I realized a long ago that the heart and sole of American Skiing really lives at these small to mid sized authentic independent hidden gems that most people have never heard about. In 2017 when Altera announced their coming out party and starting merging with everybody, we saw everything was changing. It was like musical chairs and we started thinking if there was going to be a new kind of pass, why can’t it be us? Why can’t we do it?
Quote from Doug Fish, founder of Indy Pass. An excerpt from Indy Pass podcast
I heard this quote from Doug Fish, the founder of Indy Pass, on The Storm Skiing podcast. I was riveted, this is one of the answers to RV based resort skiing. In doing research on resorts, I quickly discovered that most Mega resorts are not friendly to RV’s. Understandably, they want you to rent a hotel room, a condo, or a luxury home on the mountain. Better yet, buy a condo or a house. There is no to little money in renting out spaces in a parking lot for the Mega resort.
I live in the Midwest but have a long history of skiing the Rocky Mountains. I lived in ski resorts for a couple winter seasons in my youth and have vacationed at the Mega resorts all my life. My son lives in Bozeman so it is a natural for me to explore what resorts were on the Indy Pass in Montana and Idaho. As Doug said in the podcast, I never heard of these places… Tamarack, Brundage, 49 Degrees, Lost Trail Powder Mountain, Silver Mountain..... But I lived in Red Lodge one winter season and can say it is a great mountain to ski. Sure, it isn’t the terrain of Jackson, but you won’t find $1,000 per night lodging at the Four Seasons there either. In fact, you can park an RV in their parking lot for free!
So I went to the web sites of these mystery places to see what they offered. An intermediate groomer place that gets less than 200 inches per year has no appeal to me. What did I find? 300 inches+, 1,800 to 2,500+ vertical and most allow an RV to park overnight right in their parking lot. Pinch me, this seems too good to be true. In February or March, here is the trip I will be taking. 3-4 nights per location. 2-3 days skiing at the resort, an off day for cross country skiing or snowshoeing and sightseeing.
I will write up the trip and provide a review of each resort. Can’t wait!
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P.S. In this COVID season the smaller less crowded resort seems to have more appeal than ever.