Skiing Big Sky, Montana…The Lone Peak

I made it to the top!

And made it back done! All in one piece thank you for the gondola that carried me to safety. Did you really think I would ski that part of the mountain?

Besides this big achievement, what did I like about Skiing Big Sky?

  • The Mountain

The ski area is so large (5,800 acres), than even on a busy weekend, there are no lines at the chair lift.

There are runs for all skill levels, at least a large amount made just for me (Green and Blue).

The runs are wide (which I need to make my turns) and well groomed (I don’t know how to ski in powder).

Ski valet is offered at the bottom of the hill so we did not have to carry our skis back to the hotel. It’s one thing I do not care about the sport; it is so much work before you even get started.

The hilltop restaurant and bar has a southern exposure deck, and an outside fireplace, a wonderful stop before the last run of the day.

  • The Food

The Cabin Bar & Grill serves steaks, wild game and seafood. The food is source locally. Make reservation, the place seems to always be busy. We called twice and could not get in. We finally were able to make a reservation on a slow weekday night. I liked that the owner was there to talk to us and share his passion for Big Sky.

Andiamo Italian Restaurant, serves German food. Of course not, it is an Italian restaurant right at the bottom of the ski hill. It has a fantastic atmosphere and delicious food. They have happy hour from 3:00 to 5:30 pm. We tried a number of small plates that satisfied our appetite for the evening.

Everett 8000 is the hilltop restaurant. Open until the chair lift closes. Stop for a drink, food or for nothing else to admire the view.

Scissorbills Saloon is where you’ll find the locals and the best burger in town, plus it is affordable.

  • The People you meet. They are all unique and fascinating individuals with one common motivation, the love of the mountain, skiing and the life style.

The ski instructor at Yellowstone Village: he is 38 years old, educated, divorced, move to Big Sky to get away from his life in the city. Lived in Germany for the past 2 years and came back to Big Sky. He works part time in the winter and does not know what he will do this summer.

The bartender: he is 34 years old. He came to Big Sky after high school for one season and never left. He takes 3 months vacation off-season. Works at Big Sky in the summer too.

The sky patrol guy: he is 74 years old. He worked full time on the hill his entire life. He owns a ranch and outfitters company 90 miles from Big Sky. He offers guided hunt in Yellowstone Park Country from mid-September to the end of November.

The terrain park groomer: he is 26 years old. Thinks he has a boring job, but does it for the love of skiing and the outdoors.

The waitress from Chile: she came on the G1 visa when in college, married and never went back.

 

The retired guy who worked at the Pentagon and now lives in Bozeman. He comes up skiing if there are less than two clouds in the sky, just because he can do it, and then on his way back home, he stops along the way and spend a few hours fly-fishing. He says he’s been selfish for the past two years, but he is planning to volunteer at Yellowstone starting this summer.

There is one thing easy to ignore, what it takes, behind the scene, for all of us to have a good time. Starting around 6:30 am the mountain comes alive with the march of the colorful workers. The first technicians wearing their green jackets are making the rounds of all the lifts on their snowmobiles ensuring everything function properly. Then the ski patrol guys, some accompanied by their dogs, show up wearing their red coats. Then around 8:00 am, the first lift operators are taking their position on the mountain wearing their black coats. Then comes the blue coats or lift tickets people. This all happens 3 hours before the first lift opens at 9:00 am. Then at 4:00 pm, when the lifts close, the machines take over the hill. The night is the domain of the groomers.

Thanks to all of you that make it happen day-in and day-out for all of us to have a good time.

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