UPDATE Monday 12:20 p.m. — After the Denver7 story aired this past weekend, Eldora staff reached out to our reporter to say they will now charge for parking only on Saturday and Sunday, and not Friday.
ELDORA MOUNTAIN, Colo. – Starting this coming Saturday, Eldora will charge $20 for any car with two or fewer people on peak days – which are on weekends.
The reasoning behind the change dates back to November 25, when the resort needed to turn between 200-300 cars away because the parking lots were at maximum capacity.
“We conducted a study,” said Sam Bass, the spokesperson for Eldora. “In that study we found out that an average of 1.7 (people) were in each car coming to Eldora, which can make our lots congested. We decided this approach was a way to move the needle to help with our parking congestion. The goal is to get more people here, and it’s hard if only one person is coming in their car.”
Bass told Denver7 it is not trying to make money from this, but rather encourage people to carpool or take public transportation.
“We’ll see about 5,000 people on the snow on a big day,” Bass said. “We hope it doesn’t turn people away, we hope it convinces people to car pool, or ride share or to arrive with three or more people in the car. We want them to be creative and find a way to avoid those fees. We hope we don’t make any money with this program.”
Bass said there’s been an increase of people coming to Eldora and part of that reason could be the IKON pass. The IKON season pass allows access to Eldora and other mountains.
According to Bass, Eldora-only pass holders will not have to pay parking, however they will have to pay next year under the same rules as everybody else. The reason is because Eldora-only pass holders only make up 10 percent of Eldora’s visitors.
Eldora will start the parking program on Dec. 15. There are parking kiosks already in place at the resort to welcome the change.