Today was my first day on the slopes with the new lift ticket policy. Some of you folks who have been skiing at Mt Bachelor since the beginning of the season may have some positive experiences with this new crazy system. My first impression is, just plain stupid. Nice try, but whoever designed the system must have been heavily medicated. First the assessment chart. At first glance one would need a PHD in rocket science to decipher it. Then the rating system. By whose standards do we evaluate Rough, Manageable, Fair, Comfortable? Are they by Rambo standards or Wayne Newton? Who is the lift and weather Czar that makes these daily assignments? I was told that the decision is made the night before on pricing for the next day. That's pretty omniscient! What happens if the day does not turn out as expected? You've shelled out your 69 bucks and then what? A refund? Not! Or the opposite: You started with a bargain day for $49 dollars and then the sun comes out and the wind dies down and then what? You think they are going to open the summit? Doubt it! What incentive does the Mt. have, once it has decided on a $49 day, to open anything additionally - like on some of those great powder days? The whole system seems wrought with too much ambiguity and grey zones. (There are so many scenarios that I could imagine.) And doesn't this penalize folks who don't ski on the Summit or the backside. "Yeah I paid $69 dollars to ski all day on Sunrise because it was deemed comfortable."
Will this be another unsuccessful attempt on the part of Mt. Bachelor to try to be profitable and attract skiers? Anybody want to put odds on this system still being in place next season?
Editor's note: While Mt. Bachelor sets the initial pricing based on the forecast for the following day, it can change the rate based on real conditions in the morning before the first ticket it has sold, which it has done four times this season, according to Marketing Director Alex Kaufman.