Anybody else get a bit frustrated when they see our local ski resorts making tons of snow on the tubing hill before openning many of the slopes? Obviously the resorts know where their early season revenue comes from, but still, it seems such a waste. I noticed that Wisp was doing this, and Wintergreen said it was concentrating early season snowmaking on the Dobie twins and a tubing park. Maybe they get a lot of college folks for the tubing park? The Seven Springs park appears nude by comparison!
There, I vetted!
I'm right there with you buddy..looking at the Canaan valley slopes via the sods cam you can only see white at the bottom on the bunny slopes! Both TL & Canaan vly ski areas could have had top to bottom runs by Thanksgiving!....I would say "Bring on Almost Heaven" rite about now but that seems a stretch rite now....we have to respect the dude that owns the top of the Mtn...he likes to hunt Bambi up there that is his right
At least the local ski hills in your area didn't convert their longest run into a snow tubing park.
This year I'll probably have to take a trip to that craphole. How many other ski areas do you know have a 250 foot vertical and you have to ski at least three named "runs" to get a top-to-bottom ski run in? Grrrr...
I think it probably has something to do with the fact that they can make so much money with such a small area and using simple surface lifts.
I doubt it takes much water or compressor capacity away from the real slopes. And they sell tubing tickets every 2 hours. $$$
Tromano is correct. The tube park is where the $$$ are. They are realatively small, don't take much to get opened (you don't need anywhere near the base as you do for the ski slopes, for example), and the simple surface lifts don't take much to setup and operate. Not only that, they are very accessible to the public. No expensive equipment rentals, no lessons, no skills required, and they are often fairly cheap, i.e., a $20 two-hour session instead of $50 for a full on ski lift ticket, plus another $30 for rentals, and then $20 for a one-hour group lesson (for most typical folks - those that already know how to ski as well as have their own equipment will typically opt for that instead of the tube park).
The one at Massanutten is quite the cash cow, for example. I don't blame these areas that has them for trying to get that started as soon as conditions allow. I don't know of the others, but it seems the one at Massanutten sells out just about every session on the weekends.