Indy Pass Adds Bluewood, Kelly Canyon, Sawmill, two Nordic centers; Loses Marmot Basin
Releases full 2021-22 roster and blackout tiers, prices will increase May 18
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Indy Pass today announced major updates to its 2022-23 product line, adding three new downhill and two new cross-country ski areas; dropping a key western partner; introducing a new, somewhat simplified blackout grid; and rebranding its core pass product
The coalition’s new downhill partners are Bluewood, Washington; Kelly Canyon, Idaho; and Ski Sawmill, Pennsylvania. Marmot Basin, the Alberta monster that joined the pass less than a year ago, will leave, becoming Indy’s most high-profile departure to date. All other partners will remain for the 2022-23 ski season.
Two more major cross-country centers will join the pass: Rikert Nordic Center in Vermont and Enchanted Forest in New Mexico. The additions bump Indy’s Nordic portfolio to nine for the 2022-23 season – an overview of the other seven is here.
Indy will also tame its growing product menu by rebranding the core pass as the “Indy Base Pass.” Here’s a grid that lays out the current offerings (prices will increase between $20 and $50 on May 18 “in order to maintain our uncrowded slopes and lodges and provide a minimum per-visit payout for our partner resorts,” according to Indy’s press release):
"We decided to rebrand the Indy Base Pass to help distinguish it from our unrestricted, premium Indy+ Pass,” said Indy Pass founder Doug Fish. “All of our regions enjoy 100+ days per season, and with our growing list of 92 resorts, Indy Base Pass holders have numerous opportunities to enjoy uncrowded slopes using the lowest-priced pass on the planet.”
With today’s additions (and one subtraction), the Indy Pass is set to offer two days each at 92 ski areas (83 downhill and nine cross-country), a number that is almost certain to grow over the offseason.
With the spiraling number of independent ski areas (Indy launched with just 34 partners in summer 2019), the pass’ blackout grid had grown messy, and Indy took steps to reduce the confusion, reducing the number of blackout tiers from five to four and the total number of blackout days by seven percent. Three partners will drop blackouts altogether: Saddleback, Blacktail, and Sundown, and an additional seven, including Cannon and Mission Ridge, will reduce their number of blackout days. Eight ski areas that previously had no blackouts, however, have added them, and three more increased their total number. Here’s a breakdown of all the access-tier changes for next season:
All together, 29 ski areas will have some sort of blackouts and 54 will not. None of the Nordic centers will have blackouts. I’ve included a full blackout chart and additional analysis further down in this article.
The three new additions add strategic density in regions of existing strength for Indy – the Northeast and Pacific Northwest – without overwhelming the network with the kind of next-door-neighbor arrangements that would cannibalize season passes or encourage rampant overuse.
The loss of Marmot Basin, a remote but impressive hunk of Canadian Rockies real estate, somewhat dents Indy’s destination appeal in the West. It is only the third departure in Indy’s three-year history, and the most prominent. Indy’s western network remains robust, however, and passholders should expect some churn as the broader multi-mountain pass network continues its rapid evolution.
Here’s a bit more about Indy’s 2022-23 partner network and blackout tiers, and what the news means for passholders, the pass, and skiing at large: