| Home | Economy | 2024-03-26

CWSAA March 2024 Newsletter - Canada West Ski Areas Association

Recent visits to Harper Mountain, Mt Cain, Mt Washington, and Troll Mountain have reinforced the importance of ski industry to our local communities and economies.

It has been interesting to dissect the current winter.  Media have relayed worst case scenarios to consumers and often reported inaccurately.  Unfortunately it is the reality that media, like other businesses, are constrained by capacity and time limitations.  The reporters are not snowsport participants and are unfamiliar with snow climates or the industry.  However, when one digs a little deeper, I have in fact been greatly encouraged by the positive support from stakeholders such as passholders and lesson participants.  Those with an actual vested interest in ski areas have been very supportive and appreciative of the great efforts operators have made this year.

The season also reinforces the need to communicate to stakeholders and officials the many examples of ski area contributions.  And there is an exhaustive list of these throughout the industry including ski areas and suppliers.  Last week an adaptive snowsport volunteer instructor explained to me that their ski area provided lift access, retail and F&B discounts, facilities, and other backing all to support snowsport accessibility.  In partnership with local indigenous communities, many ski areas offer programs with lift access, instruction, and equipment.  Virtually every ski area will offer a variety of youth and or school programs that enable children to engage in outdoor activity.  These are all examples of grass roots programs that are common currency for ski areas.  However, more often than not, we as an industry do not talk about them.  Perhaps we are so busy with operations that it is not a priority.  Or perhaps like the many responsible stewardship initiatives, we are afraid of greenwashing, or subscribe to an ‘under promise and over deliver’ philosophy.

However, one thing I have learned from speaking to champions of the industry, such as BC Tourism Minister Lana Popham, or Alberta Tourism Minister Joseph Schow, examples of contributions are of great interest locally, provincially, and beyond.  Our industry was reminded through the pandemic of the importance health officials placed on outdoor recreation.  As we move forward, our industry needs to celebrate its social contributions.  By informing our stakeholders and communities about industry activities, it allows officials to highlight the importance of the ski areas to their community and collectively to the province and nation.

Safe outdoor recreation and the communities it serves is a great story and we need to share the story.  At spring conference, CWSAA will be speaking more about this need and is simultaneously working with our eastern colleagues toward the same end.  We know that all ski areas have many stories of contribution to share.

- Christopher Nicolson

Highlights of this month's newsletter...

  • 2024 Spring Conference
    We are looking forward to seeing everyone next month.
    Donations are now being requested for the Small Areas Auction.  Learn about Pheedloop, our new event app.
    Be sure to register before rates increase on March 22. 
  • BC Government
    All-Seasons Resort Policy & Minister Lana Popham 
  • Alberta Govenment
    Alberta Advantage Immigration Program
    Alberta's new long-term tourism strategy
    TIAA-Leger Tourism Business Conditions Survey 
  • Responsible Stewardship Showcase
    Learn More about how Whitewater's waste management program decreased landfill contributions by 15%, despite an increase of visitors. 
  • Deep Snow Safety
    See a new video on deep snow safety by Ski California. 
  • Welcome New CWSAA Members
    The Lawnmower Hospital, Upslope Millwright and Rigging, Softac Systems, CMLS National advisory, Sockeye Modular Installations, Inntopia and Steep Management. 
  • Register for OITAF 2024 in Vancouver
    A once in a career opportunity.  June 17-20, 2024 
  • and much more...
Read the full newsletter HERE >>>>

Add Photos

Google Adsense