The (Abridged) History of Snowless Skiing

Who needs powder? A Minnesota resort goes to the mat for its future.  By Greg DiTrinco

There is an annoyingly capricious component of the sport of skiing. It’s called snow. Both skiers and resort operators alike have to deal with the seasonal limits of their passion—and their business model. So what if you removed the unpredictability of snow from the sport?

Buck Hill, Minnesota, aims to find out. This mighty mite of a ski area, tucked in a few miles south of the Twin Cities, is perhaps the biggest supporter of a small, but growing segment of the industry: four-season skiing. The resort has installed an all-year skiing surface to create—in theory—an endless winter. Now a few seasons into the radical experiment, “It took a while, but I’m pleased with where we are,” says Dave Solner, Buck Hill’s CEO and co-owner...

Want to read more? You’ve got options!

1. Join ISHA! Your annual print ($49) or digital ($29) membership includes six issues of Skiing History, starting with the current issue. Click here to get started, and select the best option for you under “Print & Digital Membership” or “Annual Auto Renewal.”

2. Sign up for a free six-month digital membership. Read every new issue online—plus back issues to 2009—for free! We’ll be in touch when your free trial membership is about to expire.

To get started, scroll down to “Digital Membership” and select “Six Month — Digital Only Membership.” Add the code FREETRIAL18 to your cart at checkout.

3. Or request a free print copy of the magazine mailed to your home. Sign up for your one-time free trial issue of Skiing History here:

(Due to the high cost of postage, this offer is limited to North American residents only.)