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Kirkwood Purchased By Vail Resorts

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Kirkwood purchased by Vail Resorts

Will Vail Resorts make Kirkwood out of reach?

I’m sure most of you by now are probably aware that Kirkwood Mountain Resort has been acquired by Vail Resorts in a sale worth approximately USD$18 million. However, just in case you haven’t, or would like our take on the story, here are a few more details.

According to Kirkwood’s own facebook page, Coop, who manages their social media has expressed his excitement to the move whilst it has sparked strong debate amongst the community.

As we commented there, people were angry when they tried to introduce the telephone, television and the internet as well and look how those all turned out. We think this is a great move for both companies and applaud them for making a gigantic step forward.

You would think that if your season pass just doubled your accessible terrain, you would be happy, right? Well, according to some of the Kirkwood die-hards, this is not the case. Concern has been raised about “selling out”, “too many people”, “over developing” and of course a myriad of other things too many to mention in a simple post.

Although we understand that it is in human nature to resist change (I think I remember some crap about this written by Maslow or someone), I’m sure that once the merger is complete, that skiers and snowboarders will be cheering everywhere. Better access, better facilities, a decent feed, faster lifts and more reliable lifts are just some of the positives that we see coming out of this.

On the negative side for Kirkwood, yes, it does mean progress. What’s that old saying, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”? Well, many of Kirkwood’s management team would argue that if it ain’t broke now, it sure is leaning over the edge.

This sale certainly comes as no surprise to those of us with our heads out of the sand as the resort has been on the market for quite some time now. Although many will suggest that it is the poor season snowfall that pushed the deal through, this is simply not the case at all.

At a cool USD$18 million, the question remains, is it a good acquisition for Vail resorts? Combining the three biggest resorts in the Lake Tahoe area, being Heavenly, Northstar (after their acquisition only a year or so ago) and now Kirkwood seems like a logical step into market domination. You can rest assured though that Vail resorts are going to do their absolute best to make this merger rock, just as they have with their stable of resorts in Colorado.

I remember, they said the same thing when Arapahoe Basin was purchased in Colorado as well. All it has done for them is expand the terrain and give them extra cash to develop the mountain.

Kirkwood Trail Map - Now part of Vail Resorts

Can Vail Resorts make Kirkwood even better?

If you would like to check out the official media release for the acquisition, you can find that by clicking here. You can also jump onto Kirkwood’s facebook page to interact directly with resort representatives who have been superb in responding to questions and concerns.

We’d also love to hear your thoughts on this matter. Feel free to jump into the comments section below and tell us why you think we are full of crap, or if you are also excited about the move.

From us though, we are excited about Vail resorts purchasing Kirkwood Mountain Resort and are excited to see what the future holds.

Enjoyed this? Here’s some other stuff we think you’ll find is awesome too!

Pete Kvist
Head Honcho of SRTV


Pete Kvist began skiing in Australia over 20 years ago and has been addicted to skiing and all things snow ever since. He has worked several seasons on the mountain as a lift operator and has also spent some time in ski resort media departments (so yes, he knows the tricks of the trade).

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