Lack Of Snow Cancels Big Mt. Baker Ski Race

Lack Of Snow Cancels Big Mt. Baker Ski Race
WHATCOM COUNTY - The big race is canceled. There's not enough snow.

Mount Baker's largest race called the Legendary Banked Slalom, won't go on for the first time in its 21-year history.

Some 275 racers and hundreds more spectators won't come because there simply isn't enough snow.

Besides Mission Ridge in Eastern Washington, Mt. Baker is the only other ski area still open in the state. It's hanging on to its season with less than two feet of snow.

Lines for lift tickets are non-existent. Only a couple hundred die-hards are on the slopes. A normal season would draw 1,000 on a weekday and 5,000 on weekend day.

Operators at Steven Pass shut down Wednesday night, saying they gave it their best run, but the warm temperatures beat them.

Snoqualmie, Crystal, White Pass have all have given up this year as well.

"People are down 70-to-80 percent. It's really have an impact on the states business," said Mt. Baker's General Manager, Duncan Howat.

The state's skiing industry says it's losing $4 million a week. That's 3,500 jobs at ski resorts now gone.

Skiers are already looking to next season.

"Hopefully we'll have a lot more snow next year. Hopefully it's not going to be a trend of global warming that's regular," said skier, Clark Fessenden.

Mount Baker will stay open through the weekend then close temporarily. They won't open again, until it snows again