"Prior to that we had no winter option," said Presett.
Also, like many other local tourist attractions, there has been more effort to expand chasm activities into the "shoulder" months of the spring and fall season, thereby offsetting increasing operational costs.
One of the biggest advantages to touring the chasm in winter, Presett said, is the solitude. Smaller tour groups allow for a more unique, intimate setting.
"In the summertime we have around 1,000 people a day," he said, "but in the wintertime, you basically have the place to yourself."
The private guided tours cost $25 per person, which include admission, equipment rental, and guide. The tours last one to two hours. Reservations are required and may be made by calling 834-7454.
"Everybody we've taken out there so far has been wowed," said Presett. "It's great to provide that activity in the winter for those that want it."