Lifestyle

Why Spring Is A Terrific Time To Visit Montana’s Big Sky Resort


No wonder why skiers flock to Montana’s Big Sky Resort year after year. The snow is downright plentiful, as the resort sees an average annual snowfall of about 400 inches. And since Big Sky opens on Thanksgiving Day and closes the season mid-April, it’s easy to schedule in world-class skiing when your schedule permits. Last but not least: there’s a staggering 5,850 acres of skiable terrain – 2,300 of which are suitable for beginners and intermediate-level skiers – spread across four mountains.

The issue? How popular the resort is, especially in the peak winter months from December through February (imagine steep hotel rates, long lift lines, and packed restaurants). So here’s a travel tip: March and April are also sublime times to visit. You’ll still enjoy ample snow, along with those coveted bluebird days, and everything else, from accommodations to the slopes, is more affordable and accessible as well. Plus: thanks to Big Sky 2025, an ambitious 10-year capital plan transforming the resort into a top-tier destination that appeals to travelers all year long, it’s even easier to make a case for a visit right now.

Since one of Big Sky 2025’s key goals is improving the overall alpine experience (shorter queues, increased uphill capacity), the resort unveiled Ramcharger 8 (North America’s first eight-seat chairlift) in November 2018 and Swift Current 6 on opening day this season. In addition to being extremely fast and technologically advanced, both lifts were engineered with protective weatherproof bubbles and wide heated seats for maximum comfort. And for Big Sky 2025’s final chapter, visitors can look forward to a massive base-to-summit lift network comprised of a two-stage gondola and tram.

Accommodations, too, are more inviting than ever. As the resort’s top ski-in, ski-out lodging, Summit Hotel wrapped a spiffy renovation last December with the 213 guest rooms now sporting a crisp palette of greys and blues, and subtle nods to its breathtaking natural setting. Carabiner Lounge’s spacious patio was also refreshed, further solidifying its status as one of Big Sky’s most popular après spots. And nearby, Huntley Lodge is in the midst of a comprehensive renovation. The 130 rooms are finished, while the restaurants and common spaces will be completed in the future. But if a luxurious five-star stay is what you’re after, consider the newly-opened Montage Big Sky or One&Only Moonlight Basin, slated to open in 2024.

While there’s plenty of new experiences at Big Sky at the moment and leading up to 2025, it’s nice to see some things have remained the same. The vibe is still wonderfully chill compared to other popular (read: crowded) American ski resorts like Vail and Park City Mountain, and there’s no shortage of ways to spend time at Big Sky if skiing isn’t your thing. (I highly recommend snowshoeing, a terrific way to take in the breakthtaking landscape in relative solitude, with one of the resort’s certified instructors.) And though eating and drinking well come easily here with lots of enticing options, can’t-miss meals include the sky-high, champagne-soaked lunches at Everett’s 8800, and downright enchanting Sleigh Ride Dinners at Lone Mountain Ranch.



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