Powderhorn Resort Looks to Boost Summer Attractions
KREX News Room
GRAND JUNCTION, Colo.- A recent bill signed in 2011 is changing the way ski resorts do business in Colorado.
The Ski Area Recreational Opportunity Enhancement Act of 2011 permits ski resorts to use their facilities for a number of recreational activities.
It has also generated an estimated 600 jobs and $40 million in direct revenue on an annual basis across Colorado.
Prior to this legislation, all non-ski related activities had to be approved by the U.S. Forest Service through a long process.
Now, ski resorts know exactly what guidelines they need to follow in order to hold activities on the slopes year-round.
"It's now in writing, in law," said Jeff Hanle, Director of Public Relations for Aspen Skiing Company. "There's a framework there for us all to follow."
Now officials at Powderhorn Mountain Resort are revising their master development plan in the hopes of adding new recreational activities.
"As we look at our summer activities, we'll be looking at everything from mountain bike trails to ziplines to mountain coasters to a variety of different activities that fall within the parameters of the bill," said Daren Cole, General Manager of Powderhorn Mountain Resort.
Some Western Slope resorts such as Snowmass have already had major success with the addition of new business opportunities in hiking, fishing, and especially mountain biking.
"It's an amazing activity that the equipment that has been developed for it and the techniques that can be taught tie in perfectly with the sports of skiing and snowboarding," said Hanle.
State of the art biking and hiking trails have been created on the same mountains they use for skiing in the wintertime.
The resort also hosts a camp for kids to learn their favorite outdoor activities.
Powderhorn workers hope to mimic the early success at Powderhorn while adding some unique touches.
"I think we look around the industry," said Cole. "We'll be looking at all those plus other things other resorts may not be doing. We'd like to be on the cutting edge of some of those activities."
The master development plan is projected for completion this fall, at which point the U.S. Forest Service will review it.
Once it's approved, Cole says the resort will begin work as soon as possible.
The resort is hosting several events this summer in the mean time:
- 7/20 - 7/21: WEBE Moto Race
- 8/3 - 8/4: Summer Celebration
- 9/21 - 9/22: Fall Fest
- 9/28 - 9/29: Color Weekend
For more details on these events, visit www.powderhorn.com