Baldy Mountain Resort near Oliver, B.C., ends season amid coronavirus pandemic

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Baldy Mountain Resort, near Oliver, B.C., has announced Sunday will be the last day of its season.

The small South Okanagan ski hill is the last in the Okanagan to close.

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It said it is ending its season due to the coronavirus pandemic, because it started seeing people traveling from out of town to visit the ski hill.

“We stayed open for our community,” said Caroline Sherrer, Baldy Mountain’s operations manager.

“We started noticing a lot of folks from outside of our local region and decided that wasn’t really fulfilling what we were trying to accomplish here.”

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Sherrer pointed out the skill hill has also made changes to comply with coronavirus restrictions, including closing its bar and restaurant.

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“Everybody seems to be very respectful of the social distancing, it’s not really an issue of that. I feel like we are operating in accordance with protocols,” said Sherrer.

Asked about why Baldy Mountain elected to stay open longer than other Okanagan ski hills, Sherrer emphasized that Baldy Mountain, as a “small ski area,” is different from the larger resorts.

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She said unlike other Okanagan ski hills, Baldy Mountain does not have foreign workers that had to go home and is not a destination resort.

“The whole idea behind closing these larger ski resorts down was their robust accommodation and food and beverage. We don’t have that. We’ve never been a destination resort encouraging travellers. The whole point was to discourage people from travelling, she said.

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“We are a local ski hill, a community ski hill. That was our focus. That’s why we stayed open.”

Baldy Mountain’s season was originally scheduled to close on March 29.

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