Having relocated to Billings MT from Gypsum, CO I have been a bit depressed at times about my ski options. But the good news is that Big Sky, MT is an easy 3 hour drive from Billings, and through my Seattle buddy we scored a free condo(ummm it pays to have a boss who owns property in a great locale, but “needs” people to look after it from time to time”) for 6 nights over President’s day weekend.
We drove up Sat, and started skiing on Sunday Feb 15th. Conditions were pretty good with plenty of windblown from the previous week. Took our first tram ride (it had been many years for us since our last Big Sky trip-like 15)-needless to say we were not disappointed at all-we dropped into the backside via Marx/Lennin and had 2k verts of steeps through knee deep windblown down to the track-this is a great line when the snow is good-but it does face south-the next day the same run had set up.
Monday was spent skiing perfect wind blown goodness on Challenger-this was/is a rock garden,
But there were ways to avoid-took a few scratches on the Mantras, but no cores
We witnessed a guy get into trouble-he turned straight into a bunch of rocks-double ejected and bounced through the andesite-ouch-the skiing was very good however-snow quality was excellent
It started snowing Monday night and did not really stop until Thursday morning-Wed was full on powder and white room conditions-my favorite day-
Thursday was bluebird and Warren Millerish-knee to thigh deep pow of the tram-someone got stuck in 3rd gully and was screaming his/her head off until the patrol came around-just enough snow to cover the rock bands
The skiing was so good, that we really did not take the time to take very many photos-I will try and put up a couple.
Big Sky rocks
Highlights from the week were:
Getting a surprise powder dump (12” officially, but twice that up high)
Finding some lines off the tram (Otter Slide/Gullies/Gully Traverse/Under the tram line-was a favorite)
Being inspired by the friendly core scene-(they do know how to smoke in more ways than one)
And getting on some serious steep terrain with fantastic conditions-temp was around 15-20 degs F most of the time