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August 19, 2007

More Reasons to Love Big Sky

Big Sky is adding more lift capacity and acres to the largest resort in the country. Not like there is ever a line at Big Sky but the place keeps getting bigger and better.

BIG SKY, Mont. — Big Sky continues to prove itself as an industry leader in providing the most lift accessible terrain and uncrowded slopes with the introduction of Dakota Lift. The triple chair will improve access to Bavarian Forest and the recently opened 212 acres of Dakota Territories adding more capacity to the biggest skiing in America.

Big Sky has long focused on keeping lift capacity comfortably higher than the demand, now boasting an uphill lift capacity of 25,000 riders per hour with an average of 2,000 skiers and riders per day. Big Sky will offer 3,812 acres of skiable terrain accessed by 21 lifts and Lone Peak Passholders have access to over 5,500 acres.

The Dakota lift is located on the south face of Lone Mountain below Liberty Bowl. The fixed-grip lift will load below the Hippy Highway and the top station is located near Gate 2 of Bavarian Forest. The Dakota lift is 3,100 feet long and has a vertical rise of 1,210 feet. The lift ride time will be eight minutes.

Dakota Territories is primarily open bowl skiing at an intermediate angle. The run out includes well-spaced, natural glades that border Bavarian Forest, which offers endless variations of black diamond glades through the trees that are both natural and thinned. Both runs contain plenty of natural rollers and kickers before reaching the bottom.

The lift is the first half of a two-lift system providing a second access point to terrain on Lone Peak, currently being serviced by the Lone Peak Tram. The second lift, planned for construction next year will take skiers up to the Yeti Traverse accessing Big Sky’s famous wide-open, steep, above tree-line runs like Marx, Lenin and the Dictator Chutes.

“This is a skier’s mountain first and foremost,” said Big Sky Resort General Manager, Taylor Middleton. “Skiers have flocked from across the world for the massive terrain off the Lone Peak Tram. Our new Dakota lift just makes America’s Biggest Skiing even bigger.”

Every year, I struggle when the ski magazines don't have Big Sky among the top resorts in the country. The place is massive, offers every single type of run there is including some of the best double black skiing in the country. Cliffs. Groomers. A tram. A Gondola.

If you have not been there or are sick of the outlandish prices at Vail and Aspen, take a trip to Montana. Big Sky would be my favorite place to ski if it wasn't so far from Arizona. I am a driver, not a flyer, so Big Sky is just out of range unless I am vacationing in Montana at my Mom's (which I am planning to do this winter).

Posted by Justin at August 19, 2007 02:05 PM


Let them spend their time and effort promoting other mountains. After just a few days at the end of the season last year at Big Sky, I won't be fooled. Now to make it out there this season at the height of the season.

Posted by: Oft-piste at August 22, 2007 10:28 AM