GNU Snowboards team rider Temple Cummins snowboards at Hurricane Ridge. (Jesse Major/Peninsula Daily News)

GNU Snowboards team rider Temple Cummins snowboards at Hurricane Ridge. (Jesse Major/Peninsula Daily News)

OUTDOORS: Hurricane Ridge joining forces with other independent ski areas

Offering access to multiple resorts with new Indy Pass

HARD TO IMAGINE the coming winter ski and snowboard season in the dog days of August, but there’s an added incentive and a way to save some money that benefits winter sports enthusiasts at Hurricane Ridge.

For the 2019-20 ski season the Hurricane Ridge Ski and Snowboard Area has teamed with independently owned resorts across the Pacific Northwest and the country to offer the Indy Pass, which will provide two lift tickets at each of 34 resorts — 68 days of skiing for $199.

Essentially, the Indy Pass resorts have formed a marketing cooperative to inform the public of their offerings in the face of consolidation of high-profile, corporate-owned resorts such as the Summit at Snoqualmie or Stevens Pass.

The Indy Pass resorts are small to medium-sized and not already included on other multi-resort season passes.

Fourteen of the resorts, including Hurricane Ridge, are part of the “Western Region.”

Washington resorts included are White Pass, Mission Ridge and 49 Degrees North.

Hoodo Ski Resort at Mount Hood is Oregon’s offering and Idaho boasts Brundage Mountain and Silver Mountain.

Apex Mountain Resort in Penticton, British Columbia also is included.

They are targeting up-and-coming skiers and snowboarders who are left out in the cold by the bigger resorts and hoping to increase the number of people visiting their sites.

Aging demographics

An estimated 8.5 million people have quit skiing or riding in the past 10 years, according to the National Ski Areas Association.

The number of active skiers has declined since the 1980s.

With the baby boomer generation aging out of the sport, these independent ski areas realize they need to nurture a new generation.

The number one reason cited for leaving the sport was high cost with research showing lift ticket prices average $131 on weekend

“The average non-passholder skis 4.3 days a year, and this pass is designed for that person,” says Doug Fish, of Fish Marketing and Strategy, the Oregon-based advertising agency behind the new Indy Pass.

Skiers who purchase the pass before Sept. 16 can make four interest-free payments of $49.75.

For more information, visit indyskipass.com.

Buy now and save

There’s good and bad associated with the following information.

Hurricane Ridge Ski and Snowboard Area has announced that individual and family season pass prices for the 2019-20 ski and snowboard season will rise beginning Sept. 16.

The individual season pass price will rise to $300 from $270.

A family pass for five people or less will rise to $550 from $500.

Here’s the good news: season passes for the 2019-20 ski and snowboard season can be purchased at 2018-19 season pass rates until Sept. 15.

To purchase, or for more information, visit hurricaneridge.com.

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