Indoor Ski Resort Will Change The Industry Forever

With this idea it poses problems and positives.


Source: Scarlet Sappho

Beginner slope at ski resort in Park City, Utah.

By: Ella Wallinger, Journalism

For so long the only way to get good skiing conditions was to live somewhere cold and mountainous, and go during the best days of the season. However, over the years that has changed. Now it doesn’t matter whether it’s spring, summer, fall, or winter, skiing is now possible in any season. That’s right, no matter what the weather conditions are outside it won’t matter at an indoor ski resort! There are now indoor ski resorts across the globe.

How does it work?

There are around 114 indoor ski slopes in the world. People often wonder how these indoor resorts are able to create snow and maintain the ski slope. The answer to that would be engineering, and an abundance of fake snow.

The engineers of the Big Snow American Dream resort took a lot of time to create the design and structure of the resorts. The design is minimal and functional, and is located in Rutherford, New Jersey. It is inside of the American Dream sports complex. The building has only three ski slopes but rests on four acres of land. To mimic the natural decline of a slope, engineers built the building on a cement foundation, and constructed poles underneath the building to create the slope slant. It is a flat but curved building, and the poles are crisscrossed and vertical. The pole placement was extremely important when building. The crisscross design helps support the slope, while the vertical poles are their main support and lifting mechanism. It’s a simple build, with an arching roof to provide a tall fit and easy visibility inside for skiers and snowboarders.

What problem does this solve?

The best part about this invention is that it solves a huge problem. For years it has become increasingly evident that temperatures are rising globally because of the greenhouse gasses being emitted into our atmosphere. This has created extremely difficult problems for ski resorts. Problems like little snow, high temperatures, and environmental threats like wildfires, and landslides. It has mostly affected California and the Mid-Atlantic.

What problems does this create?

As great of a thought as this is, it creates some problems for real outdoor slopes. As global warming gets progressively worse, it worsens outdoor ski slope conditions which could lead skiers to the indoor ski slopes. Although it is an innovation and is sure to change the future, the results could destroy business for companies like Vail, Aspen, Alterra Mountain, Boyne, and POWDR. However, those companies don’t have to worry too much considering there are very few of these indoor resorts. Some visitors even reported that the indoor resort would only be used if they couldn’t travel to a “real” resort. Most prefer outdoor skiing more because they enjoy the experience more. For the most part though this might cause problems in the future, as of now those large resorts don’t have to worry.

How much money is it?

Maintaining a normal ski resort is already expensive enough, so how much does it cost to maintain one of these indoor ski mountains? Well, just electricity alone costs around 3.5 million dollars on average, while a regular ski resort costs two million dollars on average.