Ski Resort Hopes Downhill Mountain Biking Can Boost Business On Slopes

Ski resort hopes downhill mountain biking can boost business on slopesFaced with dwindling numbers of skiers, a Japanese ski resort is exploring whether the relatively new winter pastime of downhill mountain biking on snow can help draw more visitors to the slopes.

A nighttime event to showcase the activity at the Togari Onsen ski resort in Iiyama, Nagano Prefecture, on Jan. 31, drew 55 participants, from children to those in their 60s.

Chizuko Sasaki, a 51-year-old cycling enthusiast from the city of Saitama, north of Tokyo, said she had "never thought of riding a bike (on a ski resort) in winter."