allow us to do countless activities at any time, night or day. Night skiing is one of those things that would not be a very good idea without light bulbs. For years HID (High Intensity Discharge) light bulbs like metal halide and mercury vapor have illuminated large areas for us, but recent innovations in energy efficient compact fluorescent technology allow high wattage CFLs to be considered for use as well.
It seems that the cold temperatures inherent with skiing could cause problems for compact fluorescent light bulbs
, but then again when they're running at 150 to 200 watts they're generating heat similar to an incandescent. Perhaps high wattage CFLs are able to withstand the cold. If not, the metal halide and mercury vapor light bulbs get the job done just fine, albeit a bit inefficiently.
There are a lot of reasons to ski at night instead of or even in addition to during the day. In general, lift tickets for night skiing cost less than those purchased for day skiing. There are far less skiers to worry about at night; few resorts have all skiable areas open for night skiing and the vast majority of people ski during the day, so there is little chance for crowding during night skiing. Some ski runs have music playing throughout the course at night, which is a great touch.
World Cup skiers too are taking advantage of the night skiing opportunity provided by light bulbs. The extra practice they can get at night is a great help. There are also actual night racing leagues available at various resorts for kids and adults. Although I haven't tried night skiing myself, it sounds like a pretty fun venture that I'd like to try sometime. I wonder if when I try it the light bulbs will be energy efficient or old inefficient types?