Information on Upcoming Downhill Daytrips

As you are now aware, we will be starting to run Downhill daytrip buses as of February 12th.  We will be starting with a maximum of 25 members on the bus and will increase the numbers after February 21st when new provincial guidelines come into effect. 

Until February 11th all of the scheduled trips will continue to be Drive-up ONLY. 

For the first week we will have buses on February 12 (MSLM); February 14 (Blue Mountain Inn), and February 16 (Craigleith).  Note that the Sunday February 13th trip to Blue Mountain remains as a Drive-up only, and the Monday February 14th trip to the Blue Mountain Inn is a Bus Only trip.

TRIP NUMBERDESTINATIONDAYDATEOPTIONSBUS MAXOPEN DATECLOSE DATE
A2013MSLMSat12-Feb-22BUS/Drive-up25Tue Feb 1Tue Feb 8
A2014Blue Mountain SouthSun13-Feb-22Drive-up ONLYN/ATue Feb 1Tue Feb 8
A20915Blue Mountain InnMon14-Feb-22BUS ONLY25Tue Feb 1Tue Feb 8
A20916CraigleithWed16-Feb-22BUS/Drive-up25Tue Feb 1Thur Feb 10

During the second week the following three trips will be available:

TRIP NUMBERDESTINATIONDAYDATEOPTIONSBUS MAXOPEN DATECLOSE DATE
A2015MSLMSat19-Feb-22BUS/Drive-up25Tue Feb 8Tue Feb 15
A2016Blue Mountain SouthSun20-Feb-22BUS ONLY20Tue Feb 8Tue Feb 15
A20918OslerWed23-Feb-22BUS/Drive-up42Tue Feb 8Thurs Feb 17

Pleas note that the Sunday February 20th trip to Blue Mountain South is bus only and is limited to 20 members due to the number of instructors available for that day.   There will be no Monday trip to Blue Mountain on February 21st since it is Family Day and there is a blackout in place for the 5×7 Pass, and the regular lift ticket price is in effect at approximately $100. 

As of February 21st, if the current provincial re-opening plan remains in place, we will be able to increase the maximum number of members on the bus. 

At that point we will return to our regular schedule of four buses per week on Saturday (MSLM), Sunday (Blue Mountain South Lodge), Monday (Blue Mountain Inn), and Wednesday (various private clubs and Blue Mountain later in the season.  The full schedule is available here.

As communicated earlier, the MSLM Lodge and the Blue Mountain South Lodge, will not be open to change in.  In order to accommodate changing on the bus, we have set a maximum of 35 members for Saturday and Sunday trips until further notice.  Monday and Wednesday bus trips we have set a maximum of 42 members until further notice.

For the last week of February the scheduled trips are the following:

TRIP NUMBERDESTINATIONDAYDATEOPTIONSBUS MAXOPEN DATECLOSE DATE
A2017MSLM – Double DoubleSat26-Feb-22BUS/Drive-up35Tue Feb 15Tue Feb 22
A2018Blue Mountain SouthSun27-Feb-22BUS/Drive-up35Tue Feb 15Tue Feb 22
A20919Blue Mountain InnMon28-Feb-22BUS/Drive-up42Tue Feb 15Tue Feb 22
A20920Devil’s GlennWed02-Mar-22BUS/Drive-up42Tues Feb 15Thurs Feb 24

IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR THIS SEASON TO NOTE

  • To book any trip – bus or drive-up – you need to have already provided your proof of vaccination to the club.  If you have not done so, please email it to vac@hpsc.ca. Once our membership team has viewed the proof your membership status will change to include a ‘v’ meaning you are verified and can therefore register for trips.
  • There are new registration deadlines for both bus and drive up downhill daytrips:
    • Saturday, Sunday, Monday trips: Tuesday 6pm (cancellation is Monday 8pm)
    • Wednesday trips: Thursday 6pm (cancellation is Wednesday 8pm)
  • Trips will be open for registration on the Tuesday in the week prior to the registration deadline.  This allows for greater flexibility in case there are changes to regulations or other reasons.
  • You must wear a proper mask at all times on the bus and remain seated (except to go to the washroom).  Quick sips of drink are allowed.
  • As noted earlier, the Mount St. Louis lodge on Saturdays and Blue Mountain South Lodge on Sundays is not available to change in or leave your belongings.  Therefore, you will need to prepare on the bus.  We recommend bringing a towel that you can put on the floor when putting on your boots to reduce the impact on the bus floor.
  • All daytrips will follow a reverse drop off schedule after the 400/7 stop – Bloor/Indian Rd.; Davenport & Yonge; Yonge & Eglinton; Yonge & York Mills.
  • Members who wish to drive up AND take a lesson must register for the lesson on the Drive-up registration module. You must, however, arrange for your own lift ticket. As noted earlier due to the number of instructors available this year, there are a couple of trips where Drive-up is not being offered.
  • As always if you register with a Bus Voucher you must bring the physical voucher with you on the trip.

COVID-19 policies and procedures:

  • All HPSC members must show proof of full vaccination before registering for a club trip. Please see here for the full club vaccination policy.
  • All day trip participants must be members. There will be no test drive or guest days this year.
  • Members must comply with mask policies on the bus and at the resorts. Proper cloth or medical masks must be worn and cover the nose and mouth. Buffs and improper wearing of masks will not be tolerated.
  • Please do not come on a trip if you are experiencing symptoms of illness, have tested positive for COVID-19, or have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19. In these instances, we have a more flexible cancellation policy this year.
  • If you test positive for or suspect you are sick from COVID-19, please inform us so that we can contact trace those on the bus or in your lesson.
  • Failure to adhere to club or public health rules will be considered a breach of conduct and addressed accordingly.
  • The full HPSC COVID Protocol document is available here.

Cancellation procedures

  • The cancellation deadline is Monday at 8pm for Saturday , Sunday, and Monday day trips and Wednesday at 8pm for the following Wednesday day trip.  
  • You must email cancellations@hpsc.ca with the trip number (AXXXX) and the cancellation request. The cancellations team will email you a confirmation of receipt.
  • If you do not follow this procedure before the deadline, you will be considered a “no show” and will be charged for the bus ($30).
  • If you do not come because you are sick or have been in contact with someone who tests positive for COVID-19, you may email daytrips@hpsc.ca within 72 hours after the trip to get a full refund.
  • Please do not come on the trip if you are sick! If we find our no-show rate is too high (costing us too much money and depriving others of seats on the bus), we will have to re-evaluate this policy. Please do not abuse it and use it only when you are genuinely not feeling well.

Is the trip running?

  • An email will be sent to all registered participants by Friday at 12pm. Please do not email for information prior to this time.
  • If you do not receive an email by Friday at 12pm, check your junk mail. Then check the trip status page on the website. You must log in to see the status page.
  • This email/the status page will contain all the information you need for the day trip, plus a link to the COVID-19 screening form that will be used for that day.
  • If we must cancel a trip, we will refund you in full. A bit of inclement weather doesn’t deter us (even rain), but if we deem it unsafe to be on the hills or roads, we may cancel. We appreciate your understanding; cancelling/changing trips is a very difficult decision for our team, and we do whatever possible to get you out skiing. In the past couple of years, we have only cancelled trips when there were extreme weather warnings for high amounts of rain/freezing rain and damaging winds.
  • As in past seasons, if we cancel the bus, the entire trip including drive up is cancelled. 

Tip for a successful COVID season

Patience. Everything is going to take longer. Our volunteers are learning new procedures. Please have patience!

Announcement regarding Downhill Daytrips

The season is fast approaching, and we are finally able to announce how things will run. 

First off, we thank you all for your patience.  It has been a very challenging year for planning.  All of the resorts have and will be short staffed this coming season (as are many service industries), so we ask that you understand and be patient with our resort partners.  They will be doing the best they can with fewer staff and much more work to do. 

PLEASE READ THROUGH CAREFULLY SINCE THIS INCLUDES A LOT OF IMPORTANT INFORMATION

Saturday trips to Mount St. Louis Moonstone (MSLM)

The good news is that the general procedure for our trips to MSLM will be fairly familiar, with a few alternations. 

First off, due to contact tracing requirements, we need to send MSLM our list of members on the bus 3 days prior to each trip.  We do not need to send the list of drive-up members (instructors excluded.) Therefore, the registration deadline will be changed to TUESDAYS by 6 pm instead of our traditional Thursdays. 

As in past years, drive-ups are responsible for purchasing their own ticket and will need to register for HPSC lessons online (cut off is Tuesday by 6pm.) 

Once we arrive, the Bus Captain will, as in the past, go in and pick-up the tickets and will distribute them at the bus.  This year the tickets are actually RIF readable paper cards.  The Bus Captain will also pick up wrist bands that identify you as being fully vaccinated.  This will allow our members to enter the grounds without having to show vaccination proof at the ‘gates’ that will be set up.  Since we have already verified your vaccination proof, MSLM has agreed to this protocol, so our members will not be required to show their proof.  However, we still recommend that you carry your vaccination proof with you.

The biggest change to our normal procedure is that you will not be able to get dressed, put on your boots etc. within the lodge. The lower level will only available be as a warm-up area during the day.  Therefore, members will need to get prepared on the bus (or at their car if driving up.)  To ensure enough room on the bus to do this safely, we are reducing the number of available bus spots to 35 to start with.  (We will be constantly reviewing processes during the season so we might be able to increase that number if we can do so safely). 

Despite reduced bus capacity the bus fee will remain at $30. 

Once members are on hill, you will scan the lift card at the RIF gate at each lift which will “activate” your ticket. You are then free to ski/snowboard/join lessons.

The cafeteria will be open to purchase lunch during the lunch period (11:30am-2:30pm) but will be limited to just 45 minutes.  No bagged lunches will be allowed into the cafeteria or the lower-level warm-up areas; therefore, the bus will be available during the lunch period (12pm to 2pm) for members to eat their bagged lunch.

After 2:30pm the upstairs bar will be open for après without a time limit.  Currently there is no capacity limit but that may change based on public health guidelines.  When you are finished for the day, you can just stay at the bar in your gear or go to the bus and get changed and stay at the bus or change and head back to the lodge for Après.  We ask that if you stay in your gear, that you give your self enough time to get back to the bus in time for departure.  In all cases, we request that members be on the bus 10 minutes prior to departure time so that we can leave on time.  Departure time is not when you need to get to the bus it is when we need to leave. 

Sunday trips to Blue Mountain South

Much like MSLM, the Blue Mountain South lodge will not be open to get changed during the weekend.  Therefore, you will need to get changed on the bus and make your way over to the lifts.  And as with the Saturday trips we are restricting the number of bus seats to 35 to begin with.

Again despite reduced bus capacity the bus fee will remain at $30. 

The Bullwheel pub on the upper level will be open from 11am to 7pm for lunch and après.  However, as at MSLM you cannot bring bagged lunches into the Bullwheel.  If you pack a lunch you will need to eat it on the bus which will be open from 12pm to 2pm. 

To access the Bullwheel you will need to provide your vaccination proof and government ID. 

For those who question why we don’t just go to the Inn lodge instead on Sundays, that lodge will be packed with the Snowhawks and other youth groups on Sundays. 

Just as on Saturdays, when you are finished for the day you can head to the Bullwheel to après in your gear, or head to the bus to get changed, and if you want head back to the Bullwheel.  Again, we ask that you allow enough time to get back and be on the bus 10 minutes prior to departure time.  Departure time is not when you need to get to the bus it is when we need to leave. 

Mondays to Blue Mountain Inn

On Mondays, we will be heading to the Inn as usual.  Members will be allowed to get changed in the Lodge.  However, you will need to go downstairs to get changed and prepare.  As well, you will also need to use the lockers available. Any bags lefts upstairs will be removed. 

Since you will not be required to get prepared on the bus, we will be running full buses on Mondays. 

Midweek trips to the private clubs

Midweek trips will run pretty much as they have in the past.  We will be able to change in the lodge and we will have designated rooms in most of the resorts.   

Just a couple of things regarding the buses:

  • Members must wear a mask while on the bus.
  • Members must remain seated during the bus trip, except to go to the washroom. With the exception of the Bus Captain who will move around to check members in.
  • Members will keep socializing to a minimum, and restricted to those seated beside them
  • When using the washrooms members must wear a mask and use hand sanitizer before and after using the washroom.
  • Members will limit food and drink intake to necessities – quick drinks of water and quick consumption of snacks while the bus is travelling.
  • There will be no passing of food around the bus.

To read the full COVID Protocol document please click here.

As always, members will receive a trip status email a few days before the trip.

PLEASE read these emails carefully as they will include bus pick up times and locations, lesson start times and locations and other relevant information. These may change week over week, so members need to review every email they receive. 

We want to reinforce that our resort partners are under extreme stress and pressure due to new (and changing) regulations, as well as severe staff shortages. We ask that you remain patient with line-ups, staff, or any hiccups that occur along the way.  We also ask that you remember that all of these processes are also new to our Bus Captains, who are fellow members, and who have volunteered their time to make sure that you are able to get to the hill and enjoy your day.  Please be kind.  

Erika Clark

Director of Downhill Daytrips

Wednesdays to private hills are back!

We are returning to Alpine, Osler, Craigleith, Devil’s Glen and Mansfield this year. Bus and drive-up options will be available to members.

Wednesdays to Alpine, Osler, Craigleith and Devil’s Glen will include lessons for members in ski steps 4-9. Friday to Mansfield will be a beginner/back to basics trip with ski steps 1-6 offered. Snowboarders are welcome on all Wednesday downhill day trips but lessons are not available.

All bus members must be registered online for the bus and lift ticket options.

Anyone driving up and taking a lesson with HPSC must register online before the trip.Online trip registration will open approximately 2 weeks before the trip. Once the bus or drive-up spots or sold out, there will be no additional spots added.

We will have full outdoor and indoor access to get ready, store baggage, eat lunch and relax at the end of the day. All private hills have mandated anyone on property (inside or outside) must be fully vaccinated.

Lift tickets per trip are ranging between $50-$70 depending on the hill. Bus prices will remain at $30 for members. We are unfortunately not returning to Georgian Peaks this year as they are not open on Wednesdays.

An update on Mount St.Louis Moonstone and Blue Mountain will be posted in the next weeks, as we’re finalizing a few details about their operations.

Downhill Day Trips Schedule is Now Available!

The 2021/2022 downhill day trips schedule is now posted! Head over to https://www.hpsc.ca/Downhill-Day-Trips-Schedule to view the schedule.

We have a full season of skiing and snowboarding planned for our members to get back on the hill in a fun and safe way. We are still working through some details on bus pick-up/drop-off locations and times, lift ticket costs and other details. Remember to submit your vaccination proof well before January, as non-vaccinated members will not be permitted on downhill day trips (bus or drive-up). Stay tuned for full season details! 

Looking for a volunteer!

Downhill day trips is looking for a volunteer coordinator for Monday day trips. This role includes closing the registration page on Thursday evenings at 6pm, downloading appropriate registration lists from the website and emailing Blue Mountain and Pacific Western Transportation (our bus company). This position requires the coordinator to be available Thursday evenings for about 30 minutes to complete necessary work. 
Helpful skills include familiarity with basic Microsoft Excel and computer skills. The volunteer will receive training and assistance at the beginning of the season. 
If you are interested, please email Erika, Director of Downhill Daytrips at daytrips.director@hpsc.ca

Update on the 2021/2022 downhill day trips season

We are excited to announce that we are planning a full downhill day trips season. Saturday, Sunday, Monday and Wednesday trips will return to your favourite Ontario hills including Blue Mountain, Mount St.Louis Moonstone and private clubs which we have held close partnerships with for many years, with some new additions.

We are also hoping with continued vaccination rates increasing and relaxing of restriction, buses will run for every day trip.

We have decided not to run our day trip to Holiday Valley in Ellicottville, New York for this season as we are focusing our trips on more local destinations to help the Ontario ski industry regain momentum after a challenging 2020/2021 season.

In anticipation for this season, the downhill day trips team is encouraging all members to get vaccinated. Only fully vaccinated members will be permitted to participate in enclosed/indoor spaces such as taking the bus, eating with other HPSC members indoors, etc. A detailed policy will be released closer to the season once updated provincial guidelines and specific ski hill policies are announced.

A schedule will be released in the fall including details on lessons for skiers and snowboarders. Until then, the best way to prepare for this season is to get vaccinated and stay active! We’ll be back on the hill together soon.

December Downhill Day Trips Cancelled

Given the recent announcement regarding Toronto’s lockdown, we will be cancelling both downhill day trips scheduled in December. This was not the way we wanted to start our season, but in addition to Mother Nature not cooperating, this is the course we have to take. We are hopeful trips scheduled in January will go ahead. Stay tuned and stay home!

Update on Downhill Day Trips

The weather is hot and summer is in full swing, but the downhill day trips committee has been planning for snow and winter! Thinking ahead to next season, Erika and David (Director of Snowschool) met virtually with all of our downhill resorts. Hills are fully committed to being open and offering skiing and snowboarding, and are excited to welcome back HPSC skiers and snowboarders. As expected, hills will have COVID policies in place for next season. Masks will be mandatory inside, social distancing protocols will be in place and capacity will be limited. As HPSC reserves our dates well before the winter, we will have reserved lift tickets to all hills. This will include our bus and drive-up members. We are also planning for protocols on the bus, organization to drive-up registrations, and lessons. We will be releasing more details in the fall and closer to the winter, but for now, rest assured that we are doing everything we can to ensure we can get on the hills and enjoy our ski days as much as any other year.

– Erika Clark, Director of Downhill Day Trips

Skiing in the time of COVID-19

As we are all adjusting to new rules and realities, the downhill day trips team is monitoring the ongoing public health situation. As our 2020/2021 season is still months away, much of our planning does take place in the summer and fall months. Currently, larger resorts such as Blue Mountain are only beginning to slowly open their summer operations and do not have any updates for the winter season. We are hopeful that our winter will include skiing and snowboarding, however, it may look a little different. We can expect fewer people on chair lifts and few people in the lodges. As new guidelines and policies emerge, the downhill daytrips committee will keep HPSC members in the loop and updated on decisions or revisions to club policies. Suggestions and feedback are always welcome, and we look forward to seeing you on the hills soon!

What a fantastic season . . . if a bit shorter than we had planned!

While our 70th season ended a little more abruptly than anticipated . . .  it was memorable all the same! 

Despite weather that was a little unpredictable, HPSC Alpine Daytrips successfully ran 39 trips of which half (18) were sold out.  (Moral is to sign up early and sign up often!)  The season started off with a successful and sold out Kick Off and Test Drive trip on December 7 that resulted in a number of new members.

In February at the height of the season we had for the first time in years a fully sold out weekend starting with the equivalent of three full buses (2 full buses and 50 registered drive-ups) for the rescheduled Double Double day, as well as  sold out trips to Blue Mountain on the Sunday and Monday. 

On Saturday of Family Day weekend, we ran what is becoming an annual daytrip to Holiday Valley – a rare trip that both sold out early and had a 100% attendance rate – that is there were zero no-shows.  And at the end of February was our second successful Test Drive day!

In January and February out of the seven MSLM Saturday trips we ran, five were expended to two buses due to filling up the first bus early.  Another success was the major uptick of those registering for our Sunday trips to Blue Mountain – so a shout out to the Sunday@Blue Crew!   

And finally a big thank you to all of the volunteers who arrange and co-ordinate and run the day trips, and those on the back end who reconcile the trips and process the refunds.  Without all of you the trips would not be able to run! 

If you have any suggestions for daytrips please do not hesitate to send an email to daytrips@hpsc.ca.

Please stay safe over the summer and look forward to seeing you on the slopes next December!