“Overall, I’m really pleased with the season’s results. In addition to pandemic challenges, we also had some challenging weather to contend with, so to end up having an ‘average’ season in a year that was anything but that is truly remarkable.” – Ski NH President Jessica Keeler
Ski New Hampshire announced their visitation numbers for the 2020-21 season, which totaled 2,295,424 visits. According to the Conway Daily Sun, these visit includes days at alpine ski resorts, cross country centers, and snow tubing facilities. The number of alpine skier days was 2,066,011. These numbers for alpine resorts were above 2019-2020 totals by 5% but fell 3% short of the ten-year average.
A few factors resulted in a lower than average visitation total. In November, warm and rainy weather caused later than usual openings for the mountains in the state. A big storm in December reinvigorated interest for a bit, but a massive two-day rainstorm on Christmas Eve and Day lowered demand and the amount of open terrain over the popular Christmas break period. Demand spiked during a snowy January and February, but capacity limits and reservation systems(Vail Resorts has four mountains they own in the state) slowed down visitation totals. Also, Massachusetts, which is the major market for N.H. resorts, had travel restrictions that made out-of-state travelers quarantine following coming back into the state(although most didn’t follow this rule). A warm and dry spring led to some great bump days, but many mountains were bare-bones by their closing dates, leading some to end their seasons early. Other mountains that used to be part of Ski New Hampshire, such as Attitash, are no longer part of the organization for unknown reasons.
In short, visitation numbers were below average, but considering the circumstances, it was a successful season for New Hampshire ski resorts.
Image Credits: Ski NH,