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Colorado ski visits down through December

7:49 PM, Jan 22, 2013   |    comments
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Figures for the 22 ski areas represented by Colorado Ski Country USA follows a more than 10 percent decline for the same period last season.

"The season has been a little down. My business has been down about 15 percent for the year which is a significant drop off," said Rick Bly, owner of the Skinny Winter gift shop in Breckenridge.

Snow this season has been scarce. By late January, the statewide average is 62 percent. January is on pace to be the driest in more than 120 years.

"We are right now the driest January on record with 2.4 inches of snow. The record driest January is 3 inches," Bly said.

That lack of snow could mean tough summer business for Dillon Marina Manager Bob Evans at the Dillon Reservoir.

"We need the snow up here to fill our reservoirs," Evans said.

Water levels are already down about 29 feet and a lack of snow will make it hard to fill and operate marinas if the snow doesn't come this spring.

"I ordered some ramps that are 90 feet long just in case," Evans said.

Coming off a bad snow year last year, a bad snow year this winter could also put a big strain on water supplies.

The good news: February, March and April and traditionally big snow months.

(KUSA-TV © 2013 Multimedia Holdings Corporation with The Associated Press)

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