sep...