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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    28

    How's the ski mountaineering/summer skiing in Northern Idaho?

    I was looking at Sandpoint ID as a possible place to live, though I've never been. For summer skiing/big descents, it seems pretty mellow in that region, I only see a few 3000ft descents on my google maps analysis. Do you drive 90min up to BC for that stuff? Over to the Cabinet Range in MT? Does the snow stick around pretty well into the summer in the ID Selkirks?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Eastern WA
    Posts
    357
    Spend some time reading on panhandlebackcountry.com. This will answer your questions. 3000í descents are limited, but there are a few (which makes it that much more special). There is a mag who pulls off TAY locally, Iíll let him chime in with details.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Spokane/Schweitzer
    Posts
    5,158
    Quote Originally Posted by sharkk View Post
    I was looking at Sandpoint ID as a possible place to live, though I've never been. For summer skiing/big descents, it seems pretty mellow in that region, I only see a few 3000ft descents on my google maps analysis. Do you drive 90min up to BC for that stuff? Over to the Cabinet Range in MT? Does the snow stick around pretty well into the summer in the ID Selkirks?
    Not a lot of big descents or summer skiing real close to Sandpoint. Going north into BC or heading to the Cascades/volcanoes is a much better bet for bigger descents and summer snow. There's some stuff in the Cabinets but we're relatively low elevation with nothing over about 7,000' in the area. That definitely limits summer skiing.

    Bourbon makes a good suggestion the panhandlebackcountry.com website (provided BC.com doesn't make them change their name). Lots of good information there.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    369
    Sandpoint is cute, but there is limited backcountry skiing in general in northern Idaho, much less summer skiing.

    The Cabinets have a small glacier that is difficult to access. If you live in Sandpoint and are intent on summer turns your best bet is Logan Pass.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Location
    Montana
    Posts
    181
    lived in sandpoint for a short bit, town is meh. roll up the sidewalks at 5pm, might be your thing tho...

    schweitzer is decent resort skiing, higher moisture snow overall but definitely get some good pow days. not a lot of backcountry stuff, mostly side/slack country from the resort

    summer skiing? no, not really at all around there. canada is best bet, easy access to border. if yer serious about summer turns in the US regionally you'd be better off closer to glacier park

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Eastern WA
    Posts
    357
    Quote Originally Posted by cloud cult View Post
    Sandpoint is cute, but there is limited backcountry skiing in general in northern Idaho
    Please continue to spread this hot take!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    2,968
    That hot take happens to be true. There are a couple of backcountry options without driving tooo far from town, but judging from the number of trips we take to Canada, "pretty limited" is pretty accurate. Summer skiing is zero within about a 4 hour radius.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Eastern WA
    Posts
    357

    How's the ski mountaineering/summer skiing in Northern Idaho?

    Quote Originally Posted by jono View Post
    That hot take happens to be true. There are a couple of backcountry options without driving tooo far from town, but judging from the number of trips we take to Canada, "pretty limited" is pretty accurate. Summer skiing is zero within about a 4 hour radius.
    No I get it, the options are limited close to town. My response was to the generalization that there isnít much bc skiing in the panhandle. I guess my tolerance for driving to find good skiing is a bit higher. Totally agree on the ďsummerĒ skiing bit, but there is plenty of great skiing to be had well into June most years.

    Access to backcountry skiing in the panhandle isnít easy like in some other parts of the west, but the options are nearly endless. And youíll never see another soul out there

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    318
    Get a boat or bike for summer.


    Sent from my iPhone using TGR Forums

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2019
    Posts
    8
    from my experience the only summer skiing would be in Glacier NP but that's not exactly in your backyard...

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Posts
    47
    the place sucks in general, you should stay away

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Location
    Reno, NV
    Posts
    172
    Quote Originally Posted by white_wolf View Post
    the place sucks in general, you should stay away
    You come up with that all by yourself?

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    panhandle locdog
    Posts
    6,526
    With all the rain we're getting I'm wondering about winter skiing as well.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Spokane/Schweitzer
    Posts
    5,158
    Quote Originally Posted by The Artist Formerly Known as Leavenworth Skier View Post
    With all the rain we're getting I'm wondering about winter skiing as well.
    Eh, this is reasonably typical. November tends to be a wet, rainy month but will turn soon enough. Not sure we'll be skiing by Thanksgiving weekend but it should be soon. Lots of years where the week before Christmas is still pretty thin but then we get a series of storms through that dump and set the areas up for the holiday week. I'm not worried about it at this point.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    The Dirty E
    Posts
    778
    May be able to find something down around McCall, but that's a bit of a cruise.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Spokane/Schweitzer
    Posts
    5,158
    Quote Originally Posted by The Artist Formerly Known as Leavenworth Skier View Post
    With all the rain we're getting I'm wondering about winter skiing as well.
    FWIW, Schweitzer has picked up 4" today so far. It's coming...

    https://wcc.sc.egov.usda.gov/reportG...ue,TOBS::value

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    panhandle locdog
    Posts
    6,526
    Yeah I can see a snow line to about 3500í from my office window up at Schweitzer


    Sent from my iPhone using TGR Forums

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Inland NW
    Posts
    161
    Pick up a beater trail sled and your options for backcountry skiing around Sandpoint will greatly expand..

    I wouldn't move here for the summer skiing. Just a couple of snowfields that linger into August. I've been able to ski pow into June the last few years though?

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