News that Vail Resorts would be buying Peak Resorts recently hit the ski world like a ton of bricks. For Vail, it is a disruptive strategic move that gives them influence unlike anything in the history of the sport. For Peak, it provides a great way to get out from under a mountain of corporate debt, and gives the Boyd family a nice way to cash out. For skiers, it means that some form of the Epic Pass may be in your future. For employees? Who knows. Although Vail is now selling passes with the asterisk-ridden benefit of the new Peak properties, it remains to be seen whether this will happen in time for the coming season. Those with Vail experience are saying that the implications may not be realized this season.
Pundits are spouting all sorts of reasoning behind the move, but the simple fact is that an overwhelming majority of east coast skiers will live closer to a Vail property than any other resort. Vail has said as much, and that’s the key factor driving the purchase.
What, when and if it all shakes out remains to be seen.
Vintage photo show the old Savio double chair at Mount Snow, which is soon to be part of the Vail collective.