September 23, 2014 | Updated at 01:31 AM EDT The Latest Entertainment & Celebrity News

Matt Lauer, 'TODAY' Host On Ski Vacation As 'GMA' Ratings Increase

By Sonya Magett, EnStars
on Feb 21, 2013 12:20 PM EST
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  • Matt Lauer
  • NBC "TODAY" anchor Matt Lauer (Photo : Reuters)

Matt Lauer is taking a vacation during a critical time in the television industry. Lauer, 54, was seen on holiday in Colorado during TV's sweeps period, an important time when the industry does everything they can to boost ratings to help increase their advertising revenue.

While TODAY was being beaten in the ratings department by Good Morning America, Lauer was hitting the ski slopes with his children in Colorado. GMA beat TODAY with a whopping 800,000 more viewers than NBC's morning show on Monday, Feb. 18 and a million viewers on Tuesday.

Robin Roberts resumed her morning show anchor duties on Wednesday five months to the day after she went on medical leave to treat MDS, a rare blood disorder she was diagnosed with last summer. It is likely that Roberts' return that day helped GMA trump TODAY again in the ratings department for a third day in the row.

Lauer was photographed buying ski boots in Surefoot, a retail store in Vail, Colo. The news anchor posed with a store salesperson who said Lauer said, "Gimme the best thing you have for my foot." 

The shop's salesman, who is a friend of Lauer's ski instructor, said he was told that the TODAY host is a "solid skier."

Sources told TMZ that Lauer went on vacation because he knew that TODAY would be trumped by GMA with Roberts' return and that he just "doesn't care anymore".

An insider affiliated with NBC debunked the report. The source said that Lauer has always taken a vacation at this time of the year- when his children are out of school.

"Matt took this exact same week off last year and the year before. And other anchors have taken off in Sweeps months before," the source told TMZ.

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