The weather pattern in Vail has clearly changed over the past three years. Even with the great snow year of 2010-11, Thanksgiving was lean and the snow didn't start until December.
Vail Resorts needs to rethink its opening and closing dates. By opening in mid-December and closing at the beginning of May, the shift in weather patterns could be better accommodated. Trying to incorporate Thanksgiving into the ski season has only provided an unsatisfactory experience for tourists.
On Tuesday, I went up for my first runs of the year. I met two 20-something men in the gondola who had come over from England - not for a convention or meeting - but simply to ski Vail.
While their timing was remiss at best, the mountain was open, the reservations booked, and I guess they're going to go up and down Born Free for six days.
This is not the message that Vail as a ski resort wants to convey. We should think in terms of showing our resort visitors the attributes of our community, even if it means a few less bookings in the short run but more in the long run.