Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows announces winter operations | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows announces winter operations

Squaw Valley shown in the spring of 2019.
Tahoe Daily Tribune File

Alterra Mountain Co. CEO Rusty Gregory released a statement Monday morning regarding the company’s ski resorts across the globe.

Alterra, parent company of Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows, will focus efforts on controlling resort visitation levels to avoid overcrowding for the 2020-21 ski season, Gregory said in the statement.

Access to the mountains will be prioritized for season pass holders. The number of daily lift tickets will be tightly regulated, according to Gregory, and those will only be available through advance purchase. Walk-up window sales are eliminated, according to the statement, as well as the sale of undated lift ticket products.

“The health and wellbeing of Alterra Mountain Co. guests, employees and local communities has and will always be our company’s highest priority,” Gregory said. “Since last winter’s resort closures, our teams have been working to develop operating plans and protocols designed to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.”

Gregory said the company is focused on complying with public health regulations.

“The effectiveness of these plans will rely on your cooperation with our enforcement of face coverings, social distancing and crowd management on and off the mountain,” he said. “These unprecedented times will continue to challenge us and will require tolerance and effort by all of us to help keep each other healthy and our destinations open for your enjoyment.”

Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows, along with all Lake Tahoe resorts, closed downhill operations in mid March last season due to the coronavirus.

Vail Resorts was the first to announce closures in March, about 30 minutes before Alterra.

Vail Resorts will similarly favor season pass holders for the upcoming winter ski season. The company’s plans will be to implement a reservation system to access the mountain, according to the company, and pass holders will be able to reserve up to seven days in advance on their passes and as many week-of reservations as their pass product allows.

Walk-up tickets also will no longer be available for purchase at the windows of Northstar California or Heavenly and Kirkwood mountain reosrts. Heavenly and Northstar are expected to open Nov. 20.

Ikon Pass members were reassured Monday that reservations for lift access will not be necessary at most resorts where it is accepted, at this time.

“… currently most Ikon Pass destinations feel confident they can elevate the guest experience and eliminate the need for lift access reservations by addressing social distancing concerns through other operational changes,” according to a statement released on behalf of Ikon Pass.

Bryce Martin is an editor for the Steamboat Pilot in Colorado, a sister publication to the Tribune.

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