by Roger Lohr –
Ragged Mountain’s “Mission Affordable” is a program model which breaks the cost barrier for people interested in learning to ski or snowboard. Does free sound affordable enough?
The strategy at Ragged Mountain Resort to get more people to try skiing and encourage them to stay with the sport is targeted to first timers, who are invited to learn to ski in a three lesson FREE learn-to-ski program. On-line registration is necessary to participate, and free equipment is offered to use in the lessons. There are no blackout periods (available all season long) and the lessons can be taken on three consecutive days or any days during the winter, on different weekends, holidays, or in any way that fits the participant.
There are 2-hour group classes organized between 9 AM and 1 PM, whereby the skiers move from station to station at a limited location on the mountain. Skills are learned progressively moving from one station to the next as the participant develops the skills and confidence. If the participant wants to ski for the rest of the day using the lower mountain lift (limited area) and use the rental equipment, it costs only $20.
When the program participant “graduates” and has taken the three lessons, he or she is offered a regular season pass for only $69 for the rest of this year. For next season (2017-18) the “sophomore” will be offered a discounted season pass. The equipment for the rental program was provided by product supplier Rossignol, and program graduates are also offered a new equipment package (Rossignol skis or snowboard, boots, bindings, poles) at $199 for kids or $299 for adults.
To summarize the offer for adults: three free lessons, a $69 season pass, and $299 for a new equipment package for a total of $368 for your own equipment and a SEASON of skiing or snowboarding!
Ragged Mountain named the program after Bebe Wood to honor her – she’s been an enduring and endearing member of the Ragged Mountain family. The resort’s general manager Ryan Schramm commented, “I’m so happy to tell folks that there isn’t a catch – it really is free. We wanted to introduce people to the sport and remove the hurdles, which tend to be the cost of professional instruction and access to good equipment. Our goal is to turn program participants into real skiers and riders for a lifetime.”
Ragged Mountain Resort is located in Danbury, NH on 2,100 acres in the Lake’s Region and it has increased capacity for snowmaking by five times, invested in hundreds of new high efficiency snow guns, added a high speed quad chairlift and added slope-side and nearby lodging options.