|Create a free SCUK account and get access to the forums and our regular newsletter.||May 23, 2013|
“Following two outstanding snowsports seasons, this year has been a massive challenge for the team at CairnGorm Mountain. The season is shaping up to be one of the worst since the funicular was built and amongst the worst on record. For the operators not to be skiing in March is something they have not experienced before,” says Colin Kirkwood, Marketing, PR and Sales Manager at CairnGorm Mountain www.cairngormmountain.org
This season to date there have been 44783 skiers/boarders to date compared with 96431 during the same period last year and a budgeted number for this year to date of 60083. However 26438 non-skiing funicular passengers have made the journey up the mountain during the snowsports season this year compared with 19600 during the same period last season.
However as part of the ski area’s ongoing attempts to diversify its business model, in common with all Scottish ski area, CairnGorm hosted the Red Bull 50/50 event last weekend.
The event saw around 100 participants putting on their skis or boards then moving on to mountain bikes in a biathlon event, the organisation of which created a huge challenge to the team on the hill in preparing a race course out of very little snow.
“The company believes it is important for the whole area that events like the red Bull 50/50 take place, particularly in poor snow years, when the attraction would otherwise have been very quiet with this level of snow,” added Mr Kirkwood.
Commenting on the event CairnGorm Mountain chief executive Ian Whitaker said:
“It has been great working with Red Bull and No Fuss Events to put on the 50/50. Whist the weather has made this more of a challenge, the focus from everyone has been about preparing a course that provided a great experience for the 100 competitors taking part and for the many supporters and spectators who came to watch this unique event. We look forward to it becoming a regular fixture on the CairnGorm Mountain winter calendar.
The company sees a great opportunity with mountain biking to develop an experience that will work with the great bike routes that already exist in the area and also compliment the other mountain bike centres in the Highlands.”