Bridger Bowl

Check out the Unofficial Guide to Bridger Bowl for details on things like secret stashes, best places to ski, avoiding lift lines, and other local insights on the mountain. 


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Trail Map
Trail Map

Looking down from the Ridge at the top of the Slausman''s Chairlift:


Rio’s Very Unofficial Guide to Bridger Bowl
(Under construction)
This guide is currently under construction. I will attempt to finish it as the season progresses and I have a chance to refresh my memory, snow pack permitting.
Getting on the lifts:
Three of the lifts are Bridger Bowl (Powder Park, Bridger and Pierre’s Knob) have lift loading assistance hardware from ChairKids. To load on lifts using them move forward in the lift gate and lean gently on the gate. Do not crash into the gate like you’re a World Cup racer; you will get yelled at. When it is your turn to load the gates will open. Let yourself glide down onto the ChairKids mat. You do not have to do any stepping or pushing yourself except on days when it’s well above freezing. If you have a child with you that needs a boost tell the lift operators and they will have the ChairKid device raise up. No physical boosting of the child will be necessary. If you are loading with a child getting a lift be aware that the chair will be coming in much lower than normal.
Two of the lifts at Bridger (Alpine and Virginia City) are vintage Riblet chairs. Riblet chairs are two seat chairs with the pole in the center. When loading onto these lifts be sure to look towards the center of the chair. If you are riding solo on these lifts sit on the inside.
The Mountain:
Bridger Bowl has four distinct areas: Lower Mountain, Upper Mountain, Schlauchman’s Chair and the Ridge. The lower mountain is mainly beginner terrain. The upper mountain has runs from easy greens to extreme expert. The Ridge is mainly expert terrain that requires some hiking to access. Schlauchman's Chair is mainly expert terrain, also. Both Schlauchman's Chair and the Ridge require the rider to have a transceiver. Shovels and partners are not required, but highly recommended for both.
Lower Mountain:
The lower mountain is mainly beginner and lower-intermediate terrain. It is serviced by 3 chair lifts. Snowflake Chair services the bunny hill off to the left of the Saddlepeak Lodge. Powder Park Chair is a quad located to the right of the base area. Virginia City is an old Riblet Chair adjacent to the Saddlepeak Lodge.
While the lower mountain is beginner terrain is sometimes has the least hospitable snow & weather. Due to winds, manmade snow and sun exposure it is more prone to icy snow than the rest of the mountain. It is usually more wind exposed on windy days. When cold arctic fronts move through inversions often make the lower mountain significantly colder than the upper mountain, also. 
The most popular run off the Powder Park chair is Sunnyside which is to the left as you exit the lift. This run is where the terrain park is, also.  The most popular run off Virginia City is Coyote Flats which is to the right as you exit the lift.
Upper Mountain:
The upper mountain has terrain ranging from advance beginner to extreme. It is serviced by three lifts, Alpine, Pierre’s Knob and the legendary Bridger Chair. Alpine chair is an old Riblet two seater on the north end of resort. It services mainly advance beginner and intermediate terrain. The most popular runs on the Alpine chair are Limestone, Wolverine, Bobcat and the Three Bears.  To get to Alpine Lift take Powder Park and exit to the right.
Most people exit the Alpine chair to the right which leads to easier terrain.  The first run you encounter to the right is Limestone, an easy green run. Some beginners find the first turns on Limestone daunting. To avoid that part of the run, keep going right and follow the easy way down signs. As you proceed down Limestone you will see signs pointing to other runs. Keep to the left to stay on Limestone.
Two other popular runs accessed off Limestone are Wolverine and Bobcat. Wolverine is a narrow, fun blue run that meanders through the trees. Bobcat is a much more wide open run with a good pitch for warming up on. Bobcat is usually groomed just after Bridger closes so it has a smooth surface under any powder that might accumulate overnight making it an ideal run for people starting to ski powder.
The Three Bears Bowl is a good area to do some off-piste skiing. The bowl consists of three chutes, Papa Bear, Mama Bear and Baby Bear. You access the chutes by exiting Alpine chair to the left and following the traverse. The first chute you come to is Baby Bear, the second Mama Bear and the third Papa Bear. 
There are numerous ways to return to the other parts of the mountain from Alpine lift. The easiest is to ski down Limestone. When you return to the lift follow Mully Road which is just below the base of the lift. This route will take you back to the base area. If you want to access other parts of the upper mountain then either take the Three Bears Traverse and keep going until you reach Powder Park or take Rugrat which is at the bottom of Alpine Face.
Pierre’s Knob Lift is on the other side of the ski area from Alpine Lift. It services a good selection of intermediate runs with a few expert runs, also. To get to Pierre’s Knob take either the Virginia City Lift or Powder Park Lift and exit to the left then follow the road.
(To be continued)

A Week in Rewind:



Photo of the Day

Exposure: Mainly E with some N and S.
Average annual snowfall: 297" 
Best snow months: January & February

Airport: Gallatin Field

Airlines: Alaska, Allegiant, Delta, Frontier, Horizon, United, US Airways

Nonstop flights from Atlanta (seasonal), Chicago (seasonal), Denver, Las Vegas, Minneapolis/St. Paul, Phoenix, Seattle, San Francisco (seasonal), and Salt Lake City

Bridger Bowl is located 16 miles north of Bozeman, Montana on Highway 86. It is an easy 20 minute drive on a well maintained road that provides one of the easiest and most scenic accesses to a major ski area that you will ever experience.
  • Off I-90 Traveling West take exit #309 (East Main Street) and travel about 1.5 miles to N. Rouse. Turn right on Rouse and stay on the road all the way to Bridger Bowl, approximately 16 miles. Rouse becomes Bridger Canyon Road outside the city limits. Turn left into Bridger Bowl at sign.
  • Off I-90 Traveling East take exit #306 (North 7th - MT 205 W). After leaving the interstate off ramp, turn left and cross back over I-90. Immediately look for a Sinclair gas station on the right hand side of the road. Take a right hand turn onto Griffin Drive after the gas station. Griffin Drive will run into Highway 86, Bridge Drive, turn left onto the Highway. Follow approximately 14.4 miles to Bridger Bowl turn on your left.

Name Description Maximum Occupancy Price Range

Homewood Suites

1023 Baxter Lane Bozeman, MT 59715


Convenient location, built 2010, wireless Internet, indoor pool & hot tub, complimentary breakfast and evening reception, washer/dryer standard, free parking

Extra person charges may apply



C'mon Inn

6139 E Valley Center 

Bozeman, MT 59718



Convenient location, indoor pool & hot tub, complimentary breakfast, free airport shuttle, wireless Internet, refrigerator/microwave, free parking

Extra person charges may apply


La Quinta

620 Nikles Dr. Bozeman, MT 59715


Convenient location, brand-new, indoor pool & hot tub, fitness center, wireless Internet, guest laundry, pets welcome, complimentary breakfast, refrigerator/microwave, free parking


Extra person charges may apply


Comfort Inn

1370 N. 7th Ave. Bozeman, MT 59715


Convenient location, wireless internet, indoor pool, whirlpool, sauna, fitness room, complimentary continental breakfast, free coffee, wake-up service, guest laundry facilities, free parking

Extra person charges may apply $80-$140

Bridger Bowl has three cafeterias and a Bar and Grill which together provide seating for nearly 1,200 guests. The Saddle Peak Lodge located adjacent to our beginner lifts in the base area is our new family cafeteria. It serves continental breakfast items, excellent hot and cold sandwiches, burgers, pizza and home-made baked goods. The Jim Bridger Lodge cafeteria in the base area is open for full breakfasts, lunch and late afternoon snacks. Jimmy B's Bar and Grill, located in the Jim Bridger Lodge, offers sit-down service and a full bar. Up on the mountain the Deer Park Chalet opens mid-morning and serves lunch. We do not have a dinner service on the mountain. If you are staying in one of the properties out of town, be sure to stock up with groceries before leaving Bozeman. Many guests staying out of town make the 20 minute drive to town for dinner where there are plenty of great restaurants from which to chose.
Over the Tapas 19 S Willson Ave BozemanMT 59715 (406) 556-8282  Consistent, quality food in a casual atmosphere. No reservations. 
The Garage Soup Shack & Mesquite Grill  451 E Main St BozemanMT 59715 (406) 585-8558 Excellent lunches and light dinners, great beer selection. No reservations.
Western Cafe  43 E Main St BozemanMT 59715 (406) 587-0436 A Bozeman after-late-night breakfast tradition; "the best breakfast in town."


The 2011-12 Season starts December 9 and ends April 8, 2012


Lift Ticket Prices



Book lift tickets online

  • Powderhorn Package: 4 days/nights Lifts and lodging, $269/pp double occupancy
  • Getaway Package: 2 days skiing, 1 night loging, $129/pp double occupancy

Snowsports School

Equipment Rentals

Child Care


Good: Gladed trees and chutes on Pierre's Knob.
Better: Two mile long intermediate run down Limestone Ridge off the Alpine Chair for Mom, Hully Gully for the kids.
Best: Schlasman's and The Ridge give Bridger Bowl its reputation as a playground for serious skiers.


Bridger Bowl

Bridger Bowl is primarily a community ski area that also caters to destination travelers. The 500' of steep hike-to terrain on the Ridge has been a draw to extreme skiers since 1976. In 2008 Bridger added its first new expansion lift in 30 years, accessing 300 acres and 1,700 feet of steep terrain and in 2010 replaced two main lifts with one triple chair, increasing the number of skiers served by 7.5 percent and reducing undue stoppages. Dumps of the area's patented "cold smoke" can exceed 70 inches.The ski school is top-notch and the mountain offers terrain for the whole spectrum of skiers from beginners to world-class freeskiing competitors. Bozeman serves as the main bed base with most of the lodging and entertainment options. There are many excellent restaurants, shops, galleries, microbreweries and bars in the town and the community supports a strong cultural presence with a wide variety of music available ranging from country to jazz. Yellowstone National Park is only 90 miles from Bozeman. Bridger Bowl is a private, nonprofit ski area. All profits are invested back into the area for improvements and operational budgets, which allows the resort to provide a high quality ski experience for a very low price.

Snow making percent4%
Lifts-Surface Lifts-Magic carpet
Lifts-Surface Lifts-Rope tow
Lifts-Surface Lifts-Poma
Lifts-Surface Lifts-T bar
Lifts-Surface Lifts-J bar
Lifts-Chair Lifts-Single
Lifts-Chair Lifts-Double3
Lifts-Chair Lifts-Triple3
Lifts-Chair Lifts-Quad1
Lifts-Chair Lifts-High speed quad
Lifts-Chair Lifts-Five person
Lifts-Chair Lifts-Six person
Lifts-Chair Lifts-Eight person
Lifts-Coggle train
Lifts-Total number of lifts7
Lifts-Total lift capacity
Trails-4-Expert only30%
Trails-5-Terrain park1
Trails-6-Half pipe
Runs-Steepest run
Runs-Longest run3 miles
General-Base elevation6100'
General-Vertical drop2700'
General-OwnerBridger Ski Foundation
General-Mountain rangeBridger Range, Rocky Mts.
General-Annual skier visits
General-Back country accessExcellent
General-Total area in bounds2000 acres
General-Snow making coverage
Model Name/TypeMPNEAN/UPC


Very cheap prices for the type of mountain.  Fine for every type of skier from beginner to powder skier.