Get full access to Outside Learn, our online education hub featuring in-depth fitness, nutrition, and adventure courses and more than 2,000 instructional videos when you sign up for Outside+ Sign up for Outside+ today.
One week after Vail Resorts announced its acquisition of 17 additional ski resorts when a merger with Peak Resorts becomes finalized, Alterra Mountain Co. revealed on August 2 that coveted Colorado resort Arapahoe Basin is joining the Ikon Pass for the 2019-’20 season.
Four days later after the Ikon Pass news, the Mountain Collective Pass announced that A-Basin would also be joining the multi-resort pass, bringing the total number of ski areas available on the Mountain Collective to eighteen.
Arapahoe Basin Ski Area, also known as “The Legend” for its rich history and character, is located just 68 miles from Denver, Colo. and sits on the Continental Divide in the Rockies, a high-alpine perch that means the ski area regularly boasts one of the longest ski season in Colorado, most years opening in late October and spinning lifts through July 4. This past season, the ski area expanded its skiable terrain by 30-percent and added a new chairlift.
Arapahoe Basin Expands: The Anti Resort
“Arapahoe Basin is a beloved brand among skiers and riders and we are proud that the destination has joined the Ikon Pass community,” said Erik Forsell, chief marketing officer of Alterra Mountain Company.
Until the end of last ski season, the resort founded in 1946 was in a long-term partnership with Vail Resorts, offering Epic Pass-holders unrestricted access to its slopes for nearly 20 years. But in February 2018, A-Basin announced it would sever its ties to the Epic Pass for the 2019-’20 season, citing overcrowding, parking issues, and a decline in the guest experience as a result of the increased influx of Epic Pass-holders to the resort.
Read more: A-Basin and Vail Resorts End Partnership
By partnering with the Ikon Pass for the coming ski season, the independently owned and operated resort will offer those who have Ikon Passes seven days of unrestricted access to its slopes (some restrictions apply on the Ikon Base Pass).
“Arapahoe Basin is thrilled to partner with the Ikon Pass and join its community of like-minded mountain destinations. A-Basin is a bold, aspiration mountain with legendary character that invites skiers and riders to find adventure at every turn, an ideal fit for the Ikon Pass,” said Alan Henceroth, A-Basin’s chief operating officer.
Mountain Collective passholders will be able to ski at Arapahoe Basin for two days during the 2019/2020 ski season and be able to purchase lift tickets at a 50-percent discount thereafter.
“With the addition of A-Basin, The Mountain Collective continues to evolve and to offer passholders a unique collection of aspirational resorts with no blackout dates,” says Christian Knapp, Chief Marketing Officer at Aspen Skiing Company, in a statement issued by the Mountain Collective. “There are a myriad of pass products in the market these days, and skiers can pick the one that works best for them. The Mountain Collective Pass fills a unique niche at a price point that works.”
A-Basin will continue to offer skiers and riders its own season pass products, including unlimited, unrestricted access for the 2019-‘20 season. Adult passes are priced at $449, youth passes (ages 15-18) at $309, and child (ages 6-14) passes retail between $99-$199.
Colorado-based Ikon Pass holders will be pleased that they now have access to a sixth Colorado resort—along with Copper Mountain, Eldora, Steamboat, Winter Park Resort, and Aspen Snowmass—especially considering the convenient and accessible location of A-Basin relative to the major population centers of the Front Range. Arapahoe Basin pass holders, however, may still be wary of the effects this new Ikon Pass partnership will have on their local hill, and whether the overcrowding issues that came with the Epic Pass partnership will be alleviated by a more restricted partnership with Ikon.
The Ikon Pass, currently retailing at $1,049 for adults, now offers unlimited access to 14 ski resorts across the U.S. and Canada, and up to seven days at 24 other destinations worldwide.
The Mountain Collective pass is currently on sale at $489 for adults and offers two days of skiing at 18 resorts worldwide.
Jon Jay contributed to reporting on this story.