Reviewing the News w/ Cody Townsend (Dec 2021) (Ep.197)

On the Blister Podcast, Cody and Jonathan discuss the current situation of under-staffed & overcrowded ski areas; national parks and Native American tribes; the looming shortage of lithium batteries for electric vehicles; whether or not to ski the backcountry with your dog; what we’re watching; and more.
Cody Townsend descending Mt. St. Elias (photo by Bjarne Salen)

Cody and I discuss the current situation of under-staffed & overcrowded ski areas; national parks and Native American tribes; the looming shortage of lithium batteries for electric vehicles; whether or not to ski the backcountry with your dog; what we’re watching; and more.

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5 comments on “Reviewing the News w/ Cody Townsend (Dec 2021) (Ep.197)”

  1. Any chance the worker shortage has something not do with not being able to bring in as many overseas workers due to covid? Also my friend who is a patroller at snowbird said the Wasatch resorts not being fully open has to do with avalanche risk / safety and high winds they have had and nothing to do with staff shortages.

    • That’s definitely a huge part of it in Canada, there’s an exchange program in place that means a huge portion of the resort staff are usually Australian, that hasn’t happened during covid so there’s been a big staff shortage. That said, all terrain is open here and I haven’t noticed any other issues with hill operations. Things are still running pretty smoothly

  2. I suspect the cheap mega-passes aren’t impacting diversity issues because season passes aren’t how people get into the sport. I don’t know anyone who has bought a pass their first season as a skier. I skied on day tickets only for my first seven years. Skiing can be cheap if you get started on shoddy thrift store gear, until you need AWD and snow tires to reach the ticket window with $100 or more ready to throw down. Many areas offer “beginner” tickets with access to only a few lifts. I’d bet those pricing structures play a much bigger role for new participants getting started and considering whether they want to commit to being a passholder the next year. They did for me anyway. That, and transportation to the mountain.

    • Local hills in the midwest probably have a bigger chance of bringing diversity into the sport than the mega hills.

      Cheap tickets and proximity to relatively diverse cities like Minneapolis, Chicago, Detroit, Milwaukee where people are already familiar with the cold. Pull in more school groups, offer affordable youth learn-to-ski programs and bus access from the city…

      Places like Denver or SLC may have the better mountain proximity, but they aren’t very diverse, especially in the middle-class and above.

  3. Have y’all done a podcast on how Vail’s ownership of CBMR has affected Crested Butte and the resort? Is there a positive?
    Even if that move predates Blister’s move to CB, it seems like it would be a really good Blister Pod Episode.

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