Questions may swirl about the coming winter season, but the Fernie Alpine Resort and its sister resorts under Resorts of the Canadian Rockies (RCR) plan to be open come winter – with the required safety protocols, of course.
“At this point, our intentions are to be fully open and fully operational this winter,” said senior vice president of RCR, Matt Mosteller, in an interview with The Free Press.
When asked about the possibility of the Fernie Alpine Resort being opened at lower capacity either due to workforce issues or due to pandemic protocols, Mosteller didn’t give anything away.
“There’s a lot of conversations for sure happening.
“We can only go on what we know (but) we’re looking forward to a winter where mother nature will provide us with lots of wonderful snow.”
Mosteller said that the industry as a whole was one that was resilient by its very nature, and adaptive to what was thrown at it.
“Our day to day operation at Fernie Alpine Resort involves mother nature and what mother nature may deliver us every day – It’s always changing.”
Mosteller said that the summer season under the pall of the pandemic had allowed the resort, and the industry overall to learn ways to best overcome the challenges of 2020 and provide a safe and enjoyable experience for visitors.
“Operating this summer has given us the opportunity to review the best in protocols for what we call first safe operations, hygiene care, and understanding what that takes to deliver that safe experience each and every day.”
When asked about workforce concerns in the Elk Valley, Mosteller said it was “a little bit early” to be making plans in regard to what borders will be open, and what travellers will be permitted to enter Canada.
“Right now we’re excited that we have jobs available for all Canadians, all who want to work this winter,” he said.
“We will have jobs obviously open, and we’re actively looking at the scenarios, and what those scenarios will require as far as team members go.”
Demand for winter resorts won’t be an issue though, said Mosteller, who said that there was optimism that the winter sports sector would enjoy the same rush in interest as the biking industry did over summer.
“We’re seeing early indicators that alpine skiing and snowboarding will be in the same boat, and have a powerful surge in interest this winter as well.”