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Partnerships
The Addition of Stowe to Mountain Collective May be the Biggest, Most Important Yet

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GREGG
BLANCHARD
   

Last season highlighted a lot of things, but one of them was summed up nicely by a simple tweet.


This tweet (and article) sparked another, written by none other than the New York Times. It read:

“As back-to-back snowstorms have engulfed the Northeast over the past three weeks…ski resorts in Vermont and New Hampshire have witnessed a curious phenomenon for New England: powder. And lots of it. As of Feb. 23 more than 261 inches of snow has fallen at the Jay Peak Resort in Vermont; Stowe and Stratton have gotten 225 and 144 inches…Compare that with the measly total of 115 inches at Park City, Utah, or to Sun Valley, Idaho‚Äôs 113 inches. From Jackson Hole to Whistler-Blackcomb, maddening warm spells have Western powder-hounds tearing their hair out, while in the Northeast, parts of which have started to resemble the Khumbu Icefall, skiers and snowboarders are beginning to talk of an epic year.”

Yes, there was a solid stretch of days and weeks last season where the skiing wasn’t just good in the East, it was significantly better than the West.

The Stage
So let’s set the stage.

Previous to this year, all of Mountain Collective’s partner U.S. resorts existed in neighboring states/provinces. No matter what resort you were visiting, there was at least one neighboring state/province with another pass partner.

The same was true for Powder Alliance and, yes, the Epic Pass’s flagship resorts.

The advantage is also the problem: proximity allows easier travel but proximity means that if weather is bad enough, one state is as likely to be effected as its neighbor.

Enter MAX Pass
The MAX Pass was the first to offer a product that spanned the coasts and their timing couldn’t have been better with last winter’s weather.

maxpassmap

In the East, skiers laughed their way through deep Vermont storms while skiers holding an Epic, Mountain Collective, or Powder Alliance pass wished – perhaps for the first time in their lives – they could drop Beaver Creek from their ticket and add Loon instead.

In a way, last winter was just what the industry needed to give these partnerships a reason to form.

Enter Stowe
And that’s exactly why the addition of Stowe is so strong for the Mountain Collective.

It’s already proven itself as a product that can drive sampling.
It’s already gone through multiple seasons of sales, measurement, and tweaking.
It’s already established its structure in the minds of skiers.

Now it has the weather insurance the EpicPass doesn’t have at a very, very compelling pricepoint. I think the addition of Thredbo is great, but Stowe, in my book, may be the most important name on their list.


About Gregg & SlopeFillers
I've had more first-time visitors lately, so adding a quick "about" section. I started SlopeFillers in 2010 with the simple goal of sharing great resort marketing strategies. Today I run marketing for resort ecommerce and CRM provider Inntopia, my home mountain is the lovely Nordic Valley, and my favorite marketing campaign remains the Ski Utah TV show that sold me on skiing as a kid in the 90s.

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