Ski Rex Media Is Going With Indy Pass This Season - Ski Rex Says...

There have been a few times that we've talked about season pass choices here on Ski Rex Media. Actually, there was a time that wrestling with pass choices was a Live Stream & #VirtualApres Party topic. Well, this isn't about wrestling with the choice. No, this is about the choice having been made.

Now, just as a quick refresher as to what I think is the deciding factor should be when picking which pass to buy, get the pass that you can abuse the most for the money you paid. If a person buys a mega pass but only has no mountains closer than a day's drive, they can't really abuse that as well as a person who has 10 mountains on the local bus route. Always get the one that you can use the most. I think we can all agree on that. 

For me, whether it be Epic, Ikon, or Indy, I can abuse the heck out of any of the three of them. I have several mountains from each pass within an hour or less of where I am writing this right now. To put an even finer point on it, notice that I did not include the Mountain Collective pass. There just aren't enough mountains nearby for me to make use of that pass. If memory serves, there are only two mountains in the whole of New England on that one. But, for the other three, there is about a ton within an easy driving distance.

So, why choose the Indy Pass out of the three? It's because I will be able to really abuse that one for the price. In fact, let's start there. 

The Indy Pass Starts at about 200 bucks for two days at any of the 50+ mountains that are on the pass. That number sits well with the Ski Rex Media budget. While all of the mega passes can work out to be great deals when purchased early and even into the beginning of the season, $200 is about the cheapest one available. As a still fairly new entity in the skiing and snowboarding media world, I do need to keep costs down and this seems to be the way to go.

Indy Pass Eastern Mountain Travel Times From The HQ
So, the financial aspect is pretty simple. It's cheap and I have plenty of mountains nearby. In fact, take a look at the picture to the left. I will ask you to excuse my penmanship, but that's the approximate travel time to each of the participating mountains in the east. I can totally get my money's worth using the Indy Pass. However, there is an aspect other than the cost that I have been considering. 

I'm going to need a pass that will allow for balancing fun skiing and work skiing. I don't know how much skiing I will actually be doing for fun versus how much I will be doing for Ski Rex Media. Sure, some of those days will obviously cross-over, but not all of them. So, I figure that I shouldn't be spending a lot of money on fun skiing anyway, since I don't know how often I will do it. I may end up doing more stories, filming, photos, or other bits & projects for Ski Rex Media than just hanging out with my friends. It's better to only pay $200 now, then if I feel that I can do more, then I can always pick a different or second pass for the next season.

 So, for now, with several mountains three hours or less away, with Suicide Six being less than a half an hour way, I think I can abuse this pass for fun skiing and for work skiing. Again, not that I couldn't with Epic or Ikon. Believe me, I could run up some days on those, too. Especially with Mount Snow, my original home mountain, on the Epic Pass and Killington and Stratton, both mountains that I have spent a lot of time at and have a lot of good memories from, on the Ikon Pass. I would be at those places all the time. But, I can't spend all of my time in those places. I'll need to get around a little for Ski Rex Media projects and bits. I could get around on any of the three passes, as I said, but I also have a budget to think about. But, there is another consideration, now that I think about it. Indy Pass mountains are places that aren't nearly as popular.

Now, I don't mean that as a diss against any of the mountains that are part of the Indy Pass network. Once one starts looking into a lot of those mountains, one finds that they have a great local following and although they may be smaller and a bit more out of the way, they still have some attractive features, one of which being fewer crowds with just as much snow. In any case, these are places that I haven't been before and, in some cases, have never heard of. 

With that said, this pass is almost an excuse to get in a little adventure close to home, not that I really need an excuse. But, it's always fun to go somewhere different, to explore off the beaten path. I mean, we all know what Robert Frost said about the road less traveled, and he wasn't wrong. There have been many times in my travels and adventures that I have taken the way that seems a bit less taken or a bit more lonely, or unexplored. I don't know, but I think going to these Indy Pass mountains, even locally here in VT, NH, MA, ME, and CT could make for some road-less-traveled adventures and I feel, in some ways, that will make all the difference.

In the end, I think the Indy Pass will work out for Ski Rex Media for the 2020/2021 season, COVID-19 restrictions notwithstanding. I can make it work having so many mountains within a comfortable driving distance for just a day out, as well as sticking to a budget and the chance at some adventures that would be much different than what I would have with the other passes. Heck, it's going to fun knowing that I am going to have a pass that's different than almost everyone else. Yep, this is the one I am going to go with. Don't fret too much, though. I'll still be at other mountains and I'll see you all out there, I am sure. Also, if you're looking for a little bit of a different skiing or snowboarding day, head out to one of the participating mountains. You might see me there for sure, especially in New England.

Hmmm...An Afterthought

Now that I think about it, and this goes a little against the advice that I have been giving people about the coming season, I think there is a little more room for adventure here that I realized. You see, the advice that I have been giving folks is to plan for local excursions only with all of the uncertainties of a COVID-19 ski season. It might be hard to book hotels, flights, and otherwise during these times. Though it may be hard, it won't be impossible and I may have to run with this thought.

Scroll back up a bit to the picture with all of the travel times written on it. You're looking for two mountains in particular. Have a look at Cataloochee Ski Area in North Carolina and Ober Gatlinburg in Tennesee. Both of those mountains are about 15 hours away, give or take, from the HQ. Could the Indy Pass be giving me an excuse to take a long road trip adventure?

You see, we all know that this coming season could be hard to plan out-of-state, long-travel ski trips. As I said, I've been advising folks to plan closer to home those year and I have been doing the same. But, while I have been planning trips locally, I have had a friend that crossed the country by car during the time of COVID-19. It's not impossible. It might just take a little more planning.

So, keep an eye on Ski Rex Media, because this coming winter might see a trip down south for a little skiing adventure. Just a whole day to drive down, a day at each hill, and then a day or two driving back depending on how tired I end up being. It could happen, it could be interesting, and it could be fun. I'll just need to pack latex gloves and tons of disinfecting wipes for the gas pumps and the hotel rooms.

This really is just an afterthought...but then could also happen. I do love a good road trip.

Photo: At the slopes of Ober Gatlinburg, TN - Credit: Bryant Thomas / CC BY


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