Baby-boomers on skis: Old, cold and splurging gold

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Baby-boomers on skis


Who will replace the grays on trays?



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THE Over the Hill Gang does not sound menacing. But the members of this Colorado-based skiing group for the over-50s, and their peers, now dominate the slopes. With their new hips and costly kit, baby-boomers have propped up America’s ski resorts for longer than anyone expected. The average age of customers rose from 33 in 1997-98 to 39 last season, according to the National Ski Areas Association, and the share over 55 has risen from 7% to 17%. “Grays on trays” (as one snowboarding outfit calls them) ski more than youngsters, since they have more free time and money. But they must one day bomb their last bumps, so the industry needs new blood.
To hook younger skiers, several states now offer free ski passes to …

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