5 Top Rated Ski Resorts in Idaho (2023)
You might not immediately think of Idaho when you are planning your winter getaway. After all, it’s not your fault as most people are not aware of the charming winter destination that Idaho is. This is why it often surprises many people to learn that Idaho is actually home to some of the best skiing terrain in the country.
Idaho is a paradise for skiers, especially if you head over to the western part of the Gem State. Being home to such gorgeous skiing terrain, it is no wonder then that the state also houses some of the most gorgeous ski resorts in the entire United States. The ski resorts in Idaho can safely be divided into two main parts – one in the far northwest of the state and the second in the central southern part. This division of terrain has made it easier to visit several charming ski resorts during your holiday. If you are headed to the eastern part of the state, you will even find a few smaller ski resorts there that are enough to take your breath away with their sheer beauty and scenic location.
5 Top Rated Ski Resorts in Idaho
Being home to so many gorgeous ski resorts, here is a list of some of the top rated ski resorts in Idaho to make things easier for the first-time visitor.
1. Sun Valley Resort
Anyone who does not visit the Sun Valley Resort when in Idaho would lose out on some of the most incredible natural beauty the state has to offer. The Sun Valley Resort has some amazing snow and big runs to offer to the skiing enthusiast. However, it is important to note that the cost at Sun Valley is nearly two times as much as the other resorts in the state – though you do get a lot of worth for the money you spend, especially when you try out the huge vertical drop the resort has to offer. Sun Valley also has the most number of runs in Idaho combined with some of the greatest lodging and dining options. In fact, you will be spoilt for choices when it comes to the delicious cuisine offered at the resort.
It is not without reason that the Sun Valley Resort is known to be a hotspot for the rich and famous in the winter months. Sun Valley Resort is also famous for being the country’s original ski resort considering that the first-ever chairlift in the US became operational at the Sun Valley in 1937. With two mountains that offer over 2000 acres of land to explore and some of the most interesting skiing heritage that dates back all the way to the 1930s, you will not be disappointed to see the breathtaking mountain scenery.
Any skiing enthusiast must not miss this world-class resort as the Bald Mountain provides some of the most epic bowl skiing you can dream of. For beginners also this is a dream skiing destination as there is the treeless Dollar Mountain that has clear slopes to allow newbies to learn on easily. For freestylers, meanwhile, there are eight terrain parks to practice their skills at. The skiing season at the Sun Valley Resort usually begins in the middle of November and lasts till the first week of April, depending on the snow.
2. Bogus Basin
Located just under an hour from the beautiful capital city of Boise, don’t let the name of this resort fool you. Bogus Basin is anything but bogus. For those who don’t want to be around the crowds, Bogus Basin serves as the ideal place to disappear for a winter vacation. Unlike the Sun Valley Resort, Bogus Basin is also a much cheaper resort, making your ski vacation very much affordable. This ski resort is run by a not-for-profit organization and any extra money they earn is put back into running of the place in an attempt to maintain the low lift ticket prices.
Getting nearly 27 feet of snow in a year, the ski hill here provides the ambitious skier with many hours of skiing fun or snowboarding if that’s your sport of choice. You can choose to check out more than 91 runs depending on your skill level. No matter which of the 91 named runs you take, you will end up finding yourself on a different part of the mountain each time, such is the uniqueness of Bogus Basin. The front part of the mountain is better suited for beginners and intermediate skiers, while the backside runs are better for advanced riders and skiers.
Bogus Basin is a huge ski resort and has 11 lifts, even having four high-speed quad detachable chairs. The uphill capacity can easily host nearly 10,000 people. Apart from downhill skiing, there is also a separate tubing area, which has its own lift. Having a decent vertical drop of 1800 feet, it is interesting to note that Bogus Basin is the biggest ski resort in all of Southern Idaho.
Another great thing about Bogus Basin is that the mountain offers 11 fantastic dining options, ranging from a Hawaiian-themed yurt to the Beach, to the Smokehouse that whips up some of the best barbecues in all of Idaho.
3. Schweitzer Mountain
Located in northern Idaho, very close to the Canadian border, is the majestic Schweitzer Mountain. This ski resort is awesomely placed at a higher latitude than the majority of the other ski resorts in the state, providing some of the most stunning views from this altitude. Its elevated location itself has made Schweitzer Mountain one of the most stunning skiing destinations in the state.
Sitting so close to the Canadian border, it is no surprise that the resort attracts many Canadians as well every year. The mountain receives nearly 7.6 meters (300 inches) of snow every year. The high point of visiting Schweitzer Mountain apart from the deep snow is the steep and well-groomed terrain, and far fewer visitors to crowd the mountain as compared to the other ski resorts.
The Schweitzer Mountain Resorts is quite big, spreading out over 2900 acres of slops that can be accessed easily by ski lifts. The resort has ten ski lifts and is home to 92 trails, including having the longest continuous groomed run that runs for over 3.2 kilometers (two miles) known as the Little Blue Ridge Run.
The resort is famous for its beautiful and impressive terrain parks. There are three terrain parks in the Schweitzer Mountain Resort – the Terrain Garden, Stomping Grounds, and the Southside Progression Park. All of these combined make for a stunning and adventurous visit in Northern Idaho, though it should be noted that Schweitzer Mountain is not the best place for beginners to try their luck. It is more suited for intermediate and advanced level skiers.
4. Brundage Mountain
Brundage Mountain is a famous ski resort that is perfectly located to capture the snow from the storms that come in from the south as well as the north. Due to this, you will always find light fluffy snow covering the resort. Brundage Mountain receives nearly 26 feet of snow every season. This means that visitors are treated to some untouched snow stashes every time they visit.
The resort has just over 50 runs, but there are several areas here where the main draw for visitors is not the runs, but the powdery snow. The resort is especially known for its lift-serviced backcountry bowls and tree skiing facilities. There are even two separate terrain parks for freestylers and snowboarders especially complete with boxes, rails, rollers, and jibes.
With so much to offer, it’s really no surprise that Brundage Mountain is so sought after.
5. Tamarack Resort
The Tamarack Resort is one of the newest ski resorts in Idaho and it is rapidly becoming one of the most sought-after skiing destinations in the state. In fact, it is well poised to become the next big skiing paradise in Idaho. As you get ready to ski at the Tamarack Resort, you will find a pair of express chairlifts that take you all the way up to the 7700 feet summit in no time at all. It will surprise you to know that it takes just a little under 12 minutes to reach the summit from where the first sight of the snowcapped landscape is truly breathtaking.
Having modern family homes, sloe-side cottages, and wooden mountain chalets, Tamarack Resort is the perfect skiing destination in Idaho for the whole family.