Winter Resorts Warm Up to Dogs

Dog trails increase by 29 percent at U.S. Nordic centers.

Posted: December 12, 2006, 5 a.m. EST

Mountain resorts and hotels are increasingly addressing the wants and needs of an outdoor-loving clientele and also love dogs. One  way is by eliminating conventional tourism policies, according to a new report by an industry journal.

With more resort venues welcoming dogs, their owners are spending money on winter vacations that otherwise would have gone to a boarding facility back home, according to a Dec. 11 report in the northern California-based recreation and travel journal “Mountain News Industry Report.”

A Cross Country Ski Areas Association survey reported a 29 percent increase in dog trails at Nordic centers across the United States. Over 50 Nordic areas in 20 states, including the popular destination resorts of Aspen, Lake Tahoe and Sun Valley, welcome dogs to their trails.

“Nordic resorts are attracting a new group of customers, primarily the backcountry enthusiast who for years has loved taking his dog along for a ski but has shied away from commercial areas,” Chris Frado, president of the Cross Country Ski Areas Association, told the Industry Report. “Overall, it has helped add growth to the sport.”

Dog-loving lodgings are increasing around Lake Tahoe, even welcoming four-legged guests with a dog bed, water bowl, feed bowl, treats, toys, furniture sheet and even doggie videos.

“Overall, welcoming dogs to the resort has been a huge success,” Valli Murnane, co-manager of Tahoe Cross Country Ski Area in Tahoe City, Calif., told the Industry Report. “We have many visitors who come to Lake Tahoe specifically because of dog access. It makes a lot of sense to offer what customers want.”


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