It’s a bumper dumper
IT’S been a bumper school holidays for the resorts.
Both Falls Creek and Mount Hotham are talking up visitor numbers both from last year and on long-year averages.
This month’s edition points to more of the same.
The hugely popular sled dog races in the village at Falls Creek and at the village in Dinner Plain go from strength to strength.
More than 80 mushers and in excess of 350 sled dogs are expected to compete at Dinner Plain alone.
The Kangaroo Hoppet is back for the cross-country fraternity with Mt Beauty’s Phil Bellingham expected to be among the favourites when more than 1000 people take to the start line in the Falls Creek Nordic Bowl at the end of the month.
Meanwhile Hotham’s Whiskey Flat will be the base for the biathlon national titles mid-month.
The sled dogs are just one example of the increasing number of attractions at the resorts that don’t necessarily require a lift ticket but complement the visitor’s day on the snow.
It was with this in mind that this month we talked to an expert fat biker – curious pedal-powered machines that are at home on the snow, Steve Lee and his backcountry ski tours and craft beer’s Blizzard Brewing at Dinner Plain.
We also re-visited some of our favourite haunts in The General and Big D kids ski school at Mt Hotham.
Falls Creek Resort Management’s Jo Prothero said the resorts were building their brands.
“Falls Creek visitation is up 51 per cent compared to 2015 season and 28 per cent on the 10 year average,” she said.
“The school holiday period extended over a four-week period across all states, versus two weeks in 2015, which has benefited all visitors and resort operators.
“But we are also working on activities in the resorts that add value to the lift ticket experience and increasingly people are taking advantage of a greater diversity in what the mountains have to offer.”