I first saw the news on Twitter this past Sunday that Tamarack Resort was finally hitting the end of their financing and having to shut down all operations as of the closing of their lifts today. Now that today has come, I find it very strange to browse through Tamarack’s website and while I see that they have done a good job of noting their closing throughout the site, they still have left all of their site’s content up aside from a couple of PDF links on their home page. I almost of feel like I’m going to an open casket viewing at a funeral…it’s a bit surreal.
Up until now, it has been interesting watching the impact of the current economic issues on the ski resort industry, surprisingly there are resorts that are having a banner year. However, it appears that most of the industry is off by a good chunk and is cutting where possible so that they can withstand what looks to be at least another year of lowered revenues. Personally, I’m fortunate to be working for a company that has it’s finances in control and isn’t burdened with mountains of debt like Tamarack was. Even so, it still hasn’t been smooth sailing as there were a number of people, including a co-worker in my department, let go just over a month ago.
In spite of this, I still think that the winter resort business is in good shape even as our economy bumps along. I know many people that have managed to carve out time and money to take their winter ski or snowboard trip even though it looked like it wouldn’t happen this year. The airfares that were through the roof to start the season have started to come back down. And, truth be told, there’s still nothing like hitting the slopes, whetherit’s an epic powder day or just a quick cruise around the mountain.
In the meantime, RIP Tamarck.