| AspenTimes.com

Now a national champion, Faulhaber talks about surprise season in ski pipe

This was supposed to be a feeling out season for Hanna Faulhaber, not so much one to conquer the competition.

Oh well.

“Going into Rev Tour, me and my coaches were, ‘We’re going to go experience it, not really expect much.’ Then as the season progressed it got better and better,” Faulhaber said. “It all built up and made my confidence level go up.”

A freshman at Basalt High School, the 14-year-old Faulhaber recently completed her first season competing at the FIS level, where she predominantly is a halfpipe skier. Expectations were realistic, for lack of a better word, for Faulhaber entering the season. After all, there’s no reason to think a newbie to the FIS stage could compete with kids that have four or five years of experience already.

Then, she started winning. She won the women’s halfpipe contest on Feb. 12 at Copper Mountain, a Revolution Tour event, for her first major victory. Only a few days later, she finished third at the Aspen Freeskiing Open, a Nor-Am Cup event, which was arguably a more impressive result than her Rev Tour win.

On top of it all, she also competed in January’s FIS Junior World Ski Championships in Leysin, Switzerland, where she finished sixth in the finals.

To cap it off, Faulhaber competed in the USASA National Championships earlier this month at Copper Mountain, where she won the women’s halfpipe contest for her first national championship. She even took third in the slopestyle contest a day later.

While FIS requires athletes to be at least 14 to compete, USASA events, including nationals, do not have those age requirements, allowing Faulhaber to have competed at nationals last year.

“It meant a lot because last year it wasn’t as good,” Faulhaber said of winning this year. “I hit my head a little bit and then the ski patrollers grabbed me and said, ‘You have a concussion,’ and they would let me go in the pipe again but wouldn’t let me compete. It was quite a redemption this year.”

Faulhaber also battled with a concussion this year, hindering her learning the trick that set her apart at nationals, a flare, which is basically a backflip with a small rotation. She landed the trick for the first time in competition at nationals.

“There were a few girls that were doing a flare. But just a week prior to going to nationals I decked the halfpipe and fell back in and got a concussion doing a flare,” Faulhaber said. “I started doing it in the bag in December to get to snow in January. I would also slip out onto my hip so I gave it a big break and then came back to it and started landing it, then got concussed.”

Healthy at nationals, it all came together. Now she will look toward her second season at the FIS level with even more possibilities out there. She plans to compete in many of the same events, but could add something a bit bigger, such as the Copper Grand Prix, or other similar Nor-Am or World Cup events. She’ll also compete at the New Zealand Freeski Open. Faulhaber’s mother is from New Zealand, a place she has been many times, but this would be her first significant competition there.

Faulhaber said for her to compete at that higher level she will need to work on getting more air.

“Amplitude is a big one,” she said. “I have a problem with speed checking, because I’m a little nervous going into a trick. I speed check and then I lose amplitude as the run goes on.”

Just something else for the rising star to conquer.

acolbert@aspentimes.com

Clubhouse Chronicles: Looking ahead to the summer at AVSC

Last week, we celebrated the end of our competitive season with our annual awards banquet. We recognized community members for their hard work, great results and strong character.

It was nice to gather and reflect on all that’s gone on in the past couple of months, a time during which athletes and staff were constantly on the go, bouncing around the continent, and in some cases, the world. It’s always nice to hit pause and appreciate all our teams have accomplished, but unsurprisingly, after a brief respite, our athletes are eager to get back into the mountains and push themselves and their peers!

We are looking forward to a great summer at AVSC. Summer is a fun time for us — full of cross-training, exploring our backyard on bikes, foot and more. We build strength, we work with new coaches and teammates, and some of us will travel far afield in search of snow. Much of this training is intentional, building toward starting our winter season on the strongest foot possible. Yet it’s also a time to try new things, work on our general athleticism, explore our surroundings and have a lot of fun. We have an awesome lineup of programs to keep local athletes of all ages busy, whether they’re currently enrolled in an AVSC program or not.

We are excited to be celebrating our 10th summer of mountain biking at AVSC. This summer, we are offering four levels of programming, starting with free introductory programs and continuing all the way up to a full-fledged mountain bike team, which will compete in the Aspen Cycling Club mountain bike races as well as the Aspen Snowmass Enduro series. A developmental program will bridge the gap between the two. On top of the technical skills honed, bikers at all levels will learn about bike maintenance and safety, environmental stewardship, and our local trail systems.

Last year was our first offering free introductory mountain bike programming, thanks in large part to a fleet of bicycles donated by Giant; we’re excited to build on that this summer in Carbondale and Aspen. AVSC’s mission is to provide all youth in the greater Roaring Fork Valley the opportunity to excel as athletes and as people through winter sports — biking in the summer is a natural extension of that effort. Our coaches inspire our athletes to excel, chasing passions and developing grit while becoming a part of our mountain community and culture. Whether on snow or dirt, the value and ethos of the experience remains the same.

The competitive bike team will be coached by Sari Anderson (our Spring Gulch Bill Koch Youth Ski League director), a former professional mountain bike and adventure racer who has many (multi-sport) endurance titles under her belt, including a U.S. Mountain Bike Marathon National Championship title. Sari is excited to provide high-level training, take our competitive bike program to the next level, and offer some special clinics such as women’s-specific rides.

Beyond mountain biking, we have many summer programs both at home and abroad. Thanks to Aspen Skiing Co., our freestyle and snowboard athletes will work on air awareness at Buttermilk Glacier, the training park that is built out of the leftover snow from X Games. Our eldest alpine athletes are headed to Norway to train with Lars Kristoffersen, father of Henrik Kristoffersen, Olympic medalist and 2019 World Cup champion. We have trampoline and ramp camps at the Hildebrand Sideyard Project at the AVSC clubhouse, a favorite of Olympic silver medalist Alex Ferreira. There are fitness camps geared toward our Nordic athletes (starting at age 10) that anyone — Nordic athlete or not — is welcome to join.

Check out www.teamavsc.org/summer to register or learn more.

Clubhouse Chronicles is a twice-a-month, behind-the-scenes column written by the Aspen Valley Ski and Snowboard Club during the winter months. It runs in the Friday Outdoors section.

Aspen Cycling Club gearing up for new season

As the new president for the Aspen Cycling Club, Andy Ralston finds himself in a bit of a dream role. The nonprofit organization is a consistent presence most Wednesdays during the summer in the Roaring Fork Valley, and Ralston enjoys bringing it to life.

“It’s super fun. You get to build a fantasy calendar of bike rides around Aspen and then actually make it happen, which is amazing,” he said. “People should just be able to show up on Wednesday night and have a friendly, easy reception and jump in and have a good time.”

The Aspen Cycling Club is gearing up for another season, with the first of 16 races scheduled for May 1. Those 16 events are split equally between road and mountain bike races.

To get everyone amped up for the fast-approaching season, the club will host a 6 p.m. kick-off party Wednesday at Home Team BBQ, located at the base of Buttermilk Ski Area.

“We are trying to give our racers a chance to meet the board, meet the sponsors, ask questions — give a little more of a human face to the club, so people can spot us at races,” Ralston said.

Then, on Monday, the club will host a free road racing skills clinic at 5:30 p.m. Led by local legend Dean Hill, the clinic will allow newbies and veterans alike to fine-tune their skills before the first races. The clinic is going to be held at the Aspen Motorsports Park in Woody Creek, barring any weather issues.

The clinic is part of the bigger plan of getting more people on bikes.

“That’s geared toward people who might be a little intimidated by road bike ricing, because it can be scary to jump in a pack of 20 riders for your first time and not really know anybody and you are moving fast,” Ralston said. “Dean is super tuned into that stuff, and he’ll give good, easy-to-digest advice.”

The first race of 2019 will be the May 1 Lower River Road Time Trial. While opening with a time trial is commonplace, in recent years the first event had usually been the Difficult Time Trial toward Independence Pass, but they decided to move it downvalley due to the unreliable weather this time of year.

The first mountain bike race is scheduled for May 15, the Prince Creek Circuit near Carbondale. Many of the popular and established races are back, such as the Emma Roubaix, Sky Mountain Park mountain bike race, the Missouri Heights road race and the season-ending Maroon Bells Time Trial on Sept. 4.

Once again sponsored by The North Face, the Aspen Cycling Club also went through a visual rebranding this past offseason, with a new logo and new look for their website. As great as The North Face has been to the club, Ralston said they are still hoping to add more sponsors throughout the summer.

“It’s been a tough year in terms of fundraising and we are looking at ways for sponsors to come on, even during the season,” he said. “They don’t have to sign on preseason, and we are open to creative ideas for how people can support the club.”

Ralston, 30, replaces Tyler Newton as the club’s president. Ralston moved to the valley from New York City in 2014 and has been on the board of directors the past few seasons. He currently works as the business development manager for Backbone Media in Carbondale.

Ralston founded a bike racing club back in college, allowing him to learn about his love for working behind-the-scenes in the sport. He’s hoping to bring that same passion into his role with the Aspen Cycling Club.

“Tyler Newton was president for three years and kept the club in amazing shape. I’m inheriting something that is up and running really well,” Ralston said. “It’s awesome that we can present 16 of those races every year. But we also, with things like the skills clinic, want to make it easy for people who are new to bike racing to jump in. With Tyler, the club started off down that path and I’d like to continue in that direction to make it more accessible.”

acolbert@aspentimes.com

Hanging Lake summer permit registrations top 6,000 in first two weeks of new online system

In the past two weeks, more than 6,180 people have reserved and secured permits to visit Hanging Lake in Glenwood Canyon during the 2019 peak-season beginning May 1, the Forest Service announced Friday.

The online reservation system for the permits and shuttle to Hanging Lake trailhead launched April 1.

The system was developed by H2O, the contractor working in partnership with the city of Glenwood Springs and the Forest Service to roll out the system that limits hikers on Hanging Lake to 615 per day.

At Visit Glenwood Springs, we are pleased that the implementation of the reservation system has been a smooth process. The feedback from visitors has been very positive,” said Lisa Langer, director of tourism promotion for Visit Glenwood.

She said there is plenty of opportunity to secure a reservation to visit Hanging Lake throughout the peak season, May through October.

To date, July is the most popular month to reserve a permit to hike to Hanging Lake, a trend reflected in prior year’s visitation numbers.

The majority of people making reservations are coming from the Front Range of Colorado, but hundreds of out-of-state visitors have also reserved their permits to visit this treasured Colorado location.

The Hanging Lake Express shuttle will officially begin to deliver hikers to the trailhead for the season on May 1. Visits will be staggered throughout the day to avoid congestion on the trail and avoid the impacts of large crowds on the environment.

“Once again, people are proving just how much they love Hanging Lake, and we’ve been overjoyed with the public response to the reservation system,” Forest Service District Ranger Aaron Mayville said.

“We look forward to the shuttle launching in May and to the positive changes that we’ve worked hard to put in place,” Mayville said.

On the Fly: April’s gifts

Tired of midge fishing for the past five months? April is a gift for winter-weary fly-fishers here in the valley.

Blue-winged olives are the harbinger of spring here, and there is some furious surface activity already underway on the lower Roaring Fork and Colorado rivers. BWOs, or baetis, are on the scene in spring and fall, and the fish are keyed in on them almost exclusively at this point. But this is just the tip of the iceberg.

Just mentioning the word “caddis” causes most of us to shudder and salivate in anticipation of skating dries and exploding surface action. Tax day through Mother’s Day is the sweet spot for caddis fishing, even though they will be on the menu for the next five months. Be on the water midday and again at dusk to keep that rod bent. Most people say the Arkansas River has the best caddis fishing, but local guides know better.

Golden stoneflies are the giants amongst lilliputian bugs we normally deal with, and these aquatic double cheeseburgers are in the process of molting right now. Stoneflies are extremely vulnerable to trout when they shed their exoskeletons and are temporarily whitish-yellow in color, and it’s no secret that blonde stonefly nymphs are on the end of many fly fishers tippets right now.

April also brings pike and carp fishing back to the forefront, especially for guides’ day-off excursions. Most people jealously guard their secret spots, especially when it comes to carp, and for good reasons. Tricking these paranoid 10-, 20- and 30-pound omnivores isn’t easy, and can be just as challenging as stalking bonefish on Bahamian flats.

Before you know it, we will be talking about green drakes, pale morning duns and yellow sallies, and midging will seem like a distant memory. On those complex hatch summer days, you just may long for those simplified midge-only winter hatches! Be careful what you wish for.

This column is provided by Taylor Creek Fly Shops in Aspen and Basalt. Taylor Creek can be reached at 970-927-4374.

Aspen’s Gorsuch, Bleiler headed to Colorado Snowsports Hall of Fame in 2019 class

The Colorado Snowsports Hall of Fame will grow by two Aspenites in October when Jeff Gorsuch and Gretchen Bleiler are officially inducted into its 2019 class. The organization and museum, based out of Vail, announced this year’s class on Friday.

The duo join a list of no less than 40 Aspen locals who already are in the snowsports hall of fame. Notable names include Bob Beattie, Chris Davenport, Chris Klug, Klaus Obermeyer and Spyder Sabich, among many others.

Gorsuch, who will go in as a “sports builder,” has run his family’s retail business for 25 years. A former ski racer himself, his philanthropy has long been felt throughout the Roaring Fork Valley, especially through his work with the Aspen Valley Ski and Snowboard Club.

“He is a huge part of what we do, right from the outreach and the equipment that he donates to give kids the opportunity to ski,” said Mark Godomsky, AVSC’s executive director. “Just an unbelievable community member and supporter of AVSC. I would guess there is nobody in Colorado supporting kids to get involved with skiing to the level that Jeff and his family are.”

Bleiler is one of the most accomplished snowboarders in American history. Competing in the halfpipe, she won four X Games gold medals and won Olympic silver at the 2006 Games in Italy. Since retiring in 2014, Bleiler has continued to be an Aspen fixture with many entrepreneurial and advocacy interests, including her work with Protect Our Winters.

“It just goes back to the tradition of this club,” Godomsky said. “It may be 2,600 kids that goes from beginners to Olympians, but over the course of time we have produced some of the best in the country and this is just another testament with Gretchen getting into the hall of fame. She came through the program.”

The rest of the 2019 hall of fame class includes Martin Hart of Steamboat Springs and Steve Raymond, who co-founded the Adaptive Spirit program and was a major fundraiser for the U.S. Paralympic Ski Team. Winter Park’s Jake Hoeschler will also enter as the 2019 Pioneer Hall of Fame selection.

The official induction ceremony will be held Oct. 26 in Vail.

acolbert@aspentimes.com

Kate Oldham given AVSC’s biggest award at end-of-season banquet Friday at Buttermilk

Kate Oldham took a lot of people by surprise this season, including herself and her coaches. In return, it was only fitting her season ended with another surprise in the form of the Andy Mill award, the highest individual honor handed out each year by the Aspen Valley Ski and Snowboard Club.

“It was totally unexpected, but it’s a humongous honor,” Oldham said following the AVSC’s awards banquet Friday evening at Buttermilk. “I didn’t see it coming and it means a lot to have August introduce me and to have August talk about the award and have him up there and have my parents here and be able to share it with my team.”

August Teague, who is the Nordic program director and national competition coach for AVSC, introduced Oldham prior to handing her the award. A junior at Colorado Rocky Mountain School in Carbondale, Oldham had a breakthrough season in cross-country skiing, her first at the U18 level.

“It’s pretty cool to see Kate’s results all season. We really went into this year as a year to prepare ourselves for next year,” Teague said. “She was a first year under-18 and we really wanted to take her to U.S. championships and expose her to that next level of racing. As she always does, she shined bright and outperformed our expectations.”

She earned all-American honors this winter, was named to the U18 national team for the Scando Cup in Estonia and dominated on the Rocky Mountain Nordic circuit, among other accomplishments.

“It was definitely a whirlwind, but in the best way,” Oldham said of her season. “I put a lot of work in this summer and it kind of just flew by. Then I got to the winter and things kind of fell into place. I had good skis and good coaches and good support. And it just kind of happened. I had a lot of fun racing and I think that had a lot to do with it.”

Oldham wants to ski in college and spent her spring break visiting some schools out east. With all the success she had this season, Teague said the sky is the limit on what she can reach over the next few years.

“She is on track to take the next step to the college level and potentially beyond, depending on what she chooses,” Teague said. “Kate is prime and ready to go if that’s what she wants. If she wants to pursue the U.S. ski team, that door is open.”

A PLETHORA OF AWARDS

Oldham’s was only the final of numerous awards handed out at Bumps on Friday. She also was the Nordic representative for the “Pursuit of Excellence” award, handed out to a top athlete in each of the four main disciplines. The Andy Mill award is then selected from those four.

Shane Serrano (snowboard), Jack Bowers (alpine) and Hanna Faulhaber (freestyle) also were named “Pursuit of Excellence” winners based off their outstanding seasons.

Among other notable awards is the Willoughby award, handed out to a single athlete who demonstrated tremendous accomplishments in both athletics and academics. That award went to Aspen High School senior Colt Whitley, another Nordic skier.

The banquet more or less put an end to AVSC’s winter season, the third under executive director Mark Godomsky.

“It’s just a great opportunity to wrap up the season and celebrate individual accomplishments,” Godomsky said, “but probably more so to get together as a community and just recognize all the kids and the hard work they have done.”

acolbert@aspentimes.com

AVSC’s Garrett Russell coaching cross-country skiing in Alaska, Australia

Garrett Russell is always looking for unique travel opportunities, and his knowledge of Nordic skiing has opened many doors for him to do so. Russell, who is the Bill Koch Youth Ski League director for the Aspen Valley Ski and Snowboard Club, has spent the past week teaching in northern Alaska through a program called Skiku.

“You go with a group of people who may coach Nordic skiing or have a passion for it and want to pass on their skills,” Russell said prior to leaving for Alaska last week. “We will be working during their P.E. class. We will be taking them out and outfitting them with a bunch of skis.”

Russell traveled to the village of Point Lay, which is located within the Artic Circle, this week where he was working with the local schools to teach cross-country skiing. While the Anchorage area is one of the world’s premier hubs for competitive Nordic skiing, the sport isn’t as present in the rest of the state.

According to its website, Skiku’s “goal is to get Alaska skiing.” Russell volunteered with the nonprofit for the first time last spring, where he went to Utqiagvik, Alaska, otherwise known as Barrow, the northernmost city in the United States.

“I actually grew up in Alaska from the age of 9 to 15. Last year was the first year I was able to go back in 18 years, since I moved,” said Russell, now 33. “Because my passion is Nordic skiing, I also wanted to find another volunteer opportunity to allow me to travel and go someplace really unique and super far off the grid. This opportunity presented itself to be what I was looking for.”

Russell’s second stint with Skiku will end this weekend. Then, in June, the second part of his summer travels will get underway when he heads to Australia where he will be the head cross-country ski coach for New South Wales Cross Country, a ski club similar to AVSC.

The opportunity came about through AVSC Nordic program director August Teague, who spent four years with the Australian national team before returning to his roots in Aspen. This will be Russell’s first time traveling to Australia. He’ll return to Aspen in the fall to continue working with AVSC.

acolbert@aspentimes.com

Mikaela Shiffrin returns home to Vail after record season on the ski slopes

AVON — Mikaela Shiffrin got back into town over the weekend and was already meeting with fans Sunday.

In what has become an annual celebration at The Westin Riverfront Resort & Spa in Avon, Shiffrin was welcomed back by the community in Eagle County where she lives, meeting with fans and answering questions from local children.

Lars Wible, a fourth-grader from Stone Creek Charter School, asked Shiffrin what her favorite element of skiing or ski racing is.

Shiffrin’s answer — that feeling of linking together good turns — resonated with Wible.

“Just skiing in general is such a great sport,” he said.

Shiffrin said it’s important for her to meet with fans when she returns back home from a successful season.

“I remember the few times that I got to see my idols, even if they just skied by me getting on the chairlift,” Shiffrin said on Sunday. “Bode Miller, getting on the chairlift, I freaked out, because he’s my biggest idol, and I never even got to speak to him, so having a chance to meet somebody that you look up to and look them in the eyes and get a picture with them and feel that connection, it was important for me, so I’m hoping that it’s also important for the younger kids the same way that I always felt. And if that’s enough to inspire them to keep shooting for the stars, keep reaching for their dreams, then that’s huge.”

‘BEING YOUR BEST’

Representatives from The Westin said they feel honored to have hosted welcome back celebrations for Shiffrin, who lives in Eagle-Vail, over the past few seasons.

“Every year the event grows,” said Gaye Steinke with The Westin. “We had to move it to the ballroom this year.”

More than 250 people were in attendance Sunday, with adults and children waiting in line to get a picture with Shiffrin.

“People look forward to it every year,” Steinke said. “She just embodies good work ethic, health and wellness and being your best.”

RECORD SEASON

Shiffrin’s season was one for the record books. She became the first ski racer to win 17 World Cup events in a single season and also became the first skier to earn more than $1 million in race winnings alone.

She said her success this season surprised even her.

“If you told me that this season was gonna go that well at the beginning, I would say you’re crazy,” she said.

Upon returning home, she’s been on a whirlwind media tour, appearing on “The Late Show with Jimmy Fallon,” “Good Morning America” and other popular national programs.

“I just want to push the limits of the sport,” she told Rob Marciano with “Good Morning America.”

Shiffrin said the media attention has been surprising to see in a non-Olympic year.

“It shows that there’s a lot of interest in ski racing and even more interest this year than I felt last year after the Olympics,” she said. “I’m really proud of that.”

jlaconte@vaildaily.com

Deer Valley wants to better manage crowds after first year of Ikon Pass

Deer Valley Resort is known for its well-groomed runs and high-end experience. But this season, that’s not what had many skiers buzzing at the end of a day on the slopes.

Parking lots overflowed and many skiers complained of longer-than-normal lift lines as visitation numbers peaked. Resort leaders say multiple factors contributed to the high numbers, but the resort’s inclusion on the new Ikon Pass from Deer Valley’s owner, Alterra Mountain Company, unmistakably played a role. Next year, the resort hopes to better regulate the crowds.

Coleen Reardon, director of marketing for Deer Valley, said the resort was up 12 percent in visitation compared to previous years, which is a significant jump. Still, she said, the resort only hit its cap of 8,500 skiers on the mountain on six days, and all of the days were over the holidays. That stat was on par with previous winters.

Although the resort did not hit its cap later in the season, Reardon said visitation remained high during periods that are generally slower for the resort. March, for example, was one of the resort’s busiest months during the 2018-19 season. Reardon said snowstorms and the timing of spring breaks around the country contributed to the high visitation.

She also said the numbers peaked when Big Cottonwood and Little Cottonwood canyons closed because of heavy snowfall or intense wind.

The near-constant flood of skiers was evident in the parking troubles the resort encountered, causing a dispute with City Hall earlier this month. The city allows the resort to use Deer Valley Drive for overflow parking from the Snow Park Lodge lots on 10 percent of the days the resort is open during a ski season. This year, the resort exceeded its permitted days, which amount to approximately 12 or 13 days, and has said it used the street for overflow parking 27 times.

After City Hall prohibited the resort from using Deer Valley Drive for parking, the resort briefly encouraged guests to park at the China Bridge garage near Main Street and use public transit to arrive at the resort and also directed skiers to park at Treasure Mountain Junior High on the weekends. Reardon said the change worked well, but the resort plans to work with the city before next winter to find a more efficient and long-term solution.

She said that could include more overflow parking and transit that goes straight to the resort. The resort also wants to have a better plan for snow removal, because Reardon said snow covered up approximately 100 of the resort’s parking spots.

As for the cap on the amount of skiers allowed on the mountain, Reardon said it can be difficult to determine an exact number when counting skiers at the resort. Typically, the resort combines anecdotal information from workers on the mountain, past data from visitation numbers and the quantity of day passes sold in order to count skiers.

This year, the calculation included the amount of Ikon Pass holders who were required to stop at the ticket office to get their passes scanned for the day. Ikon Pass holders have a limited amount of days at the resort. Deer Valley season pass holders are allowed to access the lifts without checking in.

Reardon said without RFID gates that scan every guest’s pass before they get on a ski lift, the exact number of skiers at the resort can get skewed. She said Deer Valley realized the importance of RFID gates, which use radio-frequency to scan ski passes, after seeing the consistently large crowds this season.

The resort plans to install RFID gates in the summer.

“We will be able to better control the numbers on the mountain,” Reardon said. “We don’t have a lot of data right now, but we will next year.”

The gates will also allow the resort to see what areas of the mountain have the most traffic and where the resort should focus its renovation projects.

Reardon said some guests were upset with the crowds, particularly those who have been skiing at Deer Valley for years and are used to short lift lines. But, she said, it is hard to place the blame for the packed mountain on one factor alone. Not only was Deer Valley on the Ikon Pass this year, the resort also had more than 300 inches of snow and the U.S. economy is doing well, she said.

“Being a part of the Ikon Pass, I’m not going to say it wasn’t busier. It sure was, but we felt like the mountain handled it well,” she said.

She said the pass was beneficial because it attracted new guests who had never visited the mountain before.

“We are thrilled about the new guests that are visiting us, they really love us,” she said. “It’s been fun to see the new folks experience Deer Valley and our product.”

She said being part of Alterra Mountain Company allows the resort to make bigger investments in its technology — such as the RFID gates and planned digital signage at the resort’s base — and future improvements to the resort’s infrastructure. She said the resort plans to update its day lodges to add more seating in the near future.

“Being family-owned we didn’t have the resources to really invest in expensive technology,” she said.