Weather impacted Eaglecrest

    Juneau, Alaska (KINY) Three major warm fronts and a below average season for snowfall hurt the Eaglecrest Ski area financially this year.

    The ski resort proposed budget asked the assembly to fund $725,000 the coming year.

    General Manager Dave Scanlin said they continue to look at ways to diversify with summer time opportunities, "The mountain bikes are the big one.  It is something all the local people could use.  We look at all the recreational opportunities that other mountains across North America are using.  Its critical to diversify our financial picture and making sure we are as financially sustainable as possible."

    One addition next year will be wine and beer sales at the lodge.  They approved a deal with Louie's Douglas Inn to provide beer and wine next winter.

    The lack of snow making equipment has also hurt.  Scanlin said if the CBJ provided $300,000 for pipe and pump upgrades and additions, it would add more areas to ski.  "It is a critical piece.  The mountain I previously managed we did a full expansion of the snow making system.  I've seen the benefits.  It can really add a lot of strength to the business because it makes the snow dependable and consistent.  It is a necessary thing as we look at all the fluctuating weather patterns."

    Other plans in the works include expansion of hardened hiking trails, a possible lift to help mountain bikers, development of the wilderness cabin, and perhaps building seperate mountain bike trails  The Eaglecrest Foundation was asked to contribute $100,000 to the budget this year.

    Assembly member Norton Gregory urged them to add night skiing.

    Assembly member Rob Edwardson says he would need more information before he supported $300,000 to improve the resorts snow making capabilities.

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