Tis The Season for the Season Pass Analysis
If you haven’t already, it not too late to buy passes for the upcoming winter season. Don’t think of seasons passes as only for the rich or for those who will ski one area all season. If you are planning a trip to one destination for a week or more it may be cheaper for you to consider a season pass for that area as opposed to using some other package deal. Seriously. Better yet, hopefully your plans for the winter include skiing multiple areas. If that is the case you MUST look at the various multi-area passes that are available.
A complete analysis of all the passes is impossible. Well, actually it isn’t but we aren’t going to do that work since Stuart Winchester at the Storm Skiing Journal has already done it for all of us… more on that in a minute. But let’s just take a couple examples that illustrate why you should spend some time perusing the different pass alternatives instead of watching Instagram reels.
First up – the Indy Pass. Haven’ t heard of it? You need to check it out. Let’s just suppose that you have a day job and live in Boston and are a weekend skier wanting to check out different areas. For $329 ($429 with no black out dates – but you don’t want to deal with the overcrowded black out dates) you can ski two days each at numerous areas. And yes some of the areas may not be on your radar screen. But if you don’t want to ski Cannon Mountain in New Hampshire, Saddleback Mountain in Maine and Jay Peak in Vermont just stay home and take up Pickleball! Three weekends at those three northeast gems will cost you $588 (using 2 day discounted rates). Now we folks at conSKIerge ain’t financial experts, but last time we checked $329 is way way less than $588.
Next up – Mountain Collective. So let’s suppose your weekends at Cannon, Saddleback and Jay have whetted your appetite for more, and it is time to head west. Since we are partial to Utah skiing we suggest you head there. Alta, Snowbird and Snowbasin (lesser known, but a stupendous area with 3,000 in vertical and 3,000 acres of very varied terrain) are all covered by Mountain Collective. Thus, for $599 you get two days at each resort. A little math again – buying two day passes at each resort totals $889 and that is for off peak time periods (and Snowbird considers most weekends peak periods). That would leave you $290 for a few burgers and fries.
And now back to The Storm Skiing Journal. The mastermind behind this online journal and podcast force is Stuart Winchester. When we interviewed him last year (read the full interview with Winchester here) he claims he has a real day job. We are suspect because he does an incredible job covering the ski industry. The primo example of this has to be his chart that lists the half zillion available passes and lists the covered resorts for each pass. And of course it does the reverse – if you know which areas you want to ski it will tell you which passes to consider – check it out!
Be Well; Ski Well