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Hotham / DP brickbats and bouquets

Discussion in 'Hotham & Dinner Plain' started by Ziggy, Aug 13, 2015.

  1. Pink

    Pink One of Us

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    Falls, Buller and Perisher have said different. The resorts open Queens Birthday when there's no crowds and usually no snow for a month or so.
     
  2. Hully

    Hully One of Us

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    No or little snow = much reduced Lift Company running cost. For example Falls will be running most likely 14 lifts first week in October for what is most likely to be the same number of people they were running 3 lifts for in June.
     
  3. Seth

    Seth Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    It's a business decision. Why is it so hard to grasp?

    Falls and Hotham never both extend. Same owners.
     
  4. currawong

    currawong Old but not so Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    interesting that merlin has extending falls but not hotham. could just be percption that school holidays market are more likely to chose falls. if there was less snow then falls southerly aspect slopes with higher bottom stations could be a factor, but not really relevant this year. any other ideas?
     
  5. Hully

    Hully One of Us

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    I think that it is more likely that Falls has first season General Manager and Marketing Manager, plus lost last remaining experienced senior manager earlier in the year.
     
  6. currawong

    currawong Old but not so Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    :)

    here's to enthusiastic new managers.
    I just hope she has been impressed by the maze and might give it some priority in future
     
  7. Hully

    Hully One of Us

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    Might be rethinking enthusiasm when next couple of weekly financial reports land on her desk.
    What's your wishlist for the maze?
     
  8. currawong

    currawong Old but not so Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    start with summer grooming

    In days of old when there was enough snow, there was some grooming on inter & the maze every day, but different runs each day. That meant you could always find something smooth, some proto-bumps, moderate bumps and nastier bumps. I applaud them grooming in the maze this year but i understand that it was often the same runs each day

    and in pie-in-the-sky land, replace gully with a detachable lift that finishes higher than summit bottom. we love inter but a modern alternative would be nice
     
  9. FatBoyDave

    FatBoyDave One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    Bit of a chicken and egg thing.
    If you build it they will come.... maybe?

    I guess that's the problem being "The skiers mountain." Punters being too fussy about snow conditions to put up with spring snow.
     
  10. FatBoyDave

    FatBoyDave One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    Late season shoulder pricing is catering predominantly to young families based on what I see in September. Lots of families with young kids (under 3yo) walking around.
    Due to Hotham village layout, Falls and Buller have better options for non skiing getting around and snow play.
     
  11. Seth

    Seth Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    They don't though. That's why they are closing.
     
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  12. FatBoyDave

    FatBoyDave One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    Dislike.
     
  13. currawong

    currawong Old but not so Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    don't shoot the messenger
     
  14. FatBoyDave

    FatBoyDave One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    :whistle:
     
  15. FatBoyDave

    FatBoyDave One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    I get it but it's bloody frustrating...
    One of my pet hates is when they close half the eateries up there on the first Monday in September. If you book in September you're made to feel like a second class punter.
     
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  16. Hully

    Hully One of Us

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    The "skiers" will be there, it's the ski holidayers that won't be and they're the ones that spend money. The "skiers" haven't paid for a lift pass since final Hero Pass payment end of April, have their own equipment, are club lodge members, own an apartment or live off mountain = no incremental lift company revenue.
    The hardcore "skiers" will put on their skins and not be too fussed, will enjoy the lack of crowds.
     
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  17. Pink

    Pink One of Us

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    they've spent a ton of money and effort on snowmaking to make the July school holidays reliable for families, extending the start of the season, and done a great job of it. The Summit/Roadrunner snowmaking was awesome early on this season. I'm happy to book July school holidays in advance now, when previously I wouldn't have dreamed of it. Time to put some effort into increasing visitor numbers in Spring. It's a ripper time for families to go to the mountains.
     
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  18. jungfrau

    jungfrau One of Us

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    Parking is too expensive in general but should really be reduced in shoulder season to reflect the reduced services.
    Then more people may come in spring
    Ie $25 instead of $50
     
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  19. currawong

    currawong Old but not so Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    Which services provided by resort management are reduced in shoulder season?
    Resort mgt has to be self funding - from "rates" and entry fees. How would you fund the discount you propose?
     
  20. jungfrau

    jungfrau One of Us

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    Most would be reduced I would think.. buses, rubbish, ski patrol etc
    My point was more people would come up and pay this resort entry if it were reduced. They can still run less buses etc but potentially get more income. Imo
     
  21. currawong

    currawong Old but not so Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    For services related to visitor numbers they would already be betting less resort entry income to fund these.
    The per visitor rubbish would be about the same. Buses also related to visitor numbers and visitors would be pissed off if frequency fell much. I would have thought there was a relationship betweeen open terrain and number of patrollers needed, and AIUI there are typically more accidents in good visibility and on icy slopes than in more wintery conditions.
    There may well be efficiencies in resort mgt but probably not a lot of opportunities to reduce costs specifically in spring
     
  22. Ziggy

    Ziggy A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    All depends on the ratio of fixed to variable costs.
    You'd need a peek at the books to be able to say.
     
  23. Pink

    Pink One of Us

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    Close half the lifts, if need be, to reduce costs. Just run Summit, Village and Heavenly. And if there are going to be so few visitors then move to Summer parking arrangements (ie. allow overnight parking in the village) then they can stop the village bus service.
     
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  24. Seth

    Seth Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    only three lifts open = people can't be bothered.

    they are not under any obligation to stay open. you seem to think they automatically should just because there is snow on the ground.
     
  25. hongomania

    hongomania One of Us Ski Pass: 30 Day

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    They cant just stop bus services unfortunately - will require contract renegotiations with the service provider.
     
  26. currawong

    currawong Old but not so Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

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    also there is sfa parking in corale so you still need buses to get people from davenport end of village

    i would have thought big d was a critical lift if they were open
     
  27. FlatLander

    FlatLander Addicted

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    No its the other way around, the customers dont turn up so they (customers) are not putting any value on the product available. Visitors dont arrive in any numbers after this weekend. What is the point in running 10 lifts for a couple of hundred people, and most of those will be staff sticking around hoping for another couple of shifts to pay for their bar tab at Swindlers :)

    Buller often extends even if only burke st is running because its so close to Melbs. Hotham and Falls are ghost towns for the remainder of the season. And probably price has a lot to do with it, pricing should be marked down substantially to try and lure people and families up. Eg $50 lift tickets, $50 beds, Resort entry is difficult because guests still expect services, although my view is after this weekend free resort entry with conditions eg only 1 bus, (expect to walk/wait), Ski Patrol is hard as there still needs to be a minimum number to open areas and for safety, maybe expect later start times eg lifts start at 10 and close at 4, this may assist in reducing Patrol requirements and Ski lift run costs. Traditionally Zirks used to close at end of August as there was simple no one around.

    Complain about it as much as you like but reality is its a numbers game as Currawong has said, bottom line is visitors dont turn up in any real numbers.
     
  28. Pink

    Pink One of Us

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    Well, it is public land, so yes, I do think so if there's some way of making it financially viable for all stakeholders. A lot of local businesses and employees would appreciate the extra money. Though I suspect it maybe the case that the MHRMB couldn't be bothered.
     
  29. Pink

    Pink One of Us

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    Wouldn't the bus contract be to 1/10? Extending lift operations to 8/10 this season surely wouldn't require bus contract renegotiations if the bus services weren't being extended.
     
  30. Seth

    Seth Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    LOL

    Lifts are not public assets. Grooming/maintaining trails is not a public service.

    If as a local business or employee you are relying on that extra week then you are well farked and I'd suggest packing up and finding something else to do because you could have 5m of snow on the ground and it wouldn't make much difference to visitor numbers.

    You also seem to not understand the distinction between Lift Co and RMB.

    If it was financially viable they would do it. It isn't so they don't. For the millionth time.
     
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  31. Pink

    Pink One of Us

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    There's going to be sfa visitors, remember, so Corral, Loch if Heavenly and Summit are running, and beside the GAR should be plenty of parking space.

    Only need one beginners lift running.
     
  32. Seth

    Seth Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Yeah, that'll pack them in from near and far. :rolleyes:
     
  33. cookieman

    cookieman One of Us

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    Is all this discussion only about extending the season by 1 week?
    Unfortunately guests drop of significantly by second half of September no matter how much snow there is.
    Its the best time for beginners and families to go ,but economically it just doesn't work out to keep the infrastructure going past the normal closing date.
    Back-country will be great this October.
     
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  34. Seth

    Seth Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    will be sublime.
     
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  35. Pink

    Pink One of Us

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    Tetchy! Someone's ready to pack up and go home.

    I believe the RMB is a state/public body with a charter to manage Hotham as a year round resort, while the Lift Co. owns the rights to run lifts on the public land. Am I missing something?
     
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  36. FlatLander

    FlatLander Addicted

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    Effectively yes, RMB's are there to manage a state asset (Mt Hotham Alpine Resort), provide council type services for guests, manage leases, eg Lodges, etc, the major lease holder is MHSC although am not sure if they only lease the areas immediately under the lift lines, or the entire ski field (I think its the latter). I think the year round aspect was added to the RMB act after the 2020 strategy. I am sure you will find that within the MHSC ski area lease there is no conditions that stipulate operational requirements.

    The MHSC (and mothership) is a privately owned company operating a lucrative business, I doubt you will find community services as part of their charter.
     
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  37. dossa5

    dossa5 One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    so much excitement this morning driving about 5ks on bare road with mandatory chains fitted. wtf
    snow still good though
     
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  38. Gregah

    Gregah One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    Dude, you seem to believe that Hotham could host Elvis after closing weekend and still no one would come and that's ok. No need to crack the shits at some of us who believe otherwise.
     
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  39. Hully

    Hully One of Us

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    I think that the Lift Companies are required to operate for the gazetted ski season (this year finishes Oct 1) and maybe require RMB permission before or after this date.
    Interestingly, I assume that the RMBs would need to get departmental approval to charge winter Resort Entry beyond the gazetted season.
    I won't be surprised to see MHSC extend their season, all of the above will be academic and we'll see how many turn up.... and more importantly contribute incremental revenue for the Lift Co.
     
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  40. Hully

    Hully One of Us

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    Falls Creek today were fitting chains at Howman's Gap because there was snow on the road past the Woodsmoke apartments....over 5kms up the road and beyond the majority of the carparks!!!
     
  41. rowdyflat

    rowdyflat One of Us

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    Dumb as Falls Creek= I laughed when I saw the sign and the bare road.
     
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  42. Hully

    Hully One of Us

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    The risk is that there is going to be a 'boy who cried wolf' response..... when chains are actually needed people will ignore the signs, keep driving and slide off the road.
    The ridiculous chain requirements this season have been a big talking point amongst locals.
     
  43. FlatLander

    FlatLander Addicted

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    I am not sure they have to Hully. And a number of years ago Hotham effectively shortened their season by a week. Remember the uproar. Although looks like that may have changes as on website states winter season is to 1st Oct
     
  44. Ziggy

    Ziggy A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    Looking at the maps it appears that Hotham and Falls are unincorporated areas. Those areas go beyond the built/lifted areas; at Falls Ck eg. by quite a way. That means management and other relevant agencies have the broad role of a council in providing services to residents and visitors, but it's a role that's unusual in Vic and I guess negotiated with the State.
     
  45. Ziggy

    Ziggy A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    It's possible that it's seen at Buller and Falls as a marketing investment, not a bottom-line income target.

    The resorts have benefited from a lot of free publicity this season and visitation is up. Those resorts may be looking to increase the size of the market, among families.
     
  46. Cuppa

    Cuppa A Local

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    Strong rumours in the pub that Hotham will extend.
     
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  47. Seth

    Seth Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Must have run the numbers.
     
  48. Cuppa

    Cuppa A Local

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    Confirmed this morning that Hotham will extend to the 8th.
     
  49. Seth

    Seth Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Taking the bet that people will come along.

    Is that still school holidays here in Victoria?
     
  50. Cuppa

    Cuppa A Local

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    Yeah it's school holidays.