Idaho Ski Resorts Are a Real Bargain

After eight days on the slopes of Idaho Ski Resorts, I’ve found the state where a value-hunter like me can rejoice at the prices. I didn’t think there were still ski hills around where the local ski bums outnumbered lawyers and hedge fund managers anymore. But if you ski Idaho, you’ll find mellow mountains with no lift lines and people who are more concerned about snow conditions than how their outfit looks.

I’ve talked before about the high cost of skiing in the USA and how it’s often cheaper to ski in Europe than it is in America. The folks at Ski Idaho begged to differ though and said, “Not here! Come see for yourself.”

So I did—bigtime. I skied eight days out of nine, hitting a wide range of mountains in three distinct areas of the state. The most expensive lift ticket I encountered was $75 and one place dipped as low as $20. The last time I saw prices like that I had a full head of hair.

It was refreshing, fun, and a serious workout since I never had to wait in line even once. Up the lift, swish down the slopes, repeat. Then when it was time to grab a bite to eat or drink a beer, those prices were refreshing too.

Here’s a rundown of my road trip adventure, with details on each option you can use for making your own future Idaho ski resort plans.



My skiing adventure started out at the biggest resort I would visit on the trip: Tamarack. This one 90 miles north of Boise was limping along for years before a new owner with big bucks took over in late 2018. A residential ski village is going in now and more permanent buildings are replacing some domed structures for restaurants and bars that will disappear during the 2020 summer. I did have a fine meal and some good local brews at Seven Devils Pub, but the upgrades will allow continuous expansion with more lifts and trails. This is the only place I visited that had a full-blown lodge hotel on site. So at Tamarack you can stay put after your last run. The skiing at Tamarack Resort is downright great, with a wide variety of runs I didn’t get tired of over the two days I checked it out, including some really long blue trails that had my legs screaming out for a break by the time I made it to the bottom. There are also some beginner runs that are long and gentle, with good scenery. Seven lifts serve 50 runs and three terrain parks for snowboarders. There’s glade skiing, some challenging black diamond slopes, and a beginners’ area.

A full rental shop with regular skis and demo options is run by a former racer. My small group also went out on some fat tire mountain bikes through the snow, which was big fun.

This is the most expensive Idaho option besides famous destination resort Sun Valley, but that word is a relative term in this region. Compared to most places this size in the Rocky Mountains or Vermont, it’s a bargain. Walk-up lift tickets are $75 adult, $49 teens, and $34 for kids 7-11 (6 and under are free). Rental packages run from $25 to $61 per day. They sell a terrific Boundless year-round pass that’s a dream for locals who love to mountain bike too. Kids and teens ski free in March. See more at

For the full story visit:

The Village at
Tamarack ResidenceS

Tamarack, Idaho
O: 208 325 1001


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