December 7, 2016
You don’t have to ski at Caribou Highlands, because there’s plenty to do at the cabin and in the area to keep you busy. But if you are planning on heading down the hill, getting back up again is pretty important. Unless you are Superman or have a very compact jet pack, getting to the top of an 800-foot mountain is pretty tough without a lift.
The enclosed gondolas used at Lutsen are almost worth a trip by themselves. Large enough for 8 passengers and brand new in 2015, the gondolas are so nice there are actually tickets for people who don’t need to ski but want to see the view. That view stretches for 100 miles and includes the stark forests, sharp coastal hills, and broad expanse of Lake Superior.
Here’s what you need to know before hopping on board. During the winter season the lift is operated from 9:30AM through 4:00PM Monday through Friday and on Saturdays, Sundays, and Holidays they open a half-hour earlier at 9:00AM.
As for the cost, during the “prime season” the cost for adults (13+) is $82/day plus taxes and fees, children (6-12) $67/day plus taxes and fees, and those 5 and under can ride free with a paying adult. Also, if you return your ticket by 12:30PM or purchase it after 1:00PM you save $7. During the final ski days, in April, they have greatly reduced lift ticket prices.
So far, all those prices are for single day lift tickets. Lutsen Mountains also offers 4-packs, giving you four non-transferable single day lift tickets, and season passes. For adults the 4-pack is $288 and the child 4-pack is $228. For season passes the cost is: adults $549.00, children $399.00, Seniors (65+) $499. Four people can get a family season pass for $1,896.00.
Sorry to complicate things. But, all the prices we mentioned so far are for non-northland residents. For those who live in certain areas the prices are different.
“Lutsen Mountains offers discounted lift tickets and season passes to full-time students or year-round Northland residents with home or school mailing addresses with zip codes beginning with 557, 558 or 54880,” says the Lutsen Mountains website.
In case you haven’t studied the area zip codes recently, these zip codes include the whole Arrowhead Region, most of the Iron Range, the Twin-Ports, and along I-35 to a little north of Hinckley.
For these local people the single day ticket is $62 for adults and $47 for children. The local 4-pack is $228 for adults and $168 for children. The season pass for locals is $499.00 for adults, $379.00 for children, $449 for seniors, and $1,756.00 for the 4 person family pass.
For northlander and non-northlander alike the benefits of the season passes are the same. Of course, you get to use the ski lift as much as you want. You also get 20% off food and beverages at Papa Charlie’s, Rosie’s Cafe, and Summit Chalet.
Wow, those are a lot of numbers and options and those are just the basic lift prices. Lutsen Mountains also rents equipment, and has packages for including lodging, lift tickets, and some including equipment. Lutsen Mountains also offers flex ticket, demand tickets, and ticket specials. There are a lot of options and you can go to lutsen.com to get the full details.