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Sweitzer Mountain?

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 
Sweitzer has a reputation of having somewhat iffy conditions because of its low elevation. How was the skiing this year? How does that compare to the "average"?
post #2 of 20
Everything I have read about the place sounds great except for the fog, and its spelled Schweitzer I believe. I heard the views are exceptional and they have good terrain for all levels and no crowds very much like The Big Mountain. As for snow Fernie gets the same rap you mentioned. I think they have a 10 foot base as we speak. Schweitzer had an excellent snow year as did much of the west excluding the southwest.

Alfonse
post #3 of 20
Schweitzer had pretty good snowfall this year. It had a good constant snowfall that built up to about 350 total . Their deeep snowfall days were early and not as much as i would have liked. They do do extensive grooming and keep some runs ungroomed all year. It is a large area with much varied terrain. When it has a good dump it is awesome as there are many good runs and it doesn't get you bored. You can ski all over and not do the same run twice,I love the place and skied it all year. alfonse is right about the lack of crowds,most times you are by yourselves.The workers are good spirited and i have had no bad experiences there. There is much for any skill level.........check their website and look at their trail maps. The rental stuff sucks but there is a good shop run by another company that has good stuff. Sometimes fog would come in near the top and you would have to ski a bit till you were out of it.There are good accomodations there and there is a good deal for about 450 for the weekend including lift tickets for 2 adults and 2 children and ok rooms.I can't wait to go back. Hope to see you there.
post #4 of 20

Schweitzer Idaho

Steve and Alfonse, Sorry back east had such a poor year/we had one last year. Schweitzer/Plus: Good lifts, absolutely some of the best long cruising runs of varying terrain, Good bump skiing, good to excell tree and off piste skiing from just above beginner to all levels of advanced and intrermediatre, also if you can time the ultimate is midweek powder, you can almost ski the whole mt. in powder. You do not have to be an expert to ski all of this mountain, an advaanced skier can tackle anything on the mt., the off piste powder/ski and open skiing at midweek is really awesome. I had about 3 really great powder days this year and only skied there 5 times. Really good food at the bottom of Stella Chair (high speed 6 person chair). My favorite day at Schweitzer is of course the powder but midweek cruising is also one of my favorites. I have skied runs top to bottomon back side and never passed another skier. This is not that odd, Northern Idaho has probably the least crowded skiing in the USA. If you have anything further you want to know or about the other areas just ask. Pete
post #5 of 20
Schweitzer is a great hill, and long enough from anywhere to avoid being crowded out. If it was closer to a major population centre, that would certainly not be the case, as it is very pretty indeed, with good facililties, and seems to get good snows. When I was there (a few years back) it was frozen up, but we were only there a couple of days. The weather was fantastic.
post #6 of 20

Schweitzer..

I've been a pass holder at Schweitzer for 16 years and have a condo there and have seen it change a lot. The area has 2,900 acres in-bounds (bigger than Sun Valley) and lots of bc available. There's also a cat-skiing operation called the Selkirk Powder Company that accesses a huge back bowl area.

We do get fog but this year was exceptionally clear. We had lots of snow and there's still plenty up there. At the government's SNOTEL site, they're still showing 162" at 6,000 feet. The terrain is varied with all different exposures. I've skied corn snow on the front side then skied knee-deep dry pow on the north facing chutes on the same day several times. The Lakeside Chutes are steep but not real long but definitely can provide some fairly extreme rock shots and cornice drops. They do a great job of grooming, if that's what you feel like but also leave a lot of areas ungroomed (mostly because they're too steep to get a cat on) all season. We don't really get much in the way of moguls, mostly because it snows enough to not let them build up, plus they groom the bejeebers out of the runs that would get bumped up. No Joke is probably the best bet for bumps.

Schweitzer's a great hill. I used to travel to Utah, Colorado, or Tahoe to ski before Schweitzer made a bunch of improvements (I used to absolutely hate the place). After they opened the upper terrain though, we bought a condo with the idea that we could have good to great skiing for four and a half months a year instead of potentially great skiing for a week on a trip for about the same amount of money. If you haven't skied Schweitzer, you should make a point of it if you happen to be somewhere in the area. If I was making a trip from the east to ski for a week in the west, I would probably go to Utah first though. However, I would take Schweitzer over Sun Valley due to the lack of crowds, great terrain, and much less expensive. Plus we generally get more and better snow than SV.

Also, if you wanted to ski bum for awhile, Sandpoint's a great town on an awesome lake so the year-round thing would be a good choice.
post #7 of 20

Goldmember

Goldmember is there any one site for posting of available condos for the winter? From a private party .I saw some offered at very reasonable monthly rates and was thinking of this as a good alternative.
post #8 of 20

Schweitzer Condos...

I don't know of any central site for seasonal rentals. They have a rental pool that Schweitzer manages but I don't think they have seasonal rates. I have some friends that rent seasonally (and we did originally) but they/we were connected by word of mouth. I don't know of any right now or I'd try to hook you up. If I hear of something, I'll send you a message.

You could try the Sandpoint website. I think they have some forums that might be a way to find out. Good luck!
post #9 of 20
I'm an east coast guy that happened to end up at schweitzer for a number of ski days a couple of years ago and it is on my lists of favorites out west.

All of the skiing comments were right on target. Lots of nice terrain, terrific views, small to no crowds even on holidays good lift system also clean lodges and concessions. Snow ran the gamut from nice new pow, good groomed to deep concrete depending on the time and temp. Saw some fog and vis on top could be sketch at times.

I really like Sandpoint nice small town vibe with a few good restuarants and shops.
post #10 of 20
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the input. We'll be in the area this summer and I think I'll drive by and take a look.
post #11 of 20
Drive by Whitefish while you're at it.
post #12 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by steveturner
Thanks for the input. We'll be in the area this summer and I think I'll drive by and take a look.
If you like italian food stop at Ivano's you won't regret it. Very good and not typical fare in Sand Point
post #13 of 20
You might also want to go to Eickhardt's just a couple of blocks from Ivano's. It's a quaint little pub with great food. Also a local favorite for Italian is Arlo's. They're all within just a few blocks from one another and are all good.
post #14 of 20
Noted Goldmember.Tried Power House wasn't impressed and the mexican place i forgot it's name but altogether forgettable all around. I'll try those i heard about Eickhardts and i had intended to try that . Now i will for sure. Any more ideas you have please share, Thx
post #15 of 20

Pizza..

If you want some of the best pizza in the world, Second Avenue Pizza , next door to the Hydra is there. Almost forgot! :
post #16 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by GarryZ
Noted Goldmember.Tried Power House wasn't impressed and the mexican place i forgot it's name but altogether forgettable all around. I'll try those i heard about Eickhardts and i had intended to try that . Now i will for sure. Any more ideas you have please share, Thx
Agree that Power House and Mexican Place were unimpressive. Swans Landing was my favorite but I heard it's out of business. I liked Aldo's(?) informal Italian place near ColdWater Creek and Hydra. Serv-a-Burger heading out of town next to Quality Inn was a huge surprise. Looked lethal from the outside but almost In&Out burger good.
post #17 of 20
Schweitzer and Big Mountain both have pretty good terrain but both suffer from relatively low elevation and being on huge lakes, which causes lots of fog and high moisture content snow. You can ski Utah or Colorado for years and never experience the whiteout conditions they get on a fairly regular basis at both areas. When the weather is nice the views are spectacular, but I have also skied both areas more than once when you literally could not see the next chair in front of you, and it wasn't snowing.
post #18 of 20
Incredibly this year, we had lots of snow (over 325") with very little fog. I had about 40 days there this year and didn't have more than just a little fog at the top of the mountain more than 3 or 4 times. You're right though, we generally have foggy conditions. It was a great weather year this year. If we were 2000' higher though, it would be a great improvement.
post #19 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by mudfoot
Schweitzer and Big Mountain both have pretty good terrain but both suffer from relatively low elevation and being on huge lakes, which causes lots of fog and high moisture content snow. You can ski Utah or Colorado for years and never experience the whiteout conditions they get on a fairly regular basis at both areas. When the weather is nice the views are spectacular, but I have also skied both areas more than once when you literally could not see the next chair in front of you, and it wasn't snowing.
Hey, it cuts down on crowds and gapers..
post #20 of 20
I had same experiences as Goldmember . Mostly the fog was at top and when you went down a hundred feet or so it was clear. The fog never was very far down. If it keeps people from going , better for us that go often
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