Idaho Independent Ski Resorts Decide To Cooperate Instead Of Compete

Feb 9, 2016

As part of a new pricing structure for Bogus Basin Ski Resort, managers recently announced new partnerships with Tamarack and Soldier Mountain. Starting next winter Bogus season pass owners will get some time at Tamarack and vice versa.

Tamarack general manager Brad Larsen says companies that own multiple ski areas have offered multi-resort packages for a long time. He says there's a more recent but quickly growing trend of independent resorts joining forces on their season pass deals. He says the collaborations announced last week are the first of their kind in Idaho, and reflect changing realities for the ski industry.

“The time of rapid ski area expansion is, for the most part, over,” Larsen says. “Many resorts are not adding more terrain; they’re not adding more chair-lifts. So they’re looking to add value and pop to their season pass products.”   

Larsen says collaboration has required a change in thinking about the nature of competition in the industry.

“The experience here versus Bogus are much different. So the two of us can co-exist without really cannibalizing each other’s customers.”

For example he says, night skiing is big at Bogus but not at Tamarack while Tamarack has snow making capabilities that Bogus doesn’t.

The new general manager at Bogus, Brad Wilson, also says the thinking on how to compete has changed. Wilson says the big competition for Bogus is not Tamarack but those companies that own multiple resorts as well as the popularity of other activities, like year-round sports that might keep people off the slopes altogether. So just convincing people to choose skiing is essential.

Find Adam Cotterell on Twitter @cotterelladam

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