Alterra CEO doesn't want Ikon to ruin resorts.

Philpug

Notorious P.U.G.
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Winter 2017-18 start was terrible
Winter 2018-19 was an amazing snow year

I think last year crowding was in part due to many being *hungry* to ski and get after it while it was good. Make hay while the sun is shining and all that.
Last year was a perfect storm, great snow, a good economy and the novelty of a new all-inclusive pass. Take one or two of those out of the equation, I think we will be having a complete different conversation. We had days at Mt. Rose that we actually drove in and turned around because even at 9:00AM there was a huge lift line, was that Ikon or Epic's fault? No.

The ski industry needs volume of skiers. With the lower pass prices, we are going to get more people to the mountains. More people skiing, means more food and drinks consumed. More people traveling to ski and renting condos/houses/hotel rooms. More gear being purchased. Hopefully, more people on Pugski.com. Simply, more money funding the sport that we all love doing. Sorry, if we want to keep skiing and sharing the sport with our kids, we need the "people who ski" to fund us, "the skiers".
 

Steve

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All this talk of resorts facing a backlash after being ruined (i.e., seeing an increase in customers) reminds me of the saying "nobody goes there anymore; it's too crowded."
Yogi Berra.
 

Jacob

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Reading that article, it appears to me that no one is talking about reducing skier numbers. They're just talking about dealing with bottlenecks, parking issues, and things like that.

So if the larger crowds are indeed due to the Ikon pass, then I wouldn't expect that to change. Some resorts might be able to sort out problems with parking and maybe some lift lines, but I wouldn't expect to see fewer skiers on the mountain unless it's a bad snow year (or the economy tanks).
 

fatbob

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Last year was a perfect storm, great snow, a good economy and the novelty of a new all-inclusive pass. Take one or two of those out of the equation, I think we will be having a complete different conversation. We had days at Mt. Rose that we actually drove in and turned around because even at 9:00AM there was a huge lift line, was that Ikon or Epic's fault? No.
Quite -weather is a huuuge factor on shaping traffic and crowding on a given day. On a March Friday we drove down to Mammoth from Tahoe and drove into the Mill parking lot, got out of the car , got blown over and got back in, checked the lift status and hightailed it to June where we were still relatively early up (&it was bluebird). Now June got really busy that day. Was that a fault of Ikon? Nope just weather closing out a huge neighbouring resort on a weekend where lots of people prompted by the big snowfalls had driven up early for the weekend.

The benefit/problem of Ikon in somewhere like the SLC area is it gives optionality. Say you switched from an Alta only pass to a full Ikon. LCC gets shut/ predicted to open very late so rather than staying home you go to Soli or DV, after all it's still a powder day. Has Ikon pass caused that? No to the passholder it's a benefit. But it's still a shock to the system when a bunch of Altabird regulars pitch up to schralp every inch of pow at less avy prone DV.

My one observation about Tahoe is that Ikon really need a B hill for storm days and perhaps families not wanting to deal with Squalpine insanity on the rowdy days. But from the perspective of potential additions I wonder what's in it for them - the SS option would be Sierra and that seems to do OK already. Diamond Peak and I guess Homewood would be better sheltered options but they'd be overrun with a fraction of squalpine traffic.
 

mdf

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Sorry, if we want to keep skiing and sharing the sport with our kids, we need the "people who ski" to fund us, "the skiers".
Those "people who ski" are a strange bunch. I had days (at Loon for example) last season when I had to park in the most remote lot, couldn't find a seat at lunch, and had trouble finding a spot at a restaurant for dinner. And yet, other than the gondola (all day) and a the lifts out of the base mid-morning, the hill was fairly empty and there were almost no lift lines.
 

AngryAnalyst

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I only read pages 4-6, but have we talked about how ski resort economics sort of suck once you run out of real estate to sell? Of course nobody wants long lift lines and 2 real runs on a powder day, but what's the alternative? Skiing is getting more accessible but as far as I know total skier visits are still in a downward trend.
 

Wasatchman

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I wouldn't be betting against the Ikon Black Pass or some other form of premium linecutting pay for perks however. It's a pretty simple lever - I hope Alterra are better than that.
I can't see Alterra doing a premium linecutting pass. I think the backlash would be considerable, and contrary to most ski culture that's out there. I don't even think wealthy people would advocate for this option.

And truth be told, there already exists a line cutting premium service. Private lessons.

My guess is paid parking will be a lever that will be increasingly used. It's waaaay early to say, but I do think the early read at Solitude is that the paid parking is having an effect. PCMR just sold their parking lots to a developer, and I would guess it won't be long before paid parking is introduced there.
 

AngryAnalyst

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And truth be told, there already exists a line cutting premium service. Private lessons.
Analyst senior uses that approach on the rare occasions he can be convinced to ski with yours truly (I think the logic is the potential joint damage is vastly more bad than $$$ for an instructor so if he's already risking exploding his knees he'd rather not wait in line at all). As a plus, instructors can know most of the good lines.

How much more does a premium pass cost? I'm sort of shocked it makes any economic sense.
 

pchewn

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Analyst senior uses that approach on the rare occasions he can be convinced to ski with yours truly (I think the logic is the potential joint damage is vastly more bad than $$$ for an instructor so if he's already risking exploding his knees he'd rather not wait in line at all). As a plus, instructors can know most of the good lines.



How much more does a premium pass cost? I'm sort of shocked it makes any economic sense.
Premier Plus pass is $449 in ADDITION to your season pass.
Premier pass is $399 in ADDITION to your season pass.

https://www.coppercolorado.com/plan-your-trip/season-passes/premier-pass
 

Pat AKA mustski

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BBMR has a premier parking pass for the season, but it's sold out so I can't find the price.

Mammoth has it's Mammoth Black Pass which caomes with a bunch or special considerations and preferred parking ($30/day) iaincluded. A single membership is $10,700/year! But hey, it includes your Ikon pass.
BENEFITS
MORE TIME. MORE ACCESS.
Imagine more time to do more of what you love. We listened to what you want and need to make a premium experience at Mammoth. With exclusive access to lifts, parking, events and behind-the-scenes activities at Mammoth, your life will be simpler and exactly the way it should be.
  • First-in-line lift access
  • Premier parking pass
  • Ikon Pass
  • Exclusive hot wax service and other flexible benefits
  • Member's only special events, including Fresh Tracks and Saturday Night Torchlight
  • Private activities and outings
  • Parallax private dining room
  • Personal Concierge
 

mdf

entering the Big Couloir
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Boston Suburbs
Snowbird has the Seven Summits club, which gives first tracks and line cutting.
https://www.snowbird.com/seven-summits/

7:45 am first tracks
line-cutting privileges to the pass holder and a companion
private, members-only area at the lodge
Cliff-lodge spa membership
complimentary valet parking

It's a whole different stratosphere, though. No price listed. I'm guessing tens-of-thousands dollars.
"For membership inquiries, call ..."
"A limited number of memberships are available."


I noticed the Seven Summits line at the Tram, but I've never seen anyone use it.
 

blackke17

I'd rather be at Alta
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Little Cottonwood Canyon, Utah
Copper.

And I know of multiple places with early-ups ... Steamboat, Whistler, JH, hell we took an early lesson at Snowbasin a few years back for the express purpose of skiing everyone else's pow before the lifts opened to the public.
oh man i can only imagine the uproar at the Bird when the premium pass folks board the tram in front of people lined up for hours!
 

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