We are not highly experienced skiers, so forgive me for not being able to draw detailed comparisons to Colorado or Utah. We have skied some in California, and in previous lives, a bit outside of California. So just know that. But, if you are like us and looking for some good family fun, Big Sky is worth a visit for sure!
The first thing we were struck by was how friendly everyone was…the employees of the resort as well as the other visitors. I’m not saying people aren’t friendly other places, but we commented many times at the wonderful atmosphere at Big Sky. The people who work there were so helpful…when I was carrying skis up the stairs (before ski valet), an employee offered to carry my skis for me. I didn’t let him because I am too proud! My husband said, “why didn’t you let him?” Apparently I looked like I was struggling! Haha!
The other skiers were nice too. There was no pretense…this was not Hollywood on a hill like some other resorts (so I’ve heard). The rumor is that “old money” skis at Big Sky…I don’t know about that because I didn’t go around and look at people’s money. But we made friends and chatted with other families everywhere we went. And they all said the same thing…Big Sky is special…don’t tell anyone! (oops!)
As I mentioned, we are not professional skiers. Since our trip was short, we didn’t sign our kids up for ski school or any type of lessons. So this was our first true family skiing vacation. What a perfect location! Ramcharger and Swift Current (“Swifty”) quads were our starting point given where we stayed and from there, we had so many options for green and blue runs. While we did wait in lines at the base of the mountain, the most we waited was 10 minutes or so. Maybe it was the single-digit temperatures, but others said that Big Sky is so spread out that it’s known for shorter lines. Once we got to the top of these quads (up 1,300 feet for Swifty), we had SO MANY options…the crowds dispersed and the runs were SO open. After skiing in California during the same holiday week last year, I was shocked by how much space and quiet we had for just our family.
Our favorite green runs were off of Southern Comfort lift on the back side of the mountain. We could traverse and practice without worrying about people “taking us out”. Here is a photo from the line at Southern Comfort chairlift.
There are so many other places to ski in the resort. We only scratched the surface! I see now why people can go there for a week vacation because there is always somewhere new to go. Here is a link to the interactive map to check it out…but remember, don’t tell anyone!