Ski & Snowboard

 

BIG MOUNTAIN/WHITEFISH MOUNTAIN RESORT

Ski & Snowboard Resort Review

Celebrating the 60th snow season in 2008 Big Mountain/Whitefish Mountain Resort MONTANA , USA has an exceptional annual snowfall record, a well laid out and efficient lift system and first class old fashioned friendly customer service.

Big Mountain/Whitefish Mountain Resort Skiing and Snowboarding Terrain

Big Mountain is divided naturally into three sections; the large Front Side, the North Side and Hellroaring Basin.

The Front Side has wide gentle beginner trails, well groomed extensive intermediate trails and aggressive chutes descending from the Summit.

The North Side and Hellroaring Basin have double black diamond powder fields, long cruising trails and fantastic tree skiing and snowboarding terrain.

Big Mountain ski picture

©Brian Schott Whitefish Partners/Whitefish News Room

Advanced Skiing and Snowboarding at Big Mountain

On the Front Side Chairs 4 and 5 service steep ungroomed trails while the North Bowl Face and Schmidt’s Chute are littered with cliff drops and gullies leading down into heavily treed terrain. For the steepest tree skiing and snowboarding in the region drop off Russ’s Street into Don’s Descent and First Creek.

The North Side has some very challenging marked advanced trails, the steep Bighorn is littered with huge moguls however most skiers and snowboarders chose to stay off piste and disappear into the trees and lower powder fields.

Sling Shot and the Picture Chutes in Hellroaring Basin start off treeless then lead down into dense forest.

The recent upgrade of Chair 1 gives mogul lovers direct access from the village to the summit to tackle the bumps and steeps of Purgatory located below the chairlift.

Intermediate Skiing and Snowboarding at Big Mountain

Intermediates really relish the long groomed trails at Big Mountain, on the Front Side Big Ravine, Toni Matt and Inspiration trails are made for fast GS turns.

The North Side’s trails are particular highlights; Gray Wolf trail is seemingly endless and the tree lined Whitetail and Goat Haunt are steep and challenging whilst George’s Gorge is a great introduction to tree skiing and snowboarding.

The longest trail at Big Mountain is Hell Fire in Hellroaring Basin it is a whopping 3.3 miles long! In good snow conditions confident intermediates could tackle the advanced Glory Hole trail leading down to Hell Fire, while it is not regularly groomed it is not excessively steep.

Beginner Skiing and Snowboarding at Big Mountain

On the Front Side the main beginner area is under Chair 6 and around the Big Easy Carpet in front of the Day Lodge. The Big Mountain Snowsports School is based in the Day Lodge and has excellent introductory lessons for first time skiers and snowboarders.

Once beginners have learnt the basics move up to Chair 2 for the long winding gentle Home Again trail before tackling the shorter but slightly steeper Question Mark and Ski Way trails under Chair 3.

The beginner trails are all located on the lower mountain areas but confident beginners could catch Chair One up to the Summit before taking the well groomed intermediate Russ’s Street trail down again.

On the North Side there is one lengthy fun beginner trail, Caribou which is accessed via the intermediate trail Moe Mentum.

Big Mountain/Whitefish Mountain Resort Terrain Park and Halfpipe

The Fishbowl Terrain Park, located under Chair 3, has jumps, rails, hits and boxes for all different levels of free riders. It is illuminated during night skiing and snowboarding and has its own rockin’ sound system.

There will be no superpipe for the 2008/2009 winter season instead a boarder/skier cross course will be constructed in the terrain park as will an expert jump and a quarter pipe.

Big Mountain/Whitefish Mountain Resort Snowcat Skiing and Snowboarding

Snowcat skiing and snowboarding on the North Side backcountry terrain is available at Big Mountain. Up to 8 powder runs can be had in a full day, the cost is USD$120 plus a lift ticket.

Big Mountain/Whitefish Mountain Resort Night Skiing and Snowboarding

Every Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings night skiing and snowboarding is offered at Big Mountain between 4.30pm and 9pm. Chair 2 and Chair 3 service seven illuminated trails.

Other Activities at Big Mountain/Whitefish Mountain Resort

Off the skis and snowboard explore the surrounding areas of Big Mountain on a snowmobile tour, try cross country skiing, snow biking or dog sledding.

Guided day tours of Glacier National Park are available, explore the wilderness on snow shoes and learn about the local animals and the glaciers.

Big Mountain/Whitefish Mountain Resort Shopping

The Big Mountain Village has ski and snowboard equipment shops, souvenir and gift shops, a kid’s clothing store, a jewellery shop and a general grocery and liquor store.

Big Mountain Rentals and The Day Lodge Ski Shop both have a wide variety of ski and snowboard rental equipment available. The recently improved Base Lodge houses rental equipment, day lockers and the snowsports center.

Big Mountain/Whitefish Mountain Resort Restaurants

The Big Mountain Village has ten restaurants and bars.

For fine dining go to Café Kandahar located in the Kandahar Lodge serving modern French cuisine infused with Louisiana influences, it has a very extensive wine list and excellent service.

The infamous Hellroaring Saloon and Eatery has been in the Big Mountain Village for 35 years, it serves hearty steaks in a friendly and boisterous atmosphere.

Moguls Bar and Grill is open for both lunch and dinner serving tasty salads, pastas and burgers, it also has a large kid’s menu to keep the little ones happy.

On the slopes the Summit House Restaurant, at 7,000 feet serves hot and cold lunches amongst breath taking views.

Big Mountain/Whitefish Mountain Resort Nightlife

The Bierstube pub is an institution in the Big Mountain Village opening for après drinks and remaining open til late every night frequently hosting live bands.

To make some new friends head to the Hellroaring Saloon, it’s always packed with international guests.

In nearby Whitefish there are additional sports bars and pubs with music ranging from jazz to reggae.

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Statistics

Elevation
 
ft
m
summit
6,817
2,078
Base
4,464
1,361
Average Snowfall
300 inches
Lifts
14
Trails - view map
93
3,000 acres
Terrain %
advanced
30
intermediate
50
beginner
20
Halfpipe
no
Terrain Park
1
Resort Website