Sugar Bowl halts season pass sales, cites need to limit visitors |

Sugar Bowl halts season pass sales, cites need to limit visitors

Justin Scacco / Special to the Tribune
Sugar Bowl Resort has halted season pass sales.
Provided / Sugar Bowl Resort

The resort announced Tuesday that it would pause sales for the time being, citing strong season pass pacing and the need to limit the number of winter visitors each day to allow for social distancing protocols.

“As we all work together to slow the spread of COVID-19, we recognize the importance of physical distancing and avoiding crowded environments,” Jon Slaughter, executive director of marketing for Sugar Bowl and Royal Gorge, said in a statement. “Although an uncrowded experience has been part of the Sugar Bowl brand ethos for decades, in this pandemic climate we must be especially careful not to overwhelm the resort by overselling it.”

The resort indicated that it is currently working with Placer County officials to gain approvals on their winter operating plans, which include daily capacity limitations. The resort also stated in a release that it has not yet decided if it will implement a system that requires passholders to reserve a day of skiing or snowboarding.

“We can’t guarantee that we won’t need to introduce a reservation system for passholders at some point, because the coronavirus situation is constantly changing,” Slaughter added. “By limiting the number of passes we sell, our goal is to safely and comfortably accommodate all of our passholder guests each day this winter, without a need for them to reserve their visit days in advance.”

Slaughter indicated that pass sales may resume this fall or winter, depending on the status of coronavirus safety guidelines in the county and state.

The decision to pause season pass sales at Sugar Bowl does not affect Royal Gorge Cross Country. Resort operators stated they don’t envision any capacity restrictions at cross-country area, with its 140-kilometer Nordic trail network that naturally accommodates social distancing. Passes for the 2020-21 season remain on sale at

Sugar Bowl and Royal Gorge typically open for the winter season in late-November, with the ski and snowboard season normally lasting through mid-April.

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Justin Scacco is a reporter for the Sierra Sun. Contact him at or 530-550-2643.

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