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Royal Gorge Cross Country Ski Resort in Lake Tahoe, CA is currently in the midst of some major financial trouble. They’re the largest cross-country ski resort in the U.S, and also one of the most popular, drawing thousands of visitors each year. Recently, the Donner Summit mainstay resort has been placed in receivership after it defaulted on a loan.
You might remember a few years back when a major real estate project was proposed, and started near Royal Gorge. Due to the economic downturn, and a dwindling demand for high-priced real estate, Royal Gorge is currently not able to rise above the debt caused by the 900 unit housing project. Not only that but regulatory agencies and environmental groups have been fighting the project presenting further difficulty for the resort.
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Royal Gorge, which is situated next to Sugar Bowl Ski Resort, has been around since the 1960′s. Last month after they defaulted on a 16.7 million dollar loan, a court basically seized control of their trails. Royal Gorge’s present owners acquired the ski resort at the very height of the real estate boom. They paid an estimated $35 million, which seemed fair at the time.
Photo Credit: blog.sfgate.com
Although the current statement reads that the resort will still run as usual this winter, many questions arise as to whether that will in fact be the case or not this upcoming winter. If Royal Gorge did not operate this winter, not only would local and visiting cross-country skiers be impacted, but the Donner Summit-Truckee economy may be forced to bear similar economic burdens as well. Moreover, this case calls to question if other ski resorts, both downhill and cross-country, are facing similar predicaments.