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Skiing in WA State

Redmond, Washington
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79 posts
49 reviews
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Skiing in WA State

Recently moved to Redmond, Washington, and are planning our winter holidays.

Can you recommend best options for family ski holiday in WA State, not more that 1-2 hours drive from Seattle , which is appropriate both for good skiers and for beginners ?

We would like to rent a condominium or a house, and to be as close to the slopes as possible.

Vancouver, Canada
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27,932 posts
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1. Re: Skiing in WA State

The only WA mtn I've skiied is Mt. Baker, and I thought it was pretty good. However, the accommodation isn't great for Baker. I'm pretty sure you have to stay in nearby Glacier and drive up to the hill. I always just drove down for the day.

Delavan, Illinois
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2. Re: Skiing in WA State

Check out these places that provide reveiws:

http://www.skiresortguide.com/statemap.cfm/wa

http://goski.com/Washington/Resorts

www.onthesnow.com/washington/skireport.html

Or look up IslandGrl on these forums and ask her. She's a skier and she lives in Seattle.

Washington
Destination Expert
for Seattle, Family Travel
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3. Re: Skiing in WA State

Thanks for the comment turkce_bilmiy.

Anagard did post to the WA state forum, so I responded there. I pasted my response below in case others search here for the information>

Hi Anagard,

I have skied since I was 5 and a strong proponent of family skiing/boarding. We started our kids as toddlers, and now are all avid skiers and boarders. I have skied and stayed at most resorts throughout the Pacific Northwest and much of the US. I can't wait to see the snow fly! (Check out the Whistler web-cams, Woo-hoo!)

You have been given good advice, but I have additional recommendations. Snoqualmie Pass, Stevens, and Crystal Mountain are the main "local" ski areas that meet your requirements. In general, I have found that locals are very fond of a certain ski area - often depending on where they started skiing. Or, for example, where they travel from. For example, Stevens is very popular with people who live in the northern end of Seattle, because it is closer. Crystal, is more convenient for those in the southern areas. Snoqualmie is often popular with people who want to be on the slopes in 45 minutes or so, are beginners, or enjoy night skiing. We have friends who love, love Stevens. Our family are die-hard Crystal Mountain fans. I am not as fond of Stevens, and the road to Stevens gives me the "willies". I guess I have seen far too many accidents over the years with too-fast for conditions knuckle headed drivers. They have improved the road, but...

So now that you know my bias, I would strongly advocate you consider Crystal Mountain. It is good for both beginners and experts, and has some very challenging terrain. Crystal is well-managed and continues to expand it's terrain for a 1st class skier experience. I have had some of the best ski days ever at Crystal - the rare experience with the sun out and Mt Rainier glistening in the distance. Yes, most people day ski at Crystal, but there are accommodations for those who want to tuck in for a few days.

One of my all-time favorite places to stay is the Alta Crystal Resort. It is tucked into the trees at the base of the road to Crystal. The downside is you will have to drive a couple miles to the base of the ski area. The upside is it is a perfect low-key, family resort with just the right amenities. We used to stay there when our boys were little for a close-to home getaway. Take a look, you won't be disappointed.

http://www.altacrystalresort.com/

Another advantage of Crystal is that the lift ticket pricing for children under 10 is amazing. I believe for the 2011-2012 season daily lift tickets for kids 10 and under is will be just $5 (it used to be free!). Crystal's website looks like it is down this morning, so I can't confirm that for you, but do check back. Stevens and Snoqualmie Pass's ticket pricing has a child ticket at 6 and under, then youth from 7-12 is significantly higher.

If you want to stay right at the ski-resort base, yes there are condo rentals, and that too, is not a bad option. Know though that the quality of the condo units varies widely. I don't have a specific rec for you, as we have only stayed with friends.

And lastly, I have not commented on Mt. Baker. It is known for it's epic snow, but, I would not recommend it at this point for your young family because of the travel distance, and limited services close to the mountain. If, at sometime you want to travel a little farther for destination skiing, I have additional recommendations.

Please feel free to ask any other questions. Welcome to the Northwest.

Edited: 30 October 2011, 12:47
4. Re: Skiing in WA State

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