Snowboarders Make Up Widely Varying Portion of Resort Customers

While snowboarders represent 25 to 35 percent of all visitors to ski areas, their numbers vary from region and even resort to resort. The gold standard for these numbers is the Kottke National End of Season Survey, a product of the National Ski Areas Association. It’s a thorough product, but it costs $200 for nonmembers, so I haven’t seen a copy of it in years.

Snowboards are in short supply at some resorts.

The other day I was looking at my stats on Trace. It’s a phone-based app that tracks your vertical distance, miles traveled, and so forth, but there’s also a web-based version that lets you look at resorts across the world. From it, you can get an overview of the people who use Trace at a particular resort. Vertical distance. Top speed. Average speed. That sort of stuff. And, surprisingly, the percentage of users who are on skis or on a snowboard.

And when you look at lots of different resorts, you see that snowboarding is more popular at some resorts than at others. At Mt. Crescent, Iowa, 92 percent (as of this date) of Trace users are on snowboards. On the other end of the scale, only 9 percent of the Trace users at Wild Mountain, Minnesota, are snowboarding.

I constructed a list of 110 resorts from across North America. Some are there because they are the most popular on the continent, others are there to represent various places where resorts can be found. So the list may have some biases in what’s included and what’s not, but it does capture much of what’s going on in the industry.

There are two other notes that may limit the validity of this data. One is that the people who use Trace may not necessarily be a representative sample of the skiing/riding public. That is, the people who use Trace may be more likely (or less likely) to be skiers (or riders) than the overall snow-sliding public. Another limitation is that the phones on which Trace runs can’t detect whether a person is on a board or on a set of skis. It’s up to the user to set that information, and what the person does may change from visit to visit. So someone who sets up his profile as a skier may sometimes be on a snowboard, someone who sets up her profile as a snowboarder may sometimes be on skis.

With those caveats in place, it’s time to roll out the numbers. They’re arranged, loosely, by geographic region. At the average resort in New England, less than 25 percent of Trace users were snowboarders, but the number in the western U.S. and Canada is over 40 percent. The percentages for the eastern U.S. and Canada and the U.S. Midwest are in between.

Skiers or riders? Source:
Trace app
Feb. 2019
ResortLocationSkiRideRegion
SaddlebackMaine8020New England
Sunday RiverMaine7822New England
SugarloafMaine8416New England
Shawnee PeakMaine7822New England
Loon MtnNew Hampshire7426New England
Cannon MtnNew Hampshire8218New England
Mt. SunapeeNew Hampshire8416New England
Dartmouth
Skiway
New Hampshire928New England
WildcatNew Hampshire7525New England
StoweVermont6535New England
KillingtonVermont6535New England
OkemoVermont7327New England
StrattonVermont6534New England
Jay PeakVermont6238New England
 
WispMaryland6040East
BelleayreNew York7228East
GoreNew York7723East
WhitefaceNew York6337East
HunterNew York6040East
Holiday ValleyNew York7723East
BeechNorth Carolina5842East
CataloocheeNorth Carolina4455East
Sugar MountainNorth Carolina4951East
Blue Mountain Ontario5941East
Blue Mountain Pennsylvania5446East
CamelbackPennsylvania5545East
Jack FrostPennsylvania5842East
Big BoulderPennsylvania3169East
Seven SpringsPennsylvania8020East
Mt. TremblantQuebec7129East
Le MassifQuebec7030East
TimberlineWest Virginia5545East
SnowshoeWest Virginia5545East
ChestnutIllinois6337Midwest
SundownIowa7723Midwest
Mt. CrescentIowa892Midwest
Boyne MtnMichigan8614Midwest
Mt. BrightonMichigan7822Midwest
Marquette MtnMichigan9010Midwest
Mt. BohemiaMichigan6040Midwest
Mt. RipleyMichigan3961Midwest
LutsenMinnesota7723Midwest
HylandMinnesota5743Midwest
Buck HillMinnesota6535Midwest
Welch VillageMinnesota8416Midwest
Afton AlpsMinnesota6832Midwest
Wild MtnMinnesota919Midwest
Granite PeakWisconsin7030Midwest
WhitecapWisconsin6535Midwest
Devil’s HeadWisconsin4654Midwest
Cascade
Mountain
Wisconsin7822Midwest
WilmotWisconsin6535Midwest
AlyeskaAlaska6535West
Lake LouiseAlberta4951West
Arizona
Snowbowl
Arizona3070West
Sunrise ParkArizona2872West
Whistler
Blackcomb
British Columbia4258West
Sun PeaksBritish Columbia5446West
FernieBritish Columbia4357West
Kicking HorseBritish Columbia4951West
MammothCalifornia4951West
Squaw ValleyCalifornia6139West
Bear MtnCalifornia2674West
KirkwoodCalifornia4258West
NorthstarCalifornia4258West
Snow SummitCalifornia3763West
VailColorado6040West
Arapaho BasinColorado5743West
KeystoneColorado4753West
BreckinridgeColorado6040West
CopperColorado5843West
SteamboatColorado6733West
ButtermilkColorado5248West
Aspen MtnColorado7822West
Aspen
Highlands
Colorado6634West
SnowmassColorado6535West
Winter ParkColorado7327West
Beaver CreekColorado6634West
Sun ValleyIdaho9010West
Bogus BasinIdaho6337West
TamarackIdaho7129West
SchweitzerIdaho6040West
BrundageIdaho7921West
Big SkyMontana7822West
Red LodgeMontana6139West
WhitefishMontana6436West
Montana
Snowbowl
Montana4555West
Bridger BowlMontana7129West
HeavenlyNevada5446West
Mt. RoseNevada6436West
Diamond PeakNevada7327West
TaosNew Mexico7030West
Angel FireNew Mexico4951West
Mt. BachelorOregon4555West
Mt. Hood
Meadows
Oregon5248West
Mt. Hood
Skibowl 
Oregon4555West
Terry PeakSouth Dakota4852West
BrightonUtah4456West
Park CityUtah6634West
CanyonsUtah6139West
SnowbirdUtah6832West
SnowbasinUtah7030West
Powder MtnUtah5842West
Brian HeadUtah3169West
Mission RidgeWashington7030West
Mt. BakerWashington4357West
CrystalWashington7030West
Summit at
Snoqualmie
Washington6436West
Jackson HoleWyoming6931West
Grand TargheeWyoming7030West
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