The Definitive Guide to Ski Resort Reservations

Updated: Feb 13

The Avant Ski Team has been racking up ski days across the country and we've updated our guide with our findings. We've witnessed covid operating procedures enabling us to safely enjoy time outside this winter. The nuances of advanced reservations, state and local travel regulations and differing season pass restrictions remain hard to navigate. Good news, we have all of the latest in one place.

Where can you ski this season!?

**Don’t delay! As of early-February, many weekends have been fully booked at resorts across the country. If you're planning a trip this winter, we recommend checking the reservation status of the resort you plan to visit before making any plans.


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No matter where you are going, check the resort's operating policy directly (they're always changing) and try to book as far in advance as possible (at least a week). Remember, most reservations are cancelable or refundable should your personal or the resorts' circumstances change. While things have for the most part run smoothly, there have been a few temporary covid-related shut downs (e.g., Hunter Mountain) and some resorts have had to close briefly for weather related reasons.


To jump to a breakdown of reservation policies by resort, click here.**


Overall, we've found that our predictions from The Latest on Winter 2020 have held true. Resorts are operating at reduced capacity, reservations are often required, face coverings are required, indoor operations are closed or operating at reduced capacity and lessons are available but limited. Covid responses vary from state to state, but we are encouraged to see reservation systems running smoothly and resorts operating with stricter measures in place, even in states that have been hesitant to take restrictive actions.


--> Related: Ski Rental Delivery is Safe and Convenient

Overview of Multi-Resort Season Pass Reservation Policies


Epic Pass: All Destinations Will Require Advanced Reservations


All Vail-owned Epic Pass destinations will require advanced reservations to ski this season. Passholders can reserve up to 7 priority day passes (this number may vary based on type of pass) for any time during the season. Additionally, passholders can reserve up to 7 days for any given week at the start of that week. Week-of reservations are released daily at midnight for the following seven days. The system is rolling so that once a passholder uses a day (priority or weekly), the passholder can reserve another day. Epic Passholders can sign in and make reservations here. Note, partner resorts, including Telluride, Sun Valley and Snowbasin, operate independently and have separate policies.


For example, if you are planning to go to Vail over President's weekend and want to have some flexibility to go to Okemo in early January, you can book up to 7 days at Vail immediately and then book week of week for your days at Okemo. Once your Vail week arrives, you can book days there that week (assuming they are available) and free up your priority days to reserve your choice destination for spring skiing.


Pro tips: If planning a visit during peak ski weekends or holidays, use your priority days to make your reservations ASAP. Week-of reservations are released daily at midnight. Reservations are fluid, check Epic's site regularly to see if a spot opens on your desired day. New reservations open up as people cancel or mountains open new terrain.


Ikon Pass: Reservations Policies Vary Amongst Resorts but System is Easy to Use


Ikon does not have a universal policy. This is not surprising given that Alterra (parent company of Ikon) does not own all of the resorts on the pass. Policies vary amongst resorts from full reservations, to parking reservations as a gating factor, to no reservations at all. Fortunately, Ikon does have an easy-to-use central reservation system, which you can access here.


Mountain Collective: Resort Reservations are Not Generally Required


The Mountain Collective offers 2 or 3 days at 22 resorts and does not have a standard reservation policy. This is not surprising as each resort operates independently. Mountain Collective aggregated the links to the covid-operating procedures for each destination here. While most resorts do not require a reservation for Mountain Collective passholders, some encourage fulfilling days in advance to avoid the need to visit ticket windows.



What This Means for the Resort You Want to Visit


Below is a list of travel restrictions by state as well resort specific policies on reservations, day-tickets and parking reservations. When looking to visit another state, pay close attention to the state regulations of that state. (Click the region to jump to that section). Resorts in blue link to our resort guides. Be sure to check them out before you plan your trip!


California Colorado Maine Montana New Hampshire New Mexico New York Utah Vermont Wyoming/Tetons British Columbia

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California


State Regulations: California is requiring all out-of-state visitors to quarantine for 14 days upon arrival. California introduced a regional 'stay home' order on December 7 that has severely restricted travel between certain regions whose ICU bed capacity drops below 15%.


As of January 13th, the stay home order for the Greater Sacramento Region (Tahoe-area resorts) has been lifted. However, the order for the Southern California Region (Mammoth Mountain) is still in effect.


Ski resorts have been allowed to remain open, however, hotels and other lodging options have been closed. Regardless of the status of a region's stay at home order, residents have been encouraged not to travel between regions. It is extremely difficult for non-residents to visit a California ski resort. For more details on California's 'stay home' order, click here.


Heavenly, CA – Epic Pass

Reservations Required for Passholders: Yes (make a reservation here)

Advanced Lift Ticket Purchase (non-passholder): Required (buy tickets here)

Parking Restrictions: None

More Details >


Kirkwood, CA – Epic Pass

Reservations Required for Passholders: Yes (make a reservation here)

Advanced Lift Ticket Purchase (non-passholder): Required (buy tickets here)

Parking Restrictions: None

More Details >


Mammoth Mountain, CA – Ikon Pass & Mountain Collective

Reservations Required for Passholders: No

Advanced Lift Ticket Purchase (non-passholder): Required (buy tickets here)

Parking Restrictions: None

More Details >


Northstar, CA – Epic Pass

Reservations Required for Passholders: Yes (make a reservation here)

Advanced Lift Ticket Purchase (non-passholder): Required (b