Another Indy Resort Bites The Dust

by The Editors on June 1, 2023

The old dream of riding a local, independent mountain took another hit today (June 1, 2023) as uber resort conglomerate Alterra Mountain Company announced their pending purchase of Northern Idaho’s OG hill Schweitzer. Of course the business people are ecstatic about the purchase and how great it will be for everyone involved.

“Since becoming an Ikon Pass partner in 2021, we’ve had the good fortune of learning how Alterra Mountain Company has quickly evolved into an industry leader,” said Tom Chasse, President and CEO of Schweitzer. “The company’s commitment to preserving the authenticity of their mountain communities while investing in the overall mountain experience is what we’re most looking forward to as the newest member of the Alterra family.”

Just a reminder. Monopolies are always bad. They limit consumer choice. They stifle innovation. And they mean higher prices for worse service. But, it’s very difficult to slow the machine. We just had some of the best days of our season at Mammoth Mountain, so we’re as guilty as anyone when we encourage you to support your local independent hill.

For the official word, follow the jump.

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Suicide Six Resort Changes Name

by The Editors on July 14, 2022

We’re all soft. We get easily triggered. So it’s nice to see that the Vermont resort formerly known as Suicide Six is changing its name to “Saskadena Six,” a name that celebrates the indigenous people of Vermont, and is more sensitive to mental health issues, according to a story on VT Digger.

“Much time, care and thought has been invested in the process to choose a name more representative of our values, one that celebrates its 86-year history, honors the Abenaki tradition, and will welcome future generations,” Courtney Lowe, president of the Woodstock Inn & Resort, which owns the ski area, said in a statement. “While the name might be changing, the experiences offered on this beloved mountain are not.”

The new name reportedly means “the standing mountain” in the Abenaki language. But how will the new name affect people who can’t stand? And is this simply another appropriation of Indigenous cultures for business gain? If these questions are in your lane, please weigh in.

[Link: VTDigger]

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Mountain High’s Santa Sunday Raises $21k

by The Editors on December 19, 2021

Mountain High, SoCal’s closest resort, had its largest Santa Sunday on December 19, 2021. The resort hosted 275 Santas dressed in red coats and flowing white beards and raised  $21,800 for Christmas Cheer All Year.

This is Mountain High’s 6th Annual Santa Sunday event. Any Santa who dress in costume and made a minimum $20 donation to Christmas Cheer All Year received a FREE Adult Lift Ticket worth $119. This event was open to men and women, skiers and snowboarders, Grinchs and Santas alike.

Wonder if any ho ho ho plants were done? We’ll have to check the photos later.

[Link: Mountain High]

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Super-Mega Pass Buyers Sue Resort Corps.

by The Editors on April 22, 2020

Several skiers who bought super-mega passes from North America’s two major ski resort operators (without apparently reading the fine print which we warned our readers about last spring) are now suing these same companies for not offering refunds when the resorts closed early due to COVID-19, according to a story in the Summit Daily.

A class-action lawsuit was filed against Vail Resorts on April 10 claiming false advertising, fraud and negligent misrepresentation, among other counts, due to lost mountain resort access without pass refunds. Four days later on April 14, a similar lawsuit was filed against Alterra Mountain Co., citing that by retaining revenue generated from Ikon Pass sales, the company holds tens of millions in unjust profits as the ski areas and resorts were closed prematurely. 

Obviously, ski resorts are not the only businesses currently facing lawsuits over COVID-19 shutdowns. Nearly every business that sells passes, like theme parks, gyms, and sports courts, are feeling similar pressure.

Seeing as we are not fans of the super-mega passes in the first place (unless you’re riding over 20 days a year at the same resorts) part of us feels the pass buyers got exactly what they had coming by agreeing to assume all risk for the upcoming season. Then again, the way resorts sell these passes is a classic example of corporations taking advantage of their customers by offering something for sale that the buyers obviously don’t understand. Guess we’ll have to see whose lawyers are better. We’re betting on the resorts’. 

[Link: Summit Daily]

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Alterra Mountain Co. Rights The IKON

by The Editors on April 17, 2020

Don’t say Alterra Mountain Company doesn’t listen to their customers. After sending out a completely tone-deaf email announcing the extension of their 20/21 season pass sale (and failing to mention that the IKON passes were non-refundable if the resorts didn’t open next year) they have come correct (on April 17, 2020) with an option they are calling the Adventure Assurance.

Adventure Assurance was designed to alleviate uncertainty and provide flexibility to 20/21 Ikon Pass holders by offering the choice to defer adventure to the following season for any reason with no fee. Regardless of 20/21 Ikon Pass purchase date, between September 10 and December 10, 2020, Ikon Pass holders can choose to defer the value of their 20/21 Ikon Pass toward any single Ikon Pass product available for the 21/22 winter season. For more details, please visit the Adventure Assurance page.

Which is good, because their deal as announced three days ago bordered on criminal. Nice PR pivot, Alterra. Give whoever came up with this idea a raise! We’re still not fans of giving resorts money now for services we may or may not use for two years but if you are, click the link for all the details (and there are loads of them).

[Link: IKON Adventure Assurance]

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Alterra Wants Your 20/21 Pass Money Now!

by The Editors on April 14, 2020

Last spring when we warned snowboarders that by purchasing a super-mega pass they were assuming all risk for the coming season (The Sinister Plot Behind The Super-Mega Pass) we never could have imagined that all the resorts would close in March and that pass holders would be left holding the empty bag. What was even funnier is how quickly the super-mega pass sellers were to point out to their customers that they had no obligations related to refunds because the passes were “non-refundable and not transferable to another season.” 

Now, Alterra (the uber resort conglomerate that owns Mammoth Mountain et. al.) is pressing snowboarders to buy IKON passes for the 20-21 season even though most of North America is in COVID-19 lockdown and no one knows when or if ski resorts will be able to open next year. In fact, they want your “non-refundable” money so badly that they are extending their early purchase discounts. Isn’t that kind of them?

As we look ahead, we invite you to join the Ikon Pass community for next season. For winter 20/21, we are giving you more time to take advantage of spring discounts and consider your purchase until May 27, 2020.

But what happens if you buy a 20/21 Ikon pass and the resorts don’t open for the 20/21 season? Here’s their answer:

At this time, all Ikon Pass destinations plan to be open for the 20/21 winter season. All Ikon Pass, Ikon Base Pass, and Ikon Base Plus Pass purchases paid-in-full are non-refundable.

Ha, that’s right. They keep your money and you get nothing. How you feeling about that deal now? For answers to all your IKON pass questions and to see just how tightly Alterra holds on to your money click the link.

[Link: IKON COVID-19 Update]

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Monday News From Before The Now

by The Editors on April 13, 2020

We’ve collected a monster page full of all the news that is news. We’d like to apologize in advance for all the COVID-19 stories. Personally, we been skipping the news lately as an act of self preservation, but please feel free to dive in. Hope you’re all safe and well. Really.

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Stay Home, Kooks!

by The Editors on March 18, 2020

A little reminder to everyone who believes that total Coronavirus lockdown is the perfect time to travel to hike your favorite resort, skate a distant park, or surf a break that’s not in your front yard. Don’t do it. Stay home.

Mammoth Lakes Tourism speaks for almost every place on the planet right now with the following message:

We’re asking anyone who is not a primary resident of Mammoth Lakes or providing essential services to our residents NOT to visit Mammoth Lakes for the time being. The reason is simple: as a small, remote mountain community our healthcare facilities lack the capacity to handle a widespread outbreak of COVID-19. Additionally, services in Mammoth Lakes are currently extremely limited. Mammoth Mountain and restaurants (excluding takeout services), bars and other public spaces are temporarily closed due to county-mandated health orders. Public gatherings have also been prohibited by the Mono County Public Health Officer.

In other words, stay home kooks! And, if you do live where it’s epic, and you’re able to get out ALONE then please, by all means, share your content with the rest of us who are hunkered down, indoors, for the foreseeable future, doing whatever it is we’re do. We’re all in this together.

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Mt. Bachelor Opens Woodward Peace Park

by The Editors on February 10, 2020

Bend, Oregon’s Mt. Bachelor today announced the opening of the Woodward Peace Park and a chance to qualify for 2020 Woodward Peace Park Championships, April 22-26, 2020.

Woodward Peace Park, a featured venue at Mt. Bachelor’s Woodward Mountain Park, is a unique, ever-evolving terrain park designed to maximize creativity and progression with a focus on fun for shredders of all ages, intermediate to advanced. Only available at POWDR properties, Woodward Peace Park is now open at Mt. Bachelor, Killington in Vermont, Boreal in Tahoe, Woodward Park City in Utah, and Copper Mountain in Colorado. Wooodward Peace Parks are open regularly, as conditions permit, with any regular lift ticket or season pass to the mountain. . . The Woodward Peace Park Championships at Mt. Bachelor will unveil a five-day only, custom-built course, designed and built-in collaboration with Danny Davis, the Peace Park founder. . . Snow Park Technologies, and the Woodward Mt. Bachelor terrain parks team. As with the 2019 Woodward Peace Park Championships, the competition will include a women’s category and a user-generated #GoToPeacePark video contest for open rider and skier contestant qualification.

For all the details on the park and how you could win a chance to qualify for the championships, please follow the jump.

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RIP: Mammoth Mountain Founder Dave McCoy

by The Editors on February 8, 2020

Dave McCoy the eternally stoked, kind-hearted, ski coach, mountain biker, motocrosser, photographer, ski industry titan, and founder of Mammoth Mountain has died, according to a post on the Mammoth Mountain website and a story in the LA Times. He was 104.

The mountain is saying “Thank You, Dave McCoy. 1915 to 2020.” Sometime we’ll list all the ways Dave directly helped shape our lives, but for right now, in sadness, we’ll just say thanks, Dave. Rest in Peace. Our thoughts are with the entire family. For the complete McCoy Mammoth Mountain story click the link.

[Link: LA Times]

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