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Ideas
Is it time for your resort to embrace uphill traffic instead of just allow it?

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GREGG
BLANCHARD
       

Uphill access.

Since I started skiing 25 years ago, it’s gone from nothing to very much something. Something a small, but loyal (and growing), group of people love.

They get some great exercise before/after their work day in their favorite place.

An Idea
Hundreds of resorts have started to adapt to this by creating uphill access routes. Some have uphill passes. Some have clear signage. Some have detailed policies.

In other words, resorts are starting to better manage uphillers.

But the idea I want to share is this. What if instead of just managing this group, resorts embraced this group. Celebrated this group. Made this group feel special instead of just allowed.

What That Looks Like
This step could be extremely simple and be nothing more than taking what you already do for daytime skiers and do the same for this group. So things like:

  • Celebrate skiers who reach certain milestones (ie, vert, days, streaks, etc.)
  • Social posts talking about how much you love your uphillers (as much as you love the Jones family you usually highlight)
  • Add routes for different skill levels or time commitments (ie, folks who may not want to or have time to ski top to bottom)
  • Help first timers get started instead of just speaking to those who know how it works
  • Give this activity a better, more exciting name

There’s something about uphill access that has really been intriguing me lately. When you think about folks desire to get outside, when you think about how unawesome gyms are, when you think about the health benefits of a hike up/ski down, when I look at my own behavior and think about how many times I’ve been intrigued by taking a quick run before work.

Something There?
Well, I can’t help but think that there’s something there. Something to keep skiers more involved with your mountain, something that better aligns to the health benefits message of skiing, something that could generate revenue without making midday crowds worse, something that could give loyal skiers another way to make your resort part of their life.

Just like the resorts who first embraced (instead of just allowed) snowboards carved out a special place for themselves, it feels like the same could happen here.

But I don’t think that something can become more than it is if folks still feel like it’s something resorts don’t actually want you to try and will only grudgingly put up with if you do.


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FYI: I'll be talking about measuring resort conversion rates during Insight Online on May 26.