This section is primarily Photographic, featuring large size
images with supporting text where necessary.
We are adding this copy here because it is commentary that
partially represents potentially the largest single disruptive
force to any ski season on record and as such needs to be
included in the chronological stack of Tremblant Geographic
topics for historical review.)
It’s October, 2020, and all dedicated Tremblant Winter Alpine
Snow Sports Fans are eagerly anticipating the upcoming
Ski/Snowboard season. We remain optimistic that despite
Covid-19, the Ski season is possible.
Obviously there is an element of public nervousness in any anticipations,
as the whole planet is enduring the Covid-19 International health pandemic
that both literally and figuratively is generating “Moving Targets” for all
planers across the entire spectrum of Human endeavour.
The experience of recent months shows that activity has had to be modified
or curtailed in many ways that have been unexpected and unpredictable.
From an 8 month observational standpoint since the beginning of last March,
we have seen first waves, dips, second waves, hot spots, special red zones,
breakouts and many other descriptive terms applied to the per-capita case
rates that have necessitated alterations to many of the plans made by
humans around the world.
Can future 2020/21 Skiing in Canada, in Quebec, at Tremblant, escape
the kinds of interruptions that seem to have been occurring so far?
We think yes, but under the very strict, serious, implementation and
conduct of the Covid-19 protocols that are currently called for, and
may be additionally necessary in future, by both the scientific and
The alarming part that everyone has seen in public behavioural examples
over the summer months though, is that there are some members of the
public who are not taking the preventative measures seriously. You can
walk out your front door and see people engaged in high risk activity,
you can survey social media, or turn on televised broadcast news and
see almost endless disregard for science-based Covid-19 preventative
measures that have caused significant increases in spread. Unfortunately
as it may seem, humans can then only blame themselves for the reactionary,
restrictive interventions in order to reduce those rates of spread.
One logical conclusion could then be argued to be that if everyone took
the implementation of Covid-19 Protocols to the maximized and optimized
degrees possible, many, many human activity plans could safely take place,
including Ski Seasons. In that sense, our collective ability to move forward
may be directly proportional to our collective ability to conform to sustained
safe practice that neutralizes and reduces spread.
Certainly, there are going to be aspects of the new season that under current
policy will probably not be similar to all previous history. The biggest potential
difference may be the consequence of Global/International Travel Restrictions
that prohibit “Non-Essential” travel between countries. In the most severe
forms of travel restrictions, we’ve even seen “Stay at home” orders when
authorities deem sufficient threat to public health. It is not yet clear whether
or not any of those restrictions would be in place at either future dates, or
between what regions or countries, but there is sufficient existing precedent
(example: repetitive monthly extensions of Border closings or crossing restrictions),
to suggest the possibilities we could be faced with are domestic only participations,
at least to begin with.
More specifically related to the start-up permissions for this season, of all the
Canadian East Coast Ski Resorts, we think Tremblant may be near the top of
the group in terms of being suited to make the Covid-19 adaptations necessary
to logistically support their regional Ski/Board community. There are loads of
high speed detachable quad’s for controlling lift-serviced outdoor social
distancing and the Gondola is perfect for “Family Bubble” groups, so if there
end up being less International guests, the consequent reduction in overall
density makes it seem doable? With a network of over 100 trails/82 Kilometres,
covering 750 big, big acres of wide open spaces, even during normal times,
there’s just so much square area you can often feel like you’re all by yourself,
so in a Covid-19 context, in our opinion, social distancing will never be an
issue on the trails at Tremblant.
No one has ever done this before. In virtually every form of customer/supplier
exchange relationship, it is apparent that it takes patience, understanding and
co-operation from all parties, from product and service providers to end users.
If “Skiing” has any inherent advantages, those may prove to be the vast ratio
of outdoor space to the number of participants, and the fact that Skiers are
already used to wearing facial masks, for only two examples. These types of
natural advantages may mean that Covid-19 accommodations are easier to
facilitate within Ski Area domains.
Ultimately, a safe, effective vaccine may prove to be the answer or key to
a long term solution for the recovery of the widest range of human endeavour,
however there is much work yet to be done on that front that could take months
according to the best science-based Covid-19 information sources available at
Referring largely to weather factors, we’ve written many times in our daily
conditions reports: “Them That Adapts The Quickest, Has The Most Fun”…
For different reasons, but just as critically important now, that may be directly
applicable to attempting a Ski Season in the middle of a pandemic. What’s next?
Time will tell, but for us, the annual fall preparations of filing edges, base
cleaning/waxing and checking binding release function starts now.