Lack of snow affects business China Peak Mountain Resort


On Thursday, there was one-fourth the amount of people than on a good day. Michelle Vikupitz, the Marketing and Retail Manager at China Peak, says it varies, but the day after Christmas is usually a busy day at the resort.

"The number of runs we have open are not what skiers would normally see this time of year," she said. Only six of 45 runs are open. Vikupitz says there's not enough snow to open the other runs.

China Peak opened on Dec. 7.

And though the amount of snowfall isn't idea, Vikupitz says temperatures have been cold enough to make snow. She says the amount of snow on the mountain is 80 percent man made.

"The man-made snow doesn't make much of a difference," said Sean Borchardt, who was there at the resort with his family. "It's the terrain, I like to get off the mountain and trees and have fun, there's clearly not enough snow to do that now."

There expert runs were closed. Beginner, Intermediate and advanced runs were open.

It was a sunny day on Shaver Lake's business district as well. Businesses on Highway 168 that runs through the down says they haven't seen the normal December crowds.

"It's usually really crowded," Danny Wolverton said. He came to the Coffee and Deli to get some ice cream for his family. He's been coming to Shaver Lake for many years to take a photo in the snow with his family. This year, he says he hasn't seen the usual crowds of skiers at Shaver Lake's stores and restaurants.

Employees at some of the stores say they've had weekends, but the weekdays have been noticeably slow.

"There's still a lot of pent out demand out there," Vikupitz said. "We have a lot of season pass holders just waiting to get up here as soon as that first storm hits. We're looking forward to them rushing up."

Vikupitz said there wasn't a storm on their radar yet. On Friday, they hope to open up another run.

China Peak also started a promotion on Thursday. If you visitors buy a ticket, anytime from Dec. 26 to Jan. 4, they get a free adult lift pass to use anytime for the rest of the snow season, excluding holiday weekends.

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