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“Crusty Snow”
Review of Bald Mountain

Bald Mountain
Ranked #2 of 11 things to do in Sun Valley
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed January 6, 2014

It's been another dry year in Idaho and thus there is very little natural snow at Bald Mountain. The machine-made snow was a little too crusty and over-groomed. For such sky high lift ticket prices, we were hoping for slightly better groomed snow conditions. Also, if you ski down to the lift on the back side of the mountain and want to take a shuttle around to the front, you have to ride a city bus and it takes 20-30 minutes to make a 5 min trip. It would be nice if they had shuttles within the resort.

Thank lindsay_D2007
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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68 - 72 of 116 reviews

Reviewed January 2, 2014

We are New Yorkers, and have been out west skiing only twice before (Jackson Hole and Breckenridge). The best thing about Bald Mountain is that there are only a small number of snowboarders and essentially no beginners. The nearby Dollar Mountain has a terrain park and easier slopes. The green trails at Bald feel like blue trails, and the blue trails are similar to typical black trails elsewhere.

When you read about the history of Sun Valley, arguably the first ski resort in the US, the location was chosen for its ideal conditions, one of them being very little wind. For the entire week of our trip, the wind hardly got higher than 5 mph. It was quite remarkable (or we were extremely lucky).

One negative was that there was no natural snow during the New Years Day week. The man made snow was icy, similar to the east coast slopes we are used to. Many of the slopes were not open, and locals told us that the mountain seems much more crowded than usual. However, there were still no lines at the lifts.

We also liked the fact that the elevation at the base was only about 6000 ft, similar to Jackson Hole. We vowed to never go back to Breckenridge due to its high elevation (over 9000 ft). We didn't need a day to get used to the elevation at Sun Valley.

We prefer to stay at a ski-in-and-out lodge, but the drop off area and parking at Bald were very convenient. We stayed at the Cottonwood condos operated by the Sun Valley Lodge, which was reasonably priced and very nice.

We didn't find much to do outside of downhill skiing at Sun Valley, and restaurants in nearby Ketchum were mediocre at best. The nordic center was closed due to lack of snow, and the bowling alley at the lodge was too crowded. One exception was a guided fly fishing trip through Silver Creek Outfitters, which was excellent. It was hard to believe that a beginner could catch fish in the middle of winter, but the river/stream was beautiful, the weather pleasant, and the guide was outstanding.

2  Thank nyoperafans
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 27, 2013

The Sun Valley Company definitely knows how to take care of its customers. We are life-long skiers and our experience at Sun Valley is always top-notch. From the moment you drive up, they help you unload your gear, answer questions, offer a cart for hauling skiis, etc. I have never stood in line more than 3 minutes on any lift and the lifts virtually never break down or stall. Several years ago, new lodges were built at River Run, Warm Springs, Seattle Ridge and Dollar Mtn (as well as new lodge at Golf Course/Cross Country Ski area which was sadly not open this Christmas due to lack of snow) - they are above the top beautiful with wonderful food and beverage to match. It's hard for me to ski elsewhere!

2  Thank MeAgain8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 23, 2013

I don't know if this weeks conditions are typical of the area, but all that was open was thin strips of all man made snow which as usual with this was quite icy. They have some modern lifts in place and the snow making is petty comprehensive on all the main runs. Small area though and definitely not enough to keep an experienced skier happy for more than a few hours. I skied everything that was open in a few hours and am not a fan of going up and down the same bit if snow dozens of times in a day.

2  Thank Skinut79
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 17, 2013

OK, thats a tall order. Many people from all over the ski world have said just that! Big Mountain, fast steep runs that have continuous fall- lines, very smooth grooming, very consistant. A backcountry thats much larger than the in-bounds and its US Forest Service Owned so its open to the public...be cautious though! Big Powder can get ya.

1  Thank bkskiispow
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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