Alan Henceroth, COO at Arapahoe Basin, CO, posted to his blog over the weekend with some of his thoughts for the upcoming winter 20/21 season.
Arapahoe Basin has the advantage of being one of a very small number of ski resorts that reopened after the abrupt end to the season mid-March. The 12 days they reopened at the end of May enabled them to learn some lessons for the summer season, and also gives them a head start on what to expect when winter kicks off next season.
- Related: PHOTOS: Arapahoe Basin, CO Began Winter 2019/20 Yesterday with Savage Last Minute Announcement!
Last season they pipped Keystone to the title of ‘first resort to open’ when they opened on October 11th. Here’s hoping for another early opening this year…
Alan’s blog post is below, in full:
This has been a crazy, crazy five months. The shutdown in March was a shocker to us all. We were able to re-open for 12 days beginning May 27. While the skier day restrictions and the reservation and lottery systems were disappointing, the people that were able to ski, really enjoyed themselves. The re-opening affirmed what a joyous experience visiting Arapahoe Basin can be.
We took the lessons learned from those 12 days and carried them into our summer operations. The opening of our Aerial Adventure Park has been a huge success. Summer usage of the 6th Alley, Black Mountain Lodge, Arapahoe Sports, the Disc Golf Course, hiking and biking trails and chairlift rides has been its highest ever. With the Via Ferrata construction almost complete, Arapahoe Basin summers are the funnest they have ever been.
Knowledge gained from the Spring and Summer experiences will help finalize plans for the upcoming winter. We are working very closely with the Summit County and the State of Colorado governments. Knowing exactly what restrictions lie ahead remains somewhat unclear. We do know the risk of COVID-19 transmission is low while outdoors. We do know that risk can be higher indoors. We do know that skiing and riding on a mountain our size is a good, healthy activity with a low risk of COVID-19 transmission. We do know there are already restrictions in place for restaurant and retail spaces. We do know that parking is a low risk activity. We are working very hard developing a plan for people to transition safely and quickly from our parking lots to the mountain.
We can expect the usage of buildings to be very different. We will have restaurant, retail and rental services, but they will be limited to whatever current government restrictions allow. The buildings will not be places to hang out. You can expect to put your boots on at your vehicle. Our trademark, raucous, social activities like apres ski in the 6th Alley and Moonlight Dinners at Black Mountain Lodge will be on hold for a while.
We are deeply committed to the safety and well-being of our guests and our employees. We are deeply committed to those people that have already purchased season passes and products valid at A-Basin. We are deeply committed to offering skiing and riding with as few restrictions as are absolutely possible. The upcoming season will be all about the skiing and riding.
We anticipate opening as soon as Mother Nature allows. As regulations and guidelines develop, our plans will mature. As you know, we are really into offering as long and as good of a ski season as we possibly can. I look forward to seeing you on the hill very soon. Keep your face coverings on and your distances long!
Arapahoe Basin (often shortened to A-Basin, or simply The Basin. It is well known to locals as The Legend, as it is open all the way into early June.) is an alpine ski area in the Rocky Mountains of the United States, in the Arapaho National Forest of Colorado. Arapahoe Basin is known for its extended season—usually staying open until early June, and sometimes into early July, whereas most other northern ski areas close in early April. Arapahoe Basin is located south of Loveland Pass on U.S. Highway 6 in Summit County.