Sun Valley Resort’s Bald Mountain—called “Baldy” by the locals—has a well-earned reputation as a fast, steep mountain with varied terrain that can challenge any skier. Whether you’re into big mountain groomers or powder-packed glades, Sun Valley delivers.
One thing you won’t get at Sun Valley is lift lines. With an uphill lift capacity of 21,580 skiers per hour and an average of only 3,500 skiers per day, queues are a rare sight. We hope your legs are ready for these runs! Here are some of our favorites.
If you’re looking for the best place to start your day on Baldy, follow the locals to Seattle Ridge. Seattle Ridge, a north-facing slope, is full of perfectly graded, green-rated slopes that help warm up your legs for the day ahead. Named after local Olympians, Seattle Ridge's slopes each have a distinct character and is worth skiing or riding at least once. Stop in the Seattle Ridge Day Lodge for a perfect mountain view and a cup of hot chocolate before exploring the rest of the resort.
Perfect For: Beginners, or a morning warm-up Must Ski: Gretchen’s Gold For a Challenge: Fire Trail, an often mogul-filled double-black diamond through the forest
Lookout is the main area of Baldy, accessible by both the Lookout Express and the Roundhouse Gondola. This area offers mainly blue-rated trails, with the opportunity to peel off onto mogul runs or onto well groomed—but steep—side trails. Lookout can be windy, so it’s best to ski it before noon when the corduroy is fresh and the lines are clean.
Perfect For: Wide turns and sweeping views Must Ski: Christmas Ridge to Upper and Lower Canyon For a Challenge: Upper, Mid, and Lower Holiday, an epically long mogul run with bumps the size of Volkswagens
At the northern end of Baldy lies Warm Springs, an area adored for its long runs and afternoon sun. Warm Springs is serviced primarily from the Challenger lift at the Warm Springs Day Lodge, but can be easily reached from anywhere on the mountain. Warm Springs has it all: beginner terrain, intermediate runs, and leg-busting black diamonds. No trip to Sun Valley is complete without a top-to-bottom run down the 3,300 vertical feet of Upper, Mid, and Lower Warm Springs—it’s known as one of the best ski runs in the United States.
Perfect For: All levels, especially in the afternoon Must Ski: Upper, Mid, and Lower Warm Springs For a Challenge: Limelight, a run so steep that the grooming machines have to winch themselves in to groom it
Sun Valley’s lift-serviced bowls are so beloved that the town goes into mourning when they close for the season. The bowls range in difficulty from blue-rated to black diamond, and in length from short to almost impossibly long. Although the bowls aren’t groomed, don’t worry about your skill level in the loose powder. Start at Sigi’s Bowl, which provides plenty of bailout options onto groomed Broadway Face, then make your way north along the ridge as you get more confident. You can access the bowls from the Seattle Ridge area’s Mayday lift.
Perfect For: Powder days, spring corn skiing and riding Must Ski: Kaitlyn’s Bowl For a Challenge: When the conditions are right, there is no better place to be on the mountain than the ultra-long, super challenging Easter Bowl
You won’t find Frenchman’s unless you are looking for it, which is exactly the reason you should look for it. Generally quiet and less tracked than other parts of the mountain, Frenchman’s is the perfect place to find stashes of hidden powder and enjoy short but sweet runs. Frenchman’s is especially delightful on a windy day, as it is tucked down in a protected canyon.
Perfect For: Quiet runs Must Ski: Graduate For a Challenge: Ski or ride directly under the Frenchman’s lift for fun, ungroomed tracks
Baldy may get all the accolades, but it’s not the only mountain in the resort. Dollar Mountain is located in Sun Valley’s village, near the Sun Valley Lodge. Smaller and less steep than Baldy, it holds the original ski slopes cut by the resort in 1936. Today, two types of skiers and boarders enjoy Dollar: beginners and tricksters.
While there are green-rated runs on Baldy, it's far from a novice’s mountain. Its steep, high terrain, and expert skiers can unnerve beginners. Dollar, on the other hand, offers the gentle slopes and short runs that help build confidence.
Dollar Mountain also is home to Sun Valley’s terrain parks. Multiple sections of park (kept comfortably separate from the beginner trails) accommodate everyone from Olympic hopefuls to skiers and boarders trying their tricks for the first time. Banks, bowls, jumps, features, and a cross course provide plenty of opportunities for that perfect GoPro moment.
Perfect For: Beginners and tricksters Must Ski: Sepp’s For a Challenge: The baby features at Prospector Park let even the least coordinated of us ride a rail
Whether this is your first or fiftieth time at Sun Valley, the resort’s trails are sure to challenge your legs, your lungs, and your stamina. We’ll see you out there!