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SUMMIT COUNTY -- Two massive snow storms in less than a week, and skiers and snowboarders are itching to get on the slopes.
This is Jarrett Killpack's first season purchasing a season pass, and he chose The Canyons. He couldn't wait for opening day, which was scheduled for November 26th. However, when he checked the Canyons' Facebook page this week, he found a press release from the resort, followed by a flurry of angry posts from season pass holders. Opening day is pushed back two weeks.
"It said ‘we are pleased to announce The Canyons will be opening December 10th,'" Killpack said. "Really it should be ‘we're sorry but we're not opening till the 10th.'" [CLICK HERE to read the letter from The Canyons to season pass holders]
Killpack thought about getting a refund and buying a pass somewhere else, but it's long past the deadline for early bird specials. A new pass at a different resort would end up costing him hundreds of additional dollars.
"That's a huge chunk of the season that they've kind of messed up for the season pass holders, and it's really not fair," Killpack said.
Turns out, The Canyons isn't closed for lack of snow, which is the usual cause of resort opening delays, but for construction. The resort is undergoing a major transformation, including heated chair lifts, a "snow beach", new restaurants, and expanded runs.
"We embarked this summer on one of the largest recreation projects of a resort in North America," said Mike Goar, Managing Director for The Canyons Resort.
Goar says the project has been going since mid-June and he admits, they are a little behind schedule. They needed dozens of construction permits and just based on the sheer volume, they are about fourteen days delayed.
"It's a bit of a missed opportunity with all the new snow and we feel worse than anybody," Goar said. "We want the place to be open, and open for skiing and our guests here having a great time."
This afternoon, Goar announced via the The Canyons Facebook page the resort is giving two complimentary day passes to all season pass holders to soften the blow. They can give the passes to anyone they wish. Goar hopes patrons will be patient and come back for what he says will be one of the best resorts in the world, when it's complete.
"The wait is well worth it for all we're doing, and we're going to take care of them," Goar said.