Alpental and Summit At Snoqualmie Ski Resort
Alpental and Summit At Snoqualmie may technically be one resort, but they are actually two separate ski areas separated by just a few hundred miles. Both resorts are easily reached via Interstate 90 within an hour of Seattle.
Snoqualmie is more of a hill than a mountain. The highest point is 1,100 feet. This is comparable with resorts in flatter areas, and as low as 765 in major cities.
Three areas make up the Summit at Snoqualmie. They are linked by a series of traverses: Summit West, Summit Central. And Summit East. (Nearby Alpental has been reviewed separately.) This ticket includes Summit West, Summit Central, and Summit East. However, it is not connected with the rest. Each area offers unique terrain experiences.
Summit West is vertically the narrowest area of the resort. It is primarily used as a giant bunny hill. There are also a few black runs.
Summit Central, the resort’s middle area, is mainly composed of runs that begin with advanced pitches and then mellow out. Some glades in this area have very technical, advanced terrain, despite the fact that they are only a short distance from the ground. Snoqualmie also has two terrain parks in this area, offering engaging features from small to large. Bunny hills can also be found in lower mountain areas.
Summit East is closed on weekdays and for night skiing. This area has the best terrain and longest vertical drops, as well as isolated runs. There are a few challenging mogul runs on the East side, as well as intermediate and beginner slopes. Hidden Valley is the resort’s only backside and provides the only escape from Interstate 90 in Snoqualmie.
Snoqualmie has two fast, high-speed lifts in Central and slow, fixed grip lifts all over the resort. Because of the resort’s small footprint, lift rides don’t last very long. On weekends and weeknights, however, there can be long lines, especially at the Central high speed chairs. Safety bars are missing from multiple chairlifts, which is surprising considering the resort’s focus on families. Although it’s easy to navigate Snoqualmie due to the good signage and the small footprint, some may need to traverse the large footprint.
Each winter, the Summit experiences remarkable snow accumulations. It is often ranked among the top U.S. resorts. However, the snow is not always pleasant to ski in. It is located at an extremely low elevation and has some of the most wet, heavy conditions we have ever seen. Many people will prefer non-powder days over powder ones. The season’s temperatures can fluctuate between freezing and below, and the early-season months often see rain. Fog can be found throughout winter. However, the sky tends to clear in the spring months.
Snoqualmie is a mountain that is often day-tripped. This means you wouldn’t expect the best on-mountain facilities. There are decent options throughout the resort. There is a large, modern lodge at Silver Fir’s base, as well as indoor/outdoor cafeterias at the East and Central bases. On busy days, both the Central and West lodges can fill up quickly so the East base lodge is often the best option for finding a place to sit.
Snoqualmie’s night-skiing operation is one of its strongest assets. Summit Central is open six nights a semaine until 10pm during peak season. Summit West remains open late four nights per week. The Terrain of all abilities ratings remains open at night making it a great experience for anyone who visits the mountain during the day.
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