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Here’s How Permanent Daylight Saving Might Impact Your Ski Day

More daylight on winter afternoons means less morning light—not just for skiers, but for the resort workers who prepare the slopes.

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Now that the U.S. Senate has approved a bill to make daylight saving time permanent, some employees at Colorado ski resorts are worried about what later sunrises may mean for business.

Tony Cammarata, operations director at Arapahoe Basin Ski Area, told 5280 that he is already thinking about how staying sprung forward year-round might call for a change in safety protocols.

“A lot of what we do in the morning revolves around safety checks to make sure that not only our guests but our employees are safe,” Cammarata saidIf there isn’t enough light at the start of the day to assess avalanche risk, check trails, or inspect lifts, A-Basin may have to delay opening.

Permanent daylight saving time would make Denver’s usual 7:17 a.m. sunrise on the winter solstice happen at 8:17 a.m. instead. That means on the shortest days of the year, the sun wouldn’t peek over the mountains until almost 9 a.m.

Jen Miller, a spokesperson for Winter Park, said getting patrollers to clear potential slides in steeper terrain may be a no-go in the dark, forcing the resort to push back the first chair. “But on the flip side, there is some benefit since it would be lighter later,” Miller said of possibly extending evening operating hours.

Permanent daylight saving time may be a boon for other business sectors. While the National Golf Course Owners Association hasn’t taken an official position on the Sunshine Protection Act, the bill has broad support among its members. “Many operators would prefer an extra hour of sunlight for tee times,” Ronnie Miles, the NGCOA’s director of advocacy, told The Hill. Restaurants and hotels could also see a boost in demand with more daylight in the evening, some economists say.

Although the Senate unanimously agreed to end the twice-annual clock shifting, the push to make daylight saving time permanent seems to have stalled in the House. “It could be weeks—or it could be months” before House Democratic leaders decide to vote on the issue, New Jersey Representative Frank Pallone Jr., who chairs the House Energy and Commerce Committee, told The Washington Post.