By Karen D. Lorentz
Okemo Mountain Resort has announced its 2018-19 season pass options and with them the new benefits of a partnership with Vail Resorts’ Epic passes.
On March 14 Vail Resorts, Inc. announced that the Triple Peaks resorts of Okemo, Mount Sunapee (N.H.), and Crested Butte (Colo.) were the latest areas to join the Epic Pass in “a long-term alliance beginning with the 2018-2019 winter season.”
The Triple Peaks areas are managed by the Mueller family. The new partnerships bring the total number of Epic Pass mountain resorts to 64 in eight countries.
The 10-year old Epic Pass has expanded over the years to include unlimited skiing at the 15 mountain areas that Vail Resorts owns, limited days at 39 partner resorts in Europe and Japan, and (starting next winter) seven days at the newly added partnership areas — Telluride (Colo.), six resorts of the Canadian Rockies (Fernie, Kicking Horse, and Kimberly in British Columbia, Nakiska in Alberta, and Mont Sainte Anne and Stoneham in Quebec), and the three Triple Peaks resorts (Okemo, Sunapee and Crested Butte).
Epic, Epic Local and Epic Australia season passes will all receive the seven days of skiing and snowboarding with no blackout dates at each of the three Triple Peaks resorts and the other North American partner resorts.
Epic 7-Day passholders can use any, or all seven, of their total days, and Epic 4-Day passholders can use any, or all four, of their total days of skiing and snowboarding with no blackout dates at Triple Peaks’ resorts.
After the seven or four days have been used, passholders will receive 50 percent off lift access at these areas.
“We are proud to join the Epic Pass in a long-term season pass alliance with Okemo, Mount Sunapee and Crested Butte. Our focus on guest service, reinvestment in our resorts and outstanding ski experiences both in New England and the Rocky Mountains aligns well with the Epic Pass and Vail’s remarkable line-up of resorts. We expect this partnership will be a significant benefit to our guests and skiers and riders around the world for years to come,” said Tim Mueller, president of Triple Peaks, LLC.
There are also benefits for those who purchase Okemo Ultimate and Classic season passes. They will receive 50 percent off lift tickets at all Vail Resorts owned areas, which include Stowe in Vermont.
Director of Public Relations Bonnie MacPherson said the Epic partnership provides extra value for Okemo passholders. Partnership season passes also fill a nice niche for skiers and riders who want to visit a variety of resorts rather than a specific mountain. That can lead to people discovering Okemo, a potential benefit for the area, MacPherson noted.
Okemo’s “early-bird” (best) pass prices are good through April 30 after which prices increase. Okemo’s Ultimate Pass provides unrestricted skiing at Okemo, Mount Sunapee and Crested Butte; offers discounts for retail, culinary, preferred parking, Adventure Zone and Evolution Bike Park, buddy tickets and includes daily access at the Nordic Center and Ice House among other perks. It costs $1,139 for adults (19-64); $819, Young Adult (13-18); $749, Junior (7-12); $679, Senior (65-69); and $459, Super Senior (70-79).
The Classic Pass provides unrestricted skiing at Okemo and Mount Sunapee and summer discounts to the Adventure Zone and Evolution Bike Park. It costs $899, adults; $569, Young Adult; $479, Junior; $509, Senior; $349, Super Senior; $39 for 6 and under or 80+.
The Midweek (Monday through Friday) Pass, which has some holiday blackout days does not include the Epic discount but represents a tremendous value at $379 for ages 7-69 and $259 for ages 70+.
Children 6 and younger ski free every day at Okemo (Okemo Real.Easy RFID card required). However, Okemo’s Classic Pass is available to them ($39) to allow families to bypass the ticket window and provide direct-to-lift access all season long, MacPherson explained.