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Marmot Basin season ending next week

Sam Fitzgerald skis at Marmot Basin. | B.Payette/Marmot Basin photo

Peter Shokeir | editor@fitzhugh.ca

Marmot Basin is remaining open to skiers and snowboarders until May 1 and will host events this weekend to wrap up a successful season.

Brian Rode, vice-president of Marmot Basin, said attendance for the 2021/22 season was about the same as 2020/21.

“Last year was a very strong year as well, so ticket sales were a little bit off from last year, but that’s 100-per-cent attributable to the cold weather during Christmas, New Year’s,” Rode said.

“Had it not been for that, we would probably be very close to last year. Now the reason last year was so good is partially because of the compression.”

The snow conditions continue to be favourable, with the ski resort sitting at 1.5 metres of settled snowpack at its mid-mountain site as of April 23.

Overall, Marmot Basin experienced 480 centimetres of snowfall this year.

The historic average snowfall is just over 400 centimetres.

“We’ve had above-average snowfall, and even now today there’s not a brown spot anywhere on the mountain,” Rode said.

Marmot Basin opened in mid-November and got more snow shortly after, allowing most of the mountain to open.

Rode said the snow conditions became fantastic by the start of December and remained that way for the rest of the season, which helped drive attendance.

The vast majority of visitors came from the regional market as travel restrictions prevented international tourists from visiting and resulted in a “captive market” of domestic tourists.

“We’re seeing more people coming up from southern Alberta as they start to discover Jasper and Marmot Basin,” Rode said.

There has also been strong visitation from “close-in” British Columbia, such as Valemount and Prince George, and slightly more people from Ontario and Quebec.

Marmot Basin is anticipating a surge in international travel next season and is now working on packaging with tour operators.

“They’re all very excited to start sending skiers and visitors back to Canada and to the Rocky Mountains,” Rode said.

Beats and Eats will feature four DJs getting the party pumping and a barbeque serving up all your favorites at mid-mountain from 11 a.m. to 2p.m. on April 30 and May 1.

On May 1, a retro fashion show takes place from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at mid-mountain.

The first 50 entrants will have the chance to dig out their best retro gear and strut their stuff on the catwalk for a chance to win a midweek season pass.

Register online at skimarmot.com to participate.

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