Big Sky

Big Sky

Overall Rating

Big Sky

Big Sky4/523
Big Sky4 out of 5 based on 23 reviews
  • Recommend
    83%
  • Would Revisit
    87%

Big Sky - Reviews

Big Sky - Reviews

Reckless tourist skiers, no signage, hosts or patrol around

Tom Quitasol
31/03/2021
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Advanced
  • Rider Age
    36-50
  • Month Visited:
    March
  • Admin Rating
    3

Reckless tourist skiers, no signage, hosts or patrol around

Tom Quitasol
31/03/2021
Nary a mountain host in sight to direct skiers, very few reminders of directions, slow zones, very little to no ski patrol visible on runs to remind people to ski in control. Two out of four people in my party were run over from behind by skiers on the same day. Second time was on a run that probably spanned five semis. An impact that broke my kids helmet. Of course a ticket says skiing is dangerous, I understand that part. However the downhill skier always has priority and any of us has an obligation to ski in control. In twenty years of skiing every week, I have never been hit by another skier. My reckless tourist comment is coming from a visitor! Reminders on lifts about safety or slow zones or ‘ski in control’ across runs help eliminate any confusion and this type of garbage skiing by visitors. Big Sky seems more concerned with maintaining the aesthetics than skier safety. I can’t recall even seeing a host or patroller out actually patrolling. Lots of terrain, just very little focus on maintaining skier safety on it.

Local Advice

Tyler
16/01/2021
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Snowboarder
  • Rider Level
    Expert
  • Rider Age
    18-35
  • Month Visited:
    January
  • Admin Rating
    1

Local Advice

Tyler
16/01/2021
Easily one of the worst resorts I’ve ever ridden. Horrible snow, massive lines, and the fact that every single run seems to funnel down to a flat cat track just ruined the experience for me. Take my advice and just go to Jackson hole or Targhee.

Ski trip

Merrilee Kick
24/02/2020
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    N/A
  • Rider Level
    N/A
  • Rider Age
    N/A
  • Month Visited:
    February
  • Admin Rating
    1

Ski trip

Merrilee Kick
24/02/2020
No lines. Open terrain, great snow, beautiful views. The town of Big Sky is small but has many bars and restaurants. Bucks, and Riverhouse, Michaelangelo, and Lotus Pad are all awesome

Tam fam

Shaun Bevan
31/01/2020
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Snowboarder
  • Rider Level
    Advanced
  • Rider Age
    36-50
  • Month Visited:
    January
  • Admin Rating
    1

Tam fam

Shaun Bevan
31/01/2020
Hasn’t snowed in a while or snow was gone. Waaaay overpriced

On the Rise

Mitchell
21/10/2019
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Expert
  • Rider Age
    51-70
  • Month Visited:
    February
  • Admin Rating
    4

On the Rise

Mitchell
21/10/2019
Growth at Big Sky is off the charts. Nearby Bozeman is touted as the fastest growing Micropolitan area in America. The ski areas is in the midst of a ten-year strategic plan to improve lifts, improve services and increase terrain. Over the last ten years, Big Sky absorbed the ski infrastructure at adjacent Spanish Peaks and Moonlight Basin. Real estate development in both areas is on record pace. (Yellowstone Club skiing remains private but its growth is having so many positive spin off effects on the entire Big Sky area. )

Boyne has added two new high speed lifts and one speedy fixed grip lift in the past three years. By repurposing one old high speed lift, they've actually improved four lifts total. If they accomplish their 2025 strategic plan they will be updating/adding at least six more lifts, including a new gondola and a small capacity increase for the tram.

Tram lines can approach an hour (or slightly more) on nice days, but the limited capacity results in fantastic condition of the slopes at the top of Lone Peak. More than half the tram riders ski down overrated Liberty Bowl; this leaves dozens of other runs for everyone.

Marx and Lenin are two of the best double diamond trails anywhere. Steep enough to get the heart racing, but wide enough to minimize risk and fear. Big C may not be the toughest in-bounds run in the country, but you'll have a hard time finding anything as challenging with as much duration. Tram lines are much lighter on cloudy days.

Even on the busiest days, you can lap the Challenger lift and access incredible terrain without every standing in line. If you want to rack up vertical feet, lap the bowl six-seat Powder Seeker. A very strong skier could get close to 10,000 vertical feet per hour. Lines are also very rare on this lift.

The 2025 plan also envisions an increase in acreage from 5,800 to almost 10,000 acres. I believe Big Sky intends to capture the title of biggest vertical and most acreage in all of the U.S.

Big Sky uses 270 degrees of the mountain. Pay attention to the sun. North facing slopes are generally the best. Despite its vast size, the mountain is easy to navigate for skiers at every level. The only insider tip I can share is that when the crowds go high on powder days, some of the best stashes can be find on the east and north diamond slopes of Andesite. Snake Pit and Bears Lair are two that come to mind.

The base area remains modest. Even with the planned development, Big Sky will never be like Aspen, Vail, Park City or Breckenridge with a great town at the base of the mountain. However, in the town center, less than 10 miles from the base, a great resort community and infrastructure is rapidly emerging. New shops and restaurants are opening every year. There is a new hospital, upscale grocery and next to come will be an indoor year-round rec center to compliment the rodeo stadium, bandstand and ice rink nearby.

The main base lodge is subpar, but functional. It is being renovated as we speak.

Distance to airport is relatively modest, but the canyon drive is not fun in bad weather. Big Sky skiing is expensive. Lodging is expensive, but because of all the second homes there, prices on AirBnB seem to be dropping significantly.

Enjoy Big Sky.

Over Rated & Ostentatious

18/09/2019

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  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Expert
  • Rider Age
    36-50
  • Month Visited:
    February
  • Admin Rating
    5

Over Rated & Ostentatious

18/09/2019
Extra wide seats on the new Ramcharger lift
Part of the wide expanse of Big Sky
A snowy day at Yellowstone National Park
The snow was a bit light on
The main village is mostly made up of hotel buildings
Maybe we’d have enjoyed Big Sky more if we hadn’t visited Big Sky between Snowbowl, a low key no-frills ski area that’s great for ski bum powder hounds, and Jackson Hole which has soooo much more going for it than Big Sky. And maybe we’d have enjoyed it more without the resort’s arrogant and ridiculous mottos. Despite all the wank associated with their slogans such as “Biggest Skiing in America” (even though they’re not the biggest), “Best Chairlift in the World” (with its extra wide seats for fat bottoms), and “the most technologically advanced chairlift network” (despite various antique chairs and the resort being in the dark ages because they don’t even have RFID lift tickets - ha!), it is undeniably a great resort but perhaps just not as phenomenal as the marketing BS portrays.

Big Sky Resort has some amazing strengths and it’s easy to see why some people love the place, but it also has some marked cons, some of which are summarised on the Big Sky overview page.

It was really light on for snow, despite other ski resorts in the region having a substantial base, and some of the groomers had shaley pebbles on them that hadn’t been sifted out. Despite the lean snow, waits for the tram were one hour! I’d hate to see the queue on a powder day! Some amazing terrain, but you’d need the patience of a saint to ride much of it.

The poor service of the resort staff was also a stand out feature. Many of the resort staff were so laid back that they were nearly asleep. As examples, we’d ask for directions and get greeted with a dumb stare, and we went into the Base Camp activity centre (which had a sign regarding Yellowstone tours) to ask about tours to Yellowstone and the girl behind the counter was either stoned or really slow. She said she didn’t know of any Yellowstone tours and perhaps we should try googling it (so helpful!). On the flipside, we met a fantastic bar man in the Carabiner who excelled at service.

We went onto Jackson Hole a week later, and despite the crowds (it’s busy for a good reason), the superiority of Jackson Hole just blew Big Sky out of the sky.

Check out the USA ski resort ratings page to see how we score Big Sky against other western ski resorts.

Lift ops!

Ronnie
21/03/2019
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Snowboarder
  • Rider Level
    Expert
  • Rider Age
    18-35
  • Month Visited:
    March
  • Admin Rating
    2

Lift ops!

Ronnie
21/03/2019
My friends and I were in town the first week of March from Tahoe. We are ikon holders. Mountain was great and we were received much better than a lot of other mountains on the pass. Specifically. Seth, the guy with the busted arm running the bottom of the swifty chair was awesome!!! We work at a mountain here in Tahoe and wanted to let him know how much we appreciate his hard work and friendliness even through the increased crowds

Big Sky

Dirk
19/02/2019
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Advanced
  • Rider Age
    51-70
  • Month Visited:
    December
  • Admin Rating
    2

Big Sky

Dirk
19/02/2019
I live in Montana and ski Big Sky at least 3-10 days a year. Big Sky is probably the best skiing in the US. 5900+ skiable acres with small crowds. All levels of difficulty. Nightlife is just ok. Lodging is just ok. You can find better deals for lodging if look for condos, ABNB or VRBO.

Big Sky

Dirk
12/11/2018
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Advanced
  • Rider Age
    51-70
  • Month Visited:
    January
  • Admin Rating
    2

Big Sky

Dirk
12/11/2018
A lot of variety with a wide range of difficulty. You can go from extreme to green and anywhere in between. Fast lifts and low crowds. This is one of my local hills. When you have this close to your backyard, it's hard to justify going anywhere else.

Uprofessional operations

Richard Stoltzfus
03/12/2017
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Expert
  • Rider Age
    51-70
  • Month Visited:
    November
  • Admin Rating
    2

Uprofessional operations

Richard Stoltzfus
03/12/2017
On Wednesday November 29 2017 I loaded on the Challenger Lift at 3:25 PM The lift stopped for a long time then started moving very slowly and stopped several more times. When I unloaded it was about an hour later. During this time nobody came by to inform us of what the problem was or when we would be getting off the lift. We got very cold. The attitude of the workers was the worst part, nobody offered any regret for our situation. By the time I got off the mountain I was very cold and stiff and it was almost dark. The next morning I stopped by the skier services building to inform them of the situation and was told to go to the [email protected] website and write a review. When I visited the site I found many complaints but not many solutions. This is the most unprofessional operation I have ever seen in my 44 years of skiing.
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