ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska’s biggest ski resort is set to operate this season with a new operations plan that includes health precautions like mandatory face coverings.
Alyeska Resort in Girdwood cut the last ski season short because of the COVID-19 pandemic, Alaska Public Media reported Friday.
“No mask, no service here at Alyeska Resort,” Marketing Director Ben Napolitano said. “That includes all public spaces, that includes lift lines, and that includes being inside the aerial tramway as well.”
Skiers will be allowed to temporarily remove masks only while moving down the slopes, Napolitano said.
Skiers will no longer be allowed to get close to strangers on chairlifts or while using the resort’s tram system. Lines to board the lifts and tram will be configured to encourage social distancing.
“Inside the tram we’ll have a reduced capacity per tram car, as well as sanitizing between rides,” Napolitano said. “And for the quad chairlifts, we will be loading them as twos, unless the group is a family and have arrived together.”
Reservations will be required for equipment rentals and the gear will be sanitized daily.
Alyeska’s day lodge will be closed this winter and the resort plans to limit cash transactions.
The resort’s opening day will depend upon snow conditions.
For most people, the coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some — especially older adults and people with existing health problems — it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia, and death.
The number of infections is thought to be far higher because many people have not been tested, and studies suggest people can be infected with the virus without feeling sick.