New Mexico – Heavy mountain snowfall over the winter translated into a bountiful season for New Mexico ski areas. The ski industry reported a 23 percent increase in skier days during the just-completed season compared with the year before.
The state's ski areas also reported the most skier visits since the 2000-01 season. Ski New Mexico executive director George Brooks says the industry was hoping to hit 1 million skiers, but the final number came up just short of that 964,793.
Brooks says the national economy helped New Mexico.
Historically, skiers have driven to New Mexico ski areas, rather than flying in, and Brooks says "lots of folks were driving this year."
Ski New Mexico says the industry had a $541 million impact on the state economy this winter. That's up $61 million over the 2008-2009 ski season.
Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.