After emptying its slopes nearly two months ago, Timberline will welcome back skiers and snowboarders this week.
The 83-year-old lodge initially closed in March and, in early April, laid off 471 workers—one of the larger hits to the state's hospitality industry at the time. It is set to reopen Friday, May 15, along with a limited ski area. But operations will look anything but normal.
During the first phase of the relaunch, skiers and snowboarders will need to make online reservations for access to the recreation area—including anyone with a pass. That move allows Timberline to cap the number of visitors on the mountain at one time.
You can secure a spot no more than 24 hours in advance on a first-come, first-served basis—and everyone is required to fill out a COVID-19-related questionnaire.
Once visitors have a reservation, the experience on the mountain will also be much more controlled than usual.
Timberline has set up a checkpoint, where a representative will confirm bookings, provide ski area access instructions and a dashboard display. The resort asks that recreationists not arrive before 8 am.
Only two chair lifts will be operating, and employees are set to monitor lines, ensuring 6 feet of distance is maintained. Anyone hitting the slopes must wear glasses or goggles, along with masks and gloves.
Only a fraction of rooms at the lodge will available for overnight stays. Guests must also complete a questionnaire, wear cloth masks and carry a hotel-issued ID.
The ski area is scheduled to be open 9 am-3 pm, weather permitting. Anyone who does not adhere to Timberline's safety guidelines can be booted from the area for the day or the entire season, or face a notice of trespass.
Timberline has not indicated how many employees will be brought back once it's fully up to speed.