Between lack of snow in winter, and the long off-season in summer, Tahoe-area ski resorts are spending a lot of money to give customers new reasons to visit. The latest is Heavenly Mountain Resort.
Heavenly has always offered summer Gondola rides to 9,000 feet where Lake Tahoe looks like a puddle below.
But Heavenly COO Pete Sonntag says it wasn’t really drawing summer crowds.
"Been kind of a come up, check it out and then go back and do whatever it was you were going to do up at the lake," he says.
Now, at the end of the Gondola line, Heavenly has what it calls an adventure park and hired 120 employees to operate it. Matt Eaton is Senior Manager of Activities.
All kinds of obstacles you can imagine, lily pads there’s moving rolling logs, everything you could want to kind of challenge yourself," says Eaton.
Heavenly’s parent company spent $25 million on adventure parks at three resorts. Its expanding to include biking and wheeled vehicles called coasters. North Star and Squaw Valley already have mountain biking and adventure parks. Similar parks are planned in Truckee and Incline.