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8/21/2003

Ski pass war begins

The Associated Press

VAIL — Vail Resorts launched the first salvo in a battle for Front Range skiers, announcing the price of its five-mountain season pass, then cutting it $10 to match Intrawest’s Super Pass.

Vail said Tuesday morning it would charge $329 for its Colorado Pass but quickly down-shifted to $319 to meet the price of Intrawest’s double-mountain pass for Copper Mountain and Winter Park.

The pricing flurry is indicative of the pending showdown between the publicly held ski giants for a share of the stagnant skier market. The resorts are competing for visits from about 500,000 Front Range skiers.

Last season, Vail sold 121,000 passes. An average pass-holder skis nine days per season, the resort said.

Its Colorado Pass is good at Breckenridge, Arapahoe Basin, Keystone, Vail and Beaver Creek and will cost $10 more than last year. The Buddy Pass, good at Breckenridge, Arapahoe Basin and Keystone, will remain $299.

For Vail pass information, visit www.snow.com or call 303-504-5870. The passes go on sale Aug. 29.

For Intrawest pass information, visit www.passwagon.com or call 800-977-SNOW.