D.R.: Warmth closes ski hill | VailDaily.com

D.R.: Warmth closes ski hill

Don Rogers

Abondance, France, has given in to global warming and closer their ski hill. Hard to ski when there’s no snow.

The French Alps had an especially tough ski season this past year. The World Cup circuit had to call off races in the Alps for lack of snow, even at resorts much higher than Abondance at 3,051 feet.

Fear is running hot through the whole region over global warming, which everyone but a few Republicans with their heads buried firmly in their ideology has come to accept as fact.

You’d think conservatives would be the ones who would most get the concept that where there’s a question about the cause you might want to side with caution, especially with so much bonafide evidence showing humans just might have a little influence here. Just an observation. I do enjoy life’s ironies.

But more to the point, what could this portend for Vail? Conversion to a summer vacation place with more golfing and mountain biking to supplant skiing and snowboarding as the shoulder seasons shrink winter here?

I’m an optimist about Vail, at least in the short term. I see lower resorts suffering and going the way of Abondance. I see higher places and higher latitudes benefiting from that. Montana and Canada could well become the new Colorado if their sometimes brutally cold winters warm up a little.

Vail is high and north enough to hang in there while southern and lower resorts suffer and wind up sending their customers here. Vail might well also be perfectly situated to catch more storms than most, too.

The weak U.S. dollar and little snow in Europe’s Alps will just about guarantee Vail will reap a bounty from precious international visitors eager to ski somewhere.

All we need is snow like we’ve had the past few years while other regions have gone without.

Wouldn’t that be an irony. Global warming boosts Vail’s fortunes.

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