By Taylor Anderson, Big Sky Weekly Assistant Editor

Writer Allen Best released in a Jan. 20 edition of Mountain Town News his outlook on the ski resort scene in the west today.

His conclusion: Booming Brazilian and Australian markets are expanding the North American ski industry. His study focused on Aspen, Colo., which saw recently the addition of American Airlines flights into Aspen’s airport.

Best quoted Aspen lodging agency president Bill Tomcich as saying Brazilians this year have been booking high-priced, ski-in, ski-out resort properties, especially at Snowmass.

“It almost seems that price is no object this year,” Tomcich told Best. “That to me is a strong sign of how healthy their economy is.”

“To a large degree we are already living the dream in terms of international connectivity, and a lot of it is because of our runway extension completed last fall,” Tomcich said.

The news comes at a time when Gallatin International airport has instituted massive increases to flight traffic and accessibility, as well as an extension to the building and a name change.

The airport last fall completed an expansion, as well as new direct flight lines between New York, Portland, Ore., and several stops throughout California.