Mother Nature is being fickle this year with her allocation of snow. Western resorts are doing well for the most part. New England and the Mid-Atlantic continue to bounce back from a disappointing holiday period when unseasonably warm temperatures in some areas made it impossible to make snow, much less have it fall from the sky. Vail’s recently purchased southern PA resorts – Roundtop, Liberty and Whitetail – barely got open after Christmas only to close almost immediately. All three are open now although they did not benefit from the coastal storm that dumped more snow on beach towns than it did in the mountains.
The ski industry has been making headlines – too much snow in some parts of the country, not enough in others; long lift lines due to robust preseason sales of multi-resort passes and not enough terrain open; staffing shortages that have hampered operations nationwide. And, then there is Covid continuing to affect travel plans. Still, skiing and snowboarding benefitted last season because they are outdoor sports and something to do in the winter. That desire is likely to continue.
And, it is one of the reasons why so many rushed out early to buy multi-resort season passes. The fact that Vail dropped the price of its product significantly helped fan the flurry. If you dragged your feet buying an Ikon, Epic or The Mountain Collective Passes for this winter, you are out of luck. Sales are over. As snow conditions improve and more people get the itch to ski or snowboard, the good news is that you still can purchase an adult Indy Pass for $329 (with blackouts) or $429 (no blackouts). Cost for kids (12 and under) is $139 and $189 respectively. A significant number of Indy resorts have NO blackout dates and the web site specifies these. The Pass is good for two days at each resort. The prices here are good through February 28.
The Indy Pass now boasts 81 resorts including four in Japan and six in Canada. Some are those that most people have probably never heard of- like Antilope Butte in Wyoming and Blacktail in Montana. Others are larger well-known destination resorts like Jay Peak and Waterville Valley but the lineup spans a wide range of resort sizes and sophistication depending on location. In case you didn’t “get it” Indy stands for independent resorts so they do not belong to one of the conglomerates. As the Indy Pass has grown its resort membership base it also has grown its customer base. “Last year we had 96,000 redemptions, up 1100% from 19-20, our first season”, noted founder Doug Fish.
With single day lift tickets at some resorts topping $200, the Indy Pass offers a significant bang for the buck.