Big Mountain Experience Karen Anderson, Senior Ski Specialist

"Aside from the huge ski area and variety of terrain, the thing that attracts skiers to Big Sky is how quiet it is on the slopes - lift lines here are often non-existent. Then of course there’s the snow, with the resort boasting an impressive record. The mountain village is compact, and the nearby town of Big Sky offers further variety of eating and entertainment options. Big Sky makes a great twin centre option with Jackson Hole, and I think combining the two resorts in one trip is a hard combination to beat."

Big Sky Ski Holidays

Big Sky in southern Montana is an exceptional ski destination with a well-deserved reputation for great snow, super-varied terrain, iconic scenery and no lift lines. The resort prides itself on its sense of endless space, airy panoramic vistas, high alpine landscapes, and a staggering 5,800 acres of terrain (60% is advanced or expert!), making it the 2nd biggest ski area in the United States. The Lone Peak tram rises almost vertically to the craggy pyramid-shaped summit of Lone Mountain, which at 11,166 feet towers over the surrounding wilderness. From here you can look out over Yellowstone National Park, and on a good day it's even possible to see the stunning Grand Teton Range over 80 miles away – home to Jackson Hole, Wyoming.

Big Sky is a remote destination resort with no huge urban centre close-by. This one fact alone makes the slopes quiet, the lift queues non-existent and ensures that the focus is on the individual rather than the masses. Expect a small compact mountain village where all of our featured lodging is ski-in/ski-out, and the focus is first and foremost on the quality and quantity of its ski product.

Skiing in Big Sky

You could visit Big Sky for a fortnight, and ski every day from first lift to last and still only just scratch the surface on what Big Sky has to offer. In terms of pure ski experience, Big Sky has an abundance of terrain that’s well-suited to every type of skier and rider. This is a big, big place – bigger even that the mighty Vail – with a massive 4,350ft vertical and 300+ trails on 4 connected mountains.

Beginners and novices start their ski careers from the mountain village in the learn to ski zone, before getting more adventurous off the Explorer Double and gently gliding down the wide open green trails back to the mountain village. After that it’s a ride to the summit of Andesite Mountain on Big Sky’s eight seat ‘Ramcharger 8’ chairlift - the first of its type in North America. Andesite offers a lovely variety of long, tree-lined groomers perfect for slow, lazy turns, and connects easily over to Spirit Mountain for more of the same.

Intermediates really have the choice of the whole of the lower and mid-level mountain in Big Sky with literally miles and miles of open, empty trails to shake, rattle and roll down. With four mountain peaks to conquer it’ll take a while, but finally you’ll be ready to ascend the tram to the summit of Lone Mountain with its 360 degree panoramic for the biggest and best – admire the view, take a picture, then lunge down the single black diamond inbounds Liberty Bowl onto Screaming Left through Shedhorn and out onto Middle Road for the long drop down into the main village – a quad-burner of a run that’ll have you sucking lung-fulls of oxygen as you contemplate a repeat performance.

One look at the Big Sky trail map will have all expert skiers and riders breaking out in a cold sweat as they anticipate what awaits! The trails off Lone Mountain are all painted black – there’s lots of trails here with an even deeper shade of black than most others you might have experienced. There’s so many double black diamonds options from the peak that some say on a powder day Lone Mountain can be seen to sparkle menacingly. It doesn’t ever disappoint, with lots to choose from including steep chutes, tight lines, gullies with rock bands, open powder faces, monster bumps, hike-to areas and couloirs. If you aim to ski big, then Ski Big Sky!

Getting to Big Sky

Ski Independence offer daily indirect flights from London to Bozeman with a variety of airlines, and we provide complete flexibility to choose the day of departure, holiday duration, choice of airline and cabin type. We have the freedom to build you the perfect holiday itinerary around the best flight options that suit you, and not around a product we’re committed to sell.

All of our holidays to Big Sky include a short 60 minute shared shuttle transfer from Bozeman airport, however the area is perhaps best explored with the flexibility of a self-drive car, SUV or minivan. We offer 'Gold' option car rental which includes all the mandatory taxes & fees, extra drive fees, fuel and ski rack. We can also offer vehicles with SatNav.

Important information
Season Late November–Mid April
Ski Area 5,800 acres
Annual Snowfall 33ft
Number of Lifts 36
Ski Range 6,800–11,166ft
Snow Making Capabilities 350 acres
Ski Shuttle Free service between Mountain village and Meadow village.
Blue Runs 15%
Red Runs 25%
Black Runs 60% (42% advanced and 18% expert)
Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Jan Feb Mar Apr May
Off-season Off-season Off-season Off-season Off-season On-season On-season On-season On-season On-season On-season Off-season
Distance from airports
Bozeman 60mins