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July 30th, 2014 ~ Vol. 84 No. 30
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Ski hill master plan could mean
higher ticket prices
Crowsnest Pass Herald Front Page
stock photo
Pass Powderkeg Ski Hill
EZRA BLACK
Pass Herald Reporter
The Pass Powder Keg Ski Society has an ambitious plan to upgrade the ski resort in Blairmore but some of the costs will be transferred to the people who use the community’s hill.
Phase 1 of the plan will cost about $3,575 million and Ski Society secretary Henry Bruns says ticket prices would eventually need to be increased 25 to 30 per cent.
“We feel we have to bring up the prices to make the finances more tolerable,” said Bruns, adding that prices would still be less than two-thirds the ticket prices at Castle Mountain and Fernie.
On July 22, representatives from the Pass Powder Keg Ski Society presented the Master Plan Implementation Proposal and asked council to allocate capital funds from the 2016 budget for the implementation of the plan’s first phase and $30,000 in seed money to develop a fundraising campaign and marketing plan.
Ski hill consultants Brent Harley and his associates, who authored the development proposal, said the T-bars and poor access to parking are limiting business at the Pass Powder Keg.
continued below...


The master plan encompasses three independent stages to expand existing runs and allow for multi-season utilization. Phase 1 of the plan calls for a quad chairlift with a mid a mid-mountain disembarkation option, a new parking lot, the replacement of the lower T-bar with a conveyor carpet and improvements to the ticket shop, ski school lighting and other facilities.
The chair lift could be used to transport bicycles in the offseason and the plan calls for further development of area mountain biking trails, which will increase revenue sources, said Bruns.
Bruns says the Pass Powder Keg’s revenues would increase by about 60 per cent within three years of the plan’s implementation and elaborated on other benefits that would come with improving the facility.
“The fact that we’d have an improved quality ski hill in the community should help retain some residents and some businesses in the Pass. Which would result in more tax revenues,” he said.
Council will be allocating money from the 2016 capital budget to pay for the improvements on condition the ski society raises a minimum of $500,000 from corporate and individual donations.
The Pass Powder Keg has been operating since the 1930s. Visits to the hill increased an average of 20 per cent a year between 2004 and 2012.
The 20-year comprehensive master has been in the development stage for the last five years.
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July 30th ~ Vol. 84 No. 30
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