A wire cable stretches high above the forest ground and connects two platforms for zip lining at Eaglecrest Ski Area. Zip line tours are set to be offered again this summer at the ski area starting in late June after three years of halted operations due to COVID-19 and staffing issues. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire)

A wire cable stretches high above the forest ground and connects two platforms for zip lining at Eaglecrest Ski Area. Zip line tours are set to be offered again this summer at the ski area starting in late June after three years of halted operations due to COVID-19 and staffing issues. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire)

Zip line tours to restart at Eaglecrest in late June

It remained out of commission for the past three years.

Zipline tours are set to be offered again this summer at the Eaglecrest Ski Area after three years of halted operations due to COVID-19 and staffing issues, according to the tour’s third-party operator Kawanti Adventures.

The tour, which includes five separate zip lines and starts adjacent to the Ptarmigan Chairlift and ends just southeast of the Base Lodge at Eaglecrest, is anticipated to be back in service starting June 28, according to the company’s website.

The tour titled Alpine Zipline Adventure is outlined on the website to last around 3 hours and 45 minutes and ticket prices start at $235 per adult and $175 for children ages four to 12 years old.

Christa Hagan, the managing director at Kawanti Adventures, said in an email interview that the company recently hired an experienced operations manager for the tours.

In early May, the City and Borough of Juneau Assembly OK’d an ordinance allowing the company to operate at Eaglecrest for the next five summer seasons after its previous five-year permit agreement was set to expire in June.

The company is permitted to operate up to 20 zip line tours per day, every day of the week.

Hagan said that though the company has owned the zip line since 2018, it hasn’t been in operation since 2019 due to a variety of factors including the COVID-19 pandemic and the canceled or limited cruises seasons in 2020-2021, along with difficulty hiring in 2022.

The company also previously owned another zip line on Douglas known as the Alaska Canopy Adventures, however, it was decommissioned in 2017 after 10 years in operation.

The zip line tours infrastructure was originally built in 2006 and tours were offered at the site from then until 2018, though ownership varied throughout the more than a decade of operations. Kawanti Adventures originally purchased the zip line, formerly owned by Alaska Zipline Adventures, in the winter of 2018.

Eaglecrest Ski Area general manager Dave Scanlan said the revival of the zip line tours at Eaglecrest will help kickstart the city-owned ski resort’s ongoing efforts to attract more summer visitors.

“We’re really excited to see them back up and operating — its a really popular tourism activity

We want to continue supporting,” he said. “With the expected amount of cruise ship tourists this summer, it’s important to have diverse activities that they can participate in and kind of spread them out beyond the core base of downtown.”

• Contact reporter Clarise Larson at clarise.larson@juneauempire.com or (651)-528-1807.

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