Ikon vs. Epic: What ski pass are you going with this year?
FRISCO — Monday, Sept. 2, is the early bird pricing deadline for an Epic Pass, so we went to Frisco’s Main Street to ask residents and visitors what ski passes they were planning to buy this year.
With the four Summit County ski areas now split with two on Ikon Pass and two on Epic Pass, plus several independent passes, skiers and riders have new options and many decided to jump ship on the pass they had previously used.
Sam Burack and Isabella Vitti, a young couple living in Frisco, shared that Vitti went with the Arapahoe Basin Ski Area season pass because of the price at $449 while Burack went with Ikon, priced at $749 or $1,049 based on access.
“I like supporting Copper over Vail, and I don’t really like skiing Breck anymore. It gets too icy,” Burack said.
Young Frisco resident Ryan Fry said he bought a five-pack at Copper this year since he lives so close.
There were lots of Denver families out and about on Main Street that have second homes in the county. One family had a home in Keystone, so naturally, they went with a Keystone Ski Resort pass.
Another family that had a second home outside of Frisco said they chose a Loveland Ski Area season pass. The family talked about how the Loveland pass is comparatively affordable at $439 for adults. Since a Loveland pass gets you a membership with Powder Alliance, passholders also get days at Copper Mountain, Ski Granby Ranch, Monarch Mountain and several other resorts.
One family that did not own a residence in Summit County said they bought A-Basin passes this year because they have young kids and the ski area is closer to Denver.
Mary O’Reilly, a part-time Breckenridge resident, stuck with Epic for her eighth year in a row because it gives her easy access to Breckenridge Ski Resort and other nearby resorts. Epic is priced at $939 or $699 depending on access.
Visitors from Colorado Springs also made the trek up to Frisco for their holiday weekend. Couple Heather Gibbs and Johnathan Morris went with Ikon while couple Kurt and Holly Storey are leaning toward Epic. The Storeys said they had skied at Copper for years but switched to Epic last year because of the significant military discount. Gibbs and Morris said they went with Ikon because they have friends and family who live near the Ikon resorts.
Price was a major decision making factor, and several of those surveyed decided on a single-resort pass because of the lower pricetag.
As Ikon and Epic gear up for the 2019-20 season, news continues to come out about additions to passes: A-Basin announced in August that it would join Ikon, Vail is touting its yet-to-close acquisition of Peak Resorts and Ikon recently said it would add days at the Swiss Matterhorn.
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Warm and dry conditions to start the winter have kept all but the higher elevation slopes free of snow. That is expected to change by the end of the week and the avalanche hazard could start to climb, according to Colorado Avalanche Information Center.