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02/24/20, 03:38 AM

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Author Topic: Crystal discontinues walk-up weekend/holiday tix  (Read 1500 times)
Charlie Hagedorn
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Crystal discontinues walk-up weekend/holiday tix
« on: 01/13/20, 07:08 PM »

Bouncing this over from the TAY FB page:

https://www.crystalmountainresort.com/the-mountain/crystal-blog/an-open-letter

That's quite a change.
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Lowell_Skoog
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Re: Crystal discontinues walk-up weekend/holiday tix
« Reply #1 on: 01/14/20, 09:36 AM »

This is painful.  I haven't gotten a season pass up there for many years because I flit around and don't ski that may lift days.  I'm typically a last-minute decision maker about ski days.

I wonder what affect this will have on backcountry skiing around Crystal Mountain.

How long until Baker or other areas have to implement something like this?

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Lowell_Skoog
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Re: Crystal discontinues walk-up weekend/holiday tix
« Reply #2 on: 01/14/20, 10:04 AM »

Found out this morning that Founders Club tickets are not affected by the new policy. Because members of the club activate their tickets before the ski season (at a discount) they are apparently considered pre-sold. A thank-you to my long-departed Dad for investing in Crystal Mountain back in the 1950s.

The need for this new policy is still painful.
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filbo
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Re: Crystal discontinues walk-up weekend/holiday tix
« Reply #3 on: 01/14/20, 08:50 PM »

I guess you could look at it as the good news and the bad news
the good news is it could have been worse, the bad news is what's next.
I guess this is why due to the population density of western Washington
the west side sucks.
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dberdinka
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Re: Crystal discontinues walk-up weekend/holiday tix
« Reply #4 on: 01/15/20, 11:31 AM »

I believe the first time Baker ever had to turn around traffic due to overcrowding was Presidents Day 2018.   It's already happened I believe twice this year.    Baker has pursued a different approach than most ski areas in that passes are expensive and day tickets are cheap ($65).   It's had the desired effect with day ticket holders significantly outnumbering pass holders on the weekends.  Casual chairlift conversation suggests that many of the people come from the Central Sound.   This trend has definitely picked up over the years.

I imagine the closure of Crystal to day pass users will increase this traffic even more.  Maybe most will choose Snoqualmie but even a couple hundred more heading north will create a noticeable impact.    Right now if you leave Bellingham by 6:30 it's a casual 1.5 hrs to Baker.  So three hours from Seattle might not sound so horrible if your sitting in traffic for five on the way to the Stevens or Crystal.  That said leave at 7:30 and you'll hit grid lock on the final five miles.   Already this season I've noticed a strong uptick in early birds with the parking lot filling up sooner and sooner.

My guess is Baker won't do anything soon.  They don't seem to have the infrastructure or desire to do something like create advanced ticket sales.   They certainly aren't going to limit how many they sell!   Maybe we'll finally see a more reasonable balance between day pass and season pass prices next year.   

The intractable parking situation up there seems near impossible to solve with so many stakeholders involved.  My understanding is that Baker would love to charge users of the upper lot they maintain but legal and implementation issues prevent them from doing so. 

Personally this is probably the last year I buy I pass there.  The mountain is just way to crowded.    Thinking I'll just get our lift skiing in on longer trips to more remote (non-Epic/Ikon) mountains with maybe some scattered days here and there locally.   As far as BC goes it's now always the alpine start along with a strong motivation to go far beyond Bagely Basin.

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altasnob
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Re: Crystal discontinues walk-up weekend/holiday tix
« Reply #5 on: 01/15/20, 12:02 PM »

More people in Seattle should be skiing at Baker rather than Stevens or Crystal. From where I live in Tacoma if I drove to Crystal without crowds on dry road it is 1.5 hours. But on weekends, I now must leave at 5:30 am and then its a 2+ hour drive. If I lived in Seattle, I would need to leave even earlier than 5:30 am. So if you live in Seattle, it is a shorter drive to Baker than Crystal, at least on weekends. I used to think that White Pass was too far from Tacoma for regular day trips but now my drive to White Pass is essentially equal to my drive to Crystal (on weekends at least). If you want to live in a city and lift ski weekends in Washington you should be moving to Wenatchee or Spokane. Bellingham to Olympia is at full capacity for lift skiing on weekends, and that aint changing in any of our life times.
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Stefan
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Re: Crystal discontinues walk-up weekend/holiday tix
« Reply #6 on: 01/15/20, 12:22 PM »

I was up there on Sunday.

I left at 6:00 from Tacoma.  Did take a long time driving.

However, the lines on the lifts were not that bad from other times I have been there.  That was weird.  I have been there when the lots were not full, but the lines were long.  The longest lines were at GV.  Northway had some lines, but were always manageable.  Visibility sucked out there for lots of time for me.
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Randy
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Re: Crystal discontinues walk-up weekend/holiday tix
« Reply #7 on: 01/15/20, 02:58 PM »

The last time I bought a ticket at Crystal on a weekend I got all of five runs -- spent most of the day in queues.
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Scotsman
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Re: Crystal discontinues walk-up weekend/holiday tix
« Reply #8 on: 01/15/20, 04:12 PM »


However, the lines on the lifts were not that bad from other times I have been there.  That was weird.  I have been there when the lots were not full, but the lines were long.  The longest lines were at GV.  Northway had some lines, but were always manageable.  Visibility sucked out there for lots of time for me.

This is correct.
I’ve skied every weekend during the recent “overcrowding “ and had  manageable lift lines. Sure it’s busy but with some common sense it’s still possible to enjoy a good day skiing. 
People are sheep.... if you must get rope drop in Northway on a busy powder Saturday then you are going to stand in a big line as there is a mad rush .An hour later the line will ok again.
 The problem at Crystal has been the parking lots filling up so early and the lodges overflowing with  recreational skiers and families who do two runs, burn their legs and then sit in the lodge for two hours drinking beer and pizza. That’s good, they aren’t in my stash or in the lift line.

This is the new norm . Adapt and use common sense. If everybody goes to Chair 6 go to Short North. Etc.

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ceog
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Re: Crystal discontinues walk-up weekend/holiday tix
« Reply #9 on: 01/16/20, 07:15 PM »

To bad honesty is dead in America. 2018/19 8,000 season passes. 2019/20 29,000 season passes. Parking changes 2020 summer after increase in sales.How many other "Resorts" do not  let the heathen poor ski bums? Fish stink starts at the head, no different here. At least the last owners stupidity was funnier, wife destroys husbands chairlift!
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filbo
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Re: Crystal discontinues walk-up weekend/holiday tix
« Reply #10 on: 01/17/20, 08:30 AM »

Reading the notice to the community I saw that the military was also on the excision list.
Thanks for your service.
The rhetoric of the notice was like someone burning you with a blowtorch but telling you how great it is for you.
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altasnob
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Re: Crystal discontinues walk-up weekend/holiday tix
« Reply #11 on: 01/17/20, 09:26 AM »

Crystal wants people who are pissed off about the crowds, and the oversell of Ikon passes, to think they are doing something about it. But in reality, their new police will do nothing about crowds and is just a clever way for Alterra/Crystal to increase profits. It's not like anyone who wants to buy a day ticket on the weekend would be able to get to Crystal on the weekend to buy said day ticket (they would likely be stuck in the traffic line). And there are a ton of exceptions to the new no day tickets on weekend rules. All pre-paid tickets are valid. Founders club tickets are valid. 5 day tickets are valid. There are supposedly 30,000 Ikon pass holders in the Puget Sound area this year (up from 10,000 last year). Each one of these 30,000 pass holders has eight "friends and family discounts" that can still be used to buy tickets from the window on the weekend regardless of whether the online site states they have sold out. And you get a 25% off with this discount. So if anyone wants to ski on the weekend and has no way to buy a ticket day of from the window, just find one of these 30,000 Ikon pass holders and have them buy the ticket for you. What Crystal's new policy really does is encourage people to buy tickets in advance, buy the 5 day ticket, or buy an Ikon pass next year. Alterra/Ikon and Vail/Epic has determined these advance ticket sales allows them to maximize profits. And they serve up their new policy to the gullible with words like "community" and "too much much love."
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Snowboy
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Re: Crystal discontinues walk-up weekend/holiday tix
« Reply #12 on: 01/17/20, 09:41 AM »

Lots of people riled up over the policy change. I view it as business as usual. I have my doubts it will have a significant impact on lot or hill crowding. As others mentioned the lift lines are not bad even when the lots are at capacity. Leave earlier to get a parking spot. Always carpool!
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altasnob
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Re: Crystal discontinues walk-up weekend/holiday tix
« Reply #13 on: 01/17/20, 09:49 AM »

Crystal's off season plans include building additional parking lots (not sure where) and figuring out a park and bus system from Enumclaw. So we'll see if the lift lines are still "not that bad."
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CascadeSkier
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Re: Crystal discontinues walk-up weekend/holiday tix
« Reply #14 on: 02/07/20, 09:07 PM »

Well, we all knew that sooner or later our local hill would be outed -- and that day is upon us. Sadly, IMHO.

With respect to additional parking, next up is Lot G, which is looker's right just past the diesel backup station as you drive up the Blvd. A preliminary grading was done last fall but was not polished enough to be active this year.

The 2004 Master Plan mentions "parking" 110 times. Load this file and hit Ctl + F. It looks like Lot G needs to be the first domino to fall, followed by a reduction in Log F.

https://skimap.org/data/193/1460/1392057371.pdf

LMK if there is an update to this 2004 Plan.

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Randy
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Re: Crystal discontinues walk-up weekend/holiday tix
« Reply #15 on: 02/08/20, 02:35 PM »

The plan describes "Lot G" as having 125 RV parking spaces and the current RV spaces in "Lot B" being converted to regular parking.   The map does show an expansion of "Lot F".

So weekends at Crystal will get even longer lift lines.   Whoo Hoo.

The Bullion basin lift seems less about skiing and more about being able to promote property development with "ski in ski out".      If that's going to work -- they are going to need a bunch of snow making machines -- They moved the old Bullion Basin lift to Gold Hills due lack of coverage.   
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Jim Oker
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Re: Crystal discontinues walk-up weekend/holiday tix
« Reply #16 on: 02/12/20, 11:38 AM »

I keep seeing  FB posts with photos of ginormous lift lines around the country, and also ginormous traffic backups on the way to ski resorts. It's how it is.

There's one of those photos in this  story about  a day when the  crowds  exceeded expectations at Vail recently Vail Corp apologizes for long lift line
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