Crystal Mountain announces $700 hike in ski pass prices, $100M expansion project

Big changes are coming to Crystal Mountain. 

On Thursday, the resort announced that in the next five years, it plans to bring $100 million in investment to new infrastructure and service advancements. 

The project is scheduled to break ground this April. 

The news coincided with the announcement of a major capital investment in the busy ski area near Mount Rainier National Park by owner Alterra Mountain Company.

Resort officials said one of the resort improvements will start this summer with the redevelopment of the base area, known as the Mountain commons. It is scheduled to be completed by Fall 2023. 

The project had been in the works since spring of 2020 but was put on hold due to the pandemic. 

Shorthanded Stevens Pass ski resort struggles to meet demand

The winter skiing and snowboarding season on at Stevens Pass ski resort east of Everett, Washington, has gotten off to a rough start with the area opening only about half its terrain amid a staffing shortage.

Officials said the goal of the expansion plan is to increase capacity and ease the process of guest arrival by reducing the time it takes to park, buy a lift ticket and get on the mountain. 

"We need more space and infrastructure to support the rise in visitation stemming from the dramatic increase in the popularity of outdoor recreation in the Pacific Northwest. We are ready to make some big investments in our infrastructure and uphill capacity to keep pace with the growth in our community and improve guest satisfaction," said Frank DeBerry, President & COO at Crystal.

As for season passes and mountain access, the resort said the 22/23 season will be different. The pass will cost $1,699, with a $100 discount for those renewing from this season, a steep increase from the current season in which full-price season passes cost $999

The resort said the 22/23 season Ikon Pass will be limited to seven unrestricted days at Crystal Mountain and the Ikon Base Pass will continue to offer five Crystal days.  The Crystal Local Pass, now called the Crystal Roots Pass, will continue to be offered for those who choose to visit midweek.

For visitors, paid weekend parking will continue next season and will extend to non-carpooling pass holder, and the free weekend Enumclaw shuttle and parking reservations will continue. 

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The Associated Press contributed to this report.