California Department of Transportation
Date: December 20, 2013
Contact: Brian Wright, Visit California
Jennifer Sweeney, Visit California
2013-14 Ski Removal Plans Vital to State’s Winter Tourism Industry
SACRAMENTO – Visit California and the state’s ski industry commended the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) at last week’s Snow Summit for its proactive snow removal plan to keep major resort roads open for the 2013 - 14 snow season, announced Caroline Beteta, Visit California president & CEO.
“The winter travel season is off to a great start in California thanks to early storms up and down the state,” Beteta said. “In 2012, there were approximately 6.7 million visits** -- a 20.5 percent increase from 2011 – to California’s major resorts from Mount Shasta in the north to Big Bear Lake in Southern California. Because Caltrans keeps the roads clear, the highways and byways that bring these travelers to our first class winter resorts will have safe passage along the way.”
Caltrans oversees the maintenance and operations of more than 50,000 miles of roadway on the State Highway System.
Caltrans Director Malcolm Dougherty said Caltrans is fully staffed and ready to meet the demands of what everyone hopes will be a record season for snowfall.
“Our maintenance forces are ready with the right equipment to make sure everyone arrives at their winter destination safely." said Caltrans Director Malcolm Dougherty.
For the most up-to-date information on road conditions and chain controls, travelers can access Caltrans’ online “Quick Map.” Quick Map can be accessed by visiting http://www.dot.ca.gov.
Ski resorts and winter sports are big business in California, prompting industry leaders at the annual Snow Summit to discuss key issues, such as snow removal preparedness. Representatives from California’s ski industry meet annually with Caltrans’ senior management team to review plans to keep resort roads clear and support local businesses each year during ski season, reaffirming their commitment to keep ski resort roads open to all travelers.
“Caltrans’ proactive planning will be critical to a successful 2013-14 ski season, which is vital to our state economy,” said Beteta. “The ski resorts alone in California generated approximately $1.3 billion** in economic impact for the state.”
To make it easier for visitors to take advantage of the snow season throughout the Golden State, Visit California provides a comprehensive winter recreation webpage (www.visitcalifornia.com/Things-To-Do/Winter-Recreation/). The section includes a California snow map outlining ski resort areas, nearby cities and airports, and great places to cross country ski. It also features inside scoops on mountain destinations, snow reports and winter driving tips. Numerous winter deals and special packages are available at www.visitcalifornia.com/winterdeals.
“California ‘s spectacular snow destinations are located within easy driving distance from major urban centers, wine regions – even our world-famous coastline, so visitors can combine a ski trip with activities as diverse as museums and theater, wine and food, theme parks or just relaxing on the beach,” Beteta said. “From beginners to experts on the slopes and for those who just enjoy a winter wonderland, California is the place for your winter getaway.”
Visit California (formerly known as the California Travel & Tourism Commission) is a non-profit organization with a mission to develop and maintain marketing programs - in partnership with the state's travel industry - that keep California top-of-mind as a premier travel destination. According to Visit California, travel and tourism expenditures total $106.4 billion annually in California, support jobs for 917,000 Californians and generate $6.6 billion in state and local tax revenues. For more information about Visit California and for a free California Official State Visitor's Guide, go to www.visitcalifornia.com. For story ideas, media information, downloadable images and more, go to media.visitcalifornia.com.
** California Ski Industry Association
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