Mountain Collective Introduces Direct-to-Lift Pass at Most Partner Resorts for 2023-24
Thredbo leaves pass, Valle Nevado and all other partners remain as Mountain Collective announces 2023-24 pricing
The Storm Skiing Journal and Podcast is a reader-supported publication. To receive new posts and support my work, please consider becoming a free or paid subscriber. For a limited time, I’ve brought back the $50 annual subscription rate.
In a podcast conversation that I recorded Monday (and will release tomorrow), with Christian Knapp, former chief marketing officer of Aspen Skiing Company, he joked that, “Mountain Collective has nine lives, Man…”
Over the years, Mountain Collective has added and then lost Whistler, Telluride, Mammoth, Palisades Tahoe, Stowe, Sugarbush, and Hakuba, Japan. The competing Ikon Pass delivers more days at most of Mountain Collective’s best partners, plus dozens more. None of that has mattered: every year, the Mountain Collective returns. Most years, it adds more new ski areas to its roster than it loses.
Knapp, who led the pass’ founding in 2012 (Aspen was and remains the pass’ administrating partner), was also present during the founding of Alterra and the Ikon Pass several years later, and there were “many, many times where we sat in meetings or rooms or on calls saying, ‘This thing’s [the Mountain Collective] gonna be on life support here.’ … But it’s been incredibly resilient.”
Indeed. Today, Mountain Collective returns for its 12th season. Current passholders will receive an email today prompting them to renew at discounted rates: $540 for adults, $430 for ages 13 to 18, $135 for children 12 and under. They will have through March 13 to take advantage of these rates prior to the public sale beginning Tuesday, March 14, when prices debut at $570 for adults, $460 for ages 13-18, and $155 for kids 12 and under. All early-birds will be eligible for a third bonus day at the resort of their choice. Skiers will also be able to purchase the pass with a payment plan for the first time, via Affirm.
Mountain Collective will lose one partner: Thredbo, Australia (2022-23 passes were good at Southern Hemisphere resorts in summer 2022). The pass will retain all other partners, including, notably Valle Nevado, Chile, which Mountain Capital Partners purchased in January. Here’s a look at the 2023-24 lineup:
One big improvement: for the first time, Mountain Collective will mail all passholders a physical pass, which will in many cases provide direct-to-lift access to partner resorts. While Mountain Collective CEO Todd Burnette could not confirm which ski areas would be direct-to-lift next ski season, he said that the “majority” would be, and that “our goal is to have all resorts eventually be direct-to-lift.” Previously, passholders had to pick up a lift ticket at each resort.
Not only has Mountain Collective stuck around – it’s gotten better, rooting itself as the budget alternative to the increasingly expensive and restrictive Ikon Pass and continually improving its product. Even down one partner and ticking upward in price (last year’s adult pass debuted at $539), the Mountain Collective remains a terrific value that can argue for a spot in any skiers’ 2023-24 pass quiver. Here’s a bit more about Mountain Collective’s 2023-24 offerings and evolution, and what they mean for skiers, the pass’ partners, and the already full-throttle early-bird season pass sales season:
Below the paid subscriber jump: what to make of Thredbo’s exit and Valle Nevado’s decision to remain, Mountain Collective versus Ikon Base Passe, the benefits of direct-to-lift, and more.