The Ski Mountain
The Summit at Snoqualmie consists of four separate mountain areas – Summit West, Summit East, Summit Central, and Alpental, and together add up to a nice 1,944 skiable acres. Even though the summit elevation is only 5,420 feet, the average annual snowfall of 434 inches overrides the stigma of its low elevation. Each of the four mountain area caters to different types of skiers with differing terrain options, so any skier with a sense of adventure can find the opportunity to satisfy their needs.
The Mountain Experience
At a short 45 minutes from downtown Seattle, Snoqualmie draws mainly from three types of skiers – the day trippers who are a mix of once a year and first-time skiers trying out the sport, the more proficient who are warming up their ski legs for trips to further and higher elevation ski resorts, and a consistent group of locals who come out every weekend or on a designated weekday throughout the season and share the bond of having done so for years.
Summit at Snoqualmie’s Ski Terrain
• Beginner: Summit West is considered the best place to learn. Its dedicated first-timer program and solid corduroy make it easy for new skiers to progress within their comfort zone. The trail map shows a few advanced runs but in comparison to the rest of the Snoqualmie, these trails are easier and short as they transition quickly to very tame intermediate runs.
Current Snow Conditions
• Intermediate: All four of Snoqualmie’s peaks offer intermediate terrain, but Summit Central and Summit East provide the most options. From tree-lined cruisers to short yet substantial pitches, Central and East are well-balanced for the intermediate skier. Outback at Central, is a long, fast groomer good for carving or ducking in and out of the trees. At Summit East, ski Hidden Valley and take Revelation for long arcing turns across the wide trail and a small grove of trees you can bop through near the bottom.
• Advanced: Nearly all of Alpental is off-piste expert terrain and the entire upper mountain is for experts. Traversing across the ridge from Edelweiss lift, you’ll find the Alpental Back Bowls. With no marked or designated trails in the bowls you can carve your own path but beware of cliffs and rock beds. For a real challenge, try International, one of the steepest runs in the state. It’s a long, tough route that’s also a jump off point to the backcountry. Note: This area is closed on Mondays.
• Pro Tip: For chutes and trees, look to Summit East and Alpental. These areas are a freerider’s paradise. Silver Fir, a zone within Central, is known for long, fast runs. Both Silver Fir and Alpental get hit on powder days, and it’s not unheard of to see 400-500 people lined up at the Alpental lift after a storm has passed.
Around the Mountain
• Terrain Park: The park on Summit Central, with more than 70 features, is recognized by many as one of the best parks in Washington and therefore see its fair share of people. For a more natural terrain park, Blowdown on Summit East features tree stumps and other natural features creating boosty jumps and big kickers.
• Night Skiing: The mountain has terrain open from 9 am – 10 pm six days a week thanks to night skiing options at Summit West, Summit East and Alpental.