Skiers at Arapahoe Basin Colorado December 9, 2017 Skiers at Arapahoe Basin. Photo Credit: sboice (iStock).

Skiers at Arapahoe Basin. Photo Credit: sboice (iStock).

A record-breaking 61 million people visited ski areas in the United States during the 2021-2022 season, according to the National Ski Area Association. The number represents a 3.5 percent increase in ski area visitation from last year. 

The previous record was set during the 2010-2011 ski season, which saw 60.5 million visitors, NSAA records show.

"This record visitation signals that the U.S. ski industry is healthy, and that the demand for outdoor recreation remains strong. There were signs of this during the 2020-21 season as the realities of the Covid-19 pandemic led more people to seek outdoor activities. Strong skier numbers bode well for the long-term health of the sport, especially since participant numbers have been relatively flat over the past decade," a news release from NSAA said. 

The Rocky Mountain region alone accounted for 25.2 million visits, which was also a record high number for the area. 

According to the release, NSAA has been tracking ski area visitation since the 1978-1979 season. A visit is counted every time someone uses a lift ticket or pass at a ski area. 

"Historically, changes in skier visit numbers could be correlated with snowfall; more snow generally meant more skiers. However, the average snowfall this season was 145 inches nationally, lower than the 10-year average of 166 inches, signaling once again the strong desire for people to get outside," the release said. 

The full report can be found, here. 

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