I was in Crested Butte last week. It remains the wonderful town it has always been. All of the locals will tell you that this is the worst snow year in a long time, and that the past few season have been low snow years generally. Unfortunately, I think that has almost become a reputation for the Butte. The weather pattern for the past couple years is strange. The surrounding mountains (the Anthracites and the Elks) can get pounded with snow, while Crested Butte stays dry. Irwin Lodge is only a few miles away, yet it has been getting several hundered more inches per year than the Butte.
There were very few skiers there last week. The sad part about it is, even in the "worst snow year" in some time, the coverage was excellent, and the snow quality was great. Granted, the North Face wasn't 100% open, and what was open was bony. Still, most of the mountain -- the part of the mountain that most tourists want to ski -- was in absolutely fantastic shape. If the average ski vacationer wants a place to go, the Butte last week would have been the PERFECT destination. Warm sun, great snow (we found boot deep snow in the trees), a variety of terrain, incredible views, and the coolest little town one could want.
I have heard that the mountain isn't doing well financially. As I said it was empty last week. Still, they are building all around the base area, and everyone seems committed to the Mountain. It doesn't feel like a place that is in trouble. I can't imagine the resort closing. It is just such a great place to go.
If any of you know someone that is thinking of going, encourage them to do so. It is one of my favorite places to ski. Even in a bad snow year, I can't image anyone not liking Crested Butte.