Skip to content Skip to sidebar Skip to footer

Alpine skier visits up in 2022/23

Ski New Hampshire reported Granite State ski areas finished the 2022/23 season with strong results, with skier visitation at alpine ski areas up 13 percent over the previous season. Despite weather challenges early on, the state saw an increase to well over 2.2 million skier visits. New Hampshire skier visit growth was almost double the national average (6.6 percent versus a 13 percent increase, respectively).

Ski New Hampshire president Jessyca Keeler announced the figures at the organization’s annual conference at Waterville Valley on June 7.

“The 2022/23 season was a rollercoaster when it came to weather, and weather is the single biggest factor that impacts visitation,” she said.

According to a preliminary report by the National Ski Areas Association, nationwide skier visits broke another record in 2022/23, with a total of 64.7 million skier visits – representing an increase of 6.6 percent over the prior season.

“After what initially looked like a season that was going to be plagued by warm weather and little snowfall, it ultimately reversed course and finished in the top 10 seasons historically at number nine for alpine skier visits, with a total of 2,263,776 visits. This represented a 13 percent increase year-over-year compared to 1,997,185 visits the prior year, and 10 percent over the 10-year average,” Keeler said.

While downhill ski areas saw an uptick in visits, cross-country ski area visits were down 10 percent at 102,297 visits compared to the prior year’s 114,263 recorded visits. With cross-country skiing being more dependent on natural snowfall, Keeler says that their relative performance was no doubt very weather-driven in the first half of the season.

Ski areas with snow tubing parks on the other hand rebounded significantly this year, with an 18 percent jump at 128,102 visits, compared to 108,654 in 2021/22.

“Collectively, visits to our member ski areas this season came to 2,494,175, and represented a 12 percent increase over the previous season’s 2,220,102 visits,” Keeler said.

While a few ski areas opened later than their planned opening dates, most areas stayed open until their planned closing dates, with some even extending the season.

“Overall, March weekly visitation was up on average about 54 percent. If you combine the first two weeks of April with the five weeks of March, the average weekly increase across those seven weeks was 81 percent,” Keeler said.

These statistics, Keeler says, underscore the impact that weather has on ski area performance, which can further impact overall winter tourism and its economic performance in the state.

Keeler says that there were many similarities to buying patterns from the previous year, with lots of pre-season excitement that translated into strong season pass sales. Pass sales for 2023/24 are in progress.

New Hampshire ski areas anticipate continued strong demand for the coming winter season and are already investing heavily in capital improvements, including new lifts, new base lodges and continued investment in snowmaking.