Don’t give up on skiing yet.
Although a spate of sunny and warm weather has turned minds toward spring fun, there is still plenty of good skiing to be had.
Warmer weather means it’s actually (for once) advisable to sleep in.
Prime spring skiing time is generally between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. That’s because warmer daytime weather, combined with cold nights, percolates water through the snow. That, in turn, dissolves the bonds between the snow crystals, creating corn snow.
Skiers ride up Schweitzer Mountain’s Great Escape quad chair on Friday March 6, 2020. (Eli Francovich / The Spokesman-Review)
Freezing nighttime temperatures make the snow solid. Later in the day as it melts, it turns into a mushy mess.
There is a sweet spot, though. As it melts, but before it mushes, that snow takes on a velvety texture making for a joyous skiing experience.
In addition to the fun riding conditions, generally nicer weather means skiing in sun with views. For certain area resorts known for their fogginess, this can be a welcome change.
Finally, spring skiing means deals. All Spokane area resorts offer discounted 2020-21 season passes. Below are the basics.
For $139, you can buy Schweitzer Mountain’s spring fling pass. The pass allows you to ski now through April 12. If you purchase a 2020-21 pass, you can apply $99 from the spring fling pass to next season’s pass. For more information visit schweitzer.com/plan/spring-fling/.
Lookout Pass on the Idaho/Montana border offers discounted season passes through April 30. For an adult the pass costs $259 and that pass is good for skiing in March and April. For more information, visit skilookout.com/season-pass.
Silver Mountain also offers discounts on 2020-21 passes. Between now and May 5 an adult season pass costs $369, plus you can ski until the resort closes. Visit silvermt.com.
A 2020-21 49 Degrees North pass costs $399 for adults. Visit ski49n.com/tickets/season-passes.
Closer to home, Mt. Spokane offers a season pass for $419, plus skiing through the end of this season.
In addition to discounted passes, all area resorts host a number of spring-themed events, including pond skimming and the obligatory Hawaiian shirt day. Check area websites for more details.
On Saturday, Silver Mountain will host a Mardi Gras-themed day of skiing and boarding, including New Orleans drinks specials. Visit silvermt.com/Things-To-Do/Event-Calendar.
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