Big White gearing up for Winter Season
Big White Ski Resort will open November 26th for the winter ski season, as long as the government allows it.
Vice President Michael Ballingall told AM1150 News there will be a lot of changes to lift line and ticket operations.
“The seasons pass holders will be the only ones that will have guaranteed access to the lifts, everyone else is going to have to make a reservation and buy their ticket online before they come to the mountain because we want to know exactly how many people are on the mountain but we also want to know ho is one the mountain; and this way by you buying a ticket online we'll be able to trace everyone's movements and if there's anything that ever goes wrong we'll be able to know where people were at certain times of the day,” said Ballingall.
Tickets will be limited to a couple of thousand per day and guests staying on the mountain will take first priority.
Those tickets go on sale October 18th.
Keeping six metres apart on the mountain isn’t a huge concern for Ballingall. He said provincial guidelines will be in place at bars and the mountain offers four different parking lots and eight different lifts that will help with physical distancing.
“So when you get to the lift you're going to have a piece of equipment that is at least a meter and a half long. So you're going to be physically separated with your snowboard and your skis on. Masks will be mandatory in line and while entering and exiting the lift and this is for safety reasons for protocols of our team members helping you load or unload off the chair,” said Ballingall.
However, he added that the last thing they want to do is be the ‘mask police.’
“People coming up to Big White and skiers and snowboarders in general know that face coverings, balaclavas, when you pull your neck warmer up over your face, anything that’s protecting your mouth and your breath from exiting your area of safety.”
When it comes to safely delivering a winter season, Ballingall said ski and snowboard school are no different.
“What we're asking people to do is come to the ski school in the bubble that you’re familiar with and that you're comfortable with and then you will pick an instructor to help with lessons for that particular bubble. So mums and dad that would normally put their kids into the Kids Centre, that practice is no longer available,” said Ballingall, adding that parents will be required to attend lessons with their children.
In a seperate interview on AM1150's Early Edition, Ballingall said that night tubing, skiing and skating will be cancelled for the season due to a lack of staff.
Seasons passes are on sale now.