IdahoSkiSeasonBegins GrandTarghee GaryPeterson
Grand Targhee photo courtesy of Gary Peterson for Ski Idaho

Idaho 2023-24 ski and snowboard season begins


ALTA, Wyo. (Nov. 17, 2023) — Ski and snowboard season officially begins in Idaho today. Well, technically in “Wydaho.”

Grand Targhee Resort, which opens today with very limited terrain, is the first Ski Idaho destination to open this winter. The resort lies four miles beyond the Gem State’s border and affiliates with Ski Idaho because the only way to reach it is through Driggs, Idaho.

Only the Shoshone Chairlift and the new Huckleberry Conveyor Lift will be open. There will be one groomed run off of each lift and some other ungroomed terrain off of Shoshone.

According to Mark Neff, Grand Targhee’s director of mountain operations, the resort has had a slow start to the winter with warm temps and limited precipitation. He said it has very limited snowmaking and relies on Mother Nature to provide enough for opening day.

“The start to every season is a little bit different,” Neff said. “This year we have had limited snowfall and warm weather leading up to opening day. We decided to only open the Shoshone and Huckleberry lifts for the time being, so there will only be a few runs open. We need quite a bit more snow until we can safely open Dreamcatcher and the south side of the resort.”

He said the resort will keep people up to date on additional lift and trail openings via its smartphone app.

IdahoSkiSeasonBegins BogusBasin CourtesyBogus
Photo courtesy of Bogus Basin 

In addition, Bogus Basin Mountain Recreation Area will open The Explorer Terrain Park this Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 18-19, as planned from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. It is free on Saturday, and $10 (plus tax) on Sunday.

However, the likely scenario next week is that Bogus Basin will only operate The Explorer Terrain Park Nov. 24-26 instead of starting to spin the chairlifts as originally planned.

“If temperatures drop as forecasted, we can launch snowmaking and hopefully operate the Coach Chairlift,” Susan Saad, the mountain’s community relations director, said. “We will not be opening on Thanksgiving. Hours that weekend will be 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. A limited number of tickets will be available online for purchase beginning Wednesday Nov. 22.”

IdahoSkiSeasonBegins KellyCanyon GaryPeterson
Kelly Canyon photo courtesy of Gary Peterson with Ski Idaho 

Meanwhile, Kelly Canyon Resort and Sun Valley Resort will open Thanksgiving Day. Kelly Canyon’s new snow-tubing hill at Ryder Park in Idaho Falls, Gateway to Kelly Canyon, is slated to open Nov. 23, too.

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Sun Valley photo courtesy of Gary Peterson with Ski Idaho

Three more Idaho ski areas plan to open Thanksgiving weekend. Lookout Pass Ski & Recreation Area, Silver Mountain Resort, and Schweitzer intend to open Nov. 24. Lookout Pass and Schweitzer both need help from the weather, and the former may push its opening back to Dec. 1 if Mother Nature doesn’t cooperate.

IdahoSkiSeasonBegins Schweitzer CourtesySchweitzer
Photo courtesy of Schweitzer

Beyond that, four other Ski Idaho destinations have announced tentative opening dates. Soldier Mountain is targeting Dec. 8, Tamarack Resort plans to open Dec. 9 or earlier if Mother Nature permits, and the Little Ski Hill and Snowhaven Ski Area and Tubing Hill are eyeballing Dec. 22 and Dec. 23, respectively.

Opening dates for Ski Idaho’s remaining eight destinations — Bald Mountain Ski Area near Pierce, Brundage Mountain Resort, Cottonwood Butte Ski Area, Lost Trail Ski Area, Magic Mountain Ski Resort, Pebble Creek Ski Area, Pomerelle Mountain Resort, and Rotarun Ski Area — are to be determined based on weather. Check the mountains’ websites and social media feeds for updates.