A very good question, indeed, with gas already over $4. a gallon in many areas of the US.
I live within five miles of my home mountain, so for me, the high cost of gas won’t keep me away. But most people don’t live that close. For them, it could push skiing out of their reach, especially when you combine it with the high cost of the sport, in general — equipment, lift tickets, and so on.
The effect this will have on the ski industry can’t possibly be good. Ski areas depend on ski visits for profits. And if people cut down on their visits, it’ll make it harder than ever for resorts to make money. What’s more, ski areas need fuel, themselves, for basic mountain services. Could we be seeing more cutbacks? Even higher lift tickets? Forced closures?
I shudder to think.