BOULDER, Colo. (CBS4) – With uncertainty swirling around the ski season at Colorado resorts, one aspect of the ski industry is booming during the pandemic. Equipment essential for ski touring in the backcountry has helped outdoor gear shops, and in turn bring in huge revenue increases for some Colorado companies.
“We are having unprecedented sales. People are worried about chairlifts not turning and not being able to find that equipment so people are buying sooner,” said Ross Herr, the Sales and Marketing Manager for Oberalp North America, which runs several brands including Dynafit which pioneered bindings for ski touring.
Herr says there was a spike in sales in March as resorts shut down due to COVID-19 and snow lovers still wanted to get into the mountains. Shops anticipated another surge of customers as winter approached, but many companies couldn’t ramp up production fast enough.
“We own our own factory. We’re building as much as we can, but we won’t be able to get any more this year which is tough.”
Boots, bindings, and skins needed for ascending the mountain on skis are in high demand.
Some of Dynafit’s most popular bindings are expected to double in sales compared to last year.
“We’re really grateful and really lucky that sales have been good for ski touring equipment this year in Colorado. Having a strong ski touring market right now at specialty retail is helping local business and that’s what we’re here to support,” Herr said.
Dynafit has its North American headquarters in Boulder. It is expecting a double digit increase in revenue. The company is taking some of that and putting it toward avalanche education through groups like the Friends of the Colorado Avalanche Information Center because there’s concern that people new to traveling and skiing in the backcountry could get into dangerous situations.
“Ask questions, read the forecast get involved with those avalanche forecasting centers,” Herr said.