“This is God’s country.” That’s what former Schweitzer owner James Brown used to say when he stood on the mountain’s 6,400-foot summit. Joelle Traynor, Brown’s granddaughter who grew up skiing at Schweitzer, says the place took his breath away like no other place could.
Even with Sandpoint, Idaho, population 7,500, located 20 minutes away, Traynor says you can always find unskied terrain at Schweitzer. The 2,900 skiable acres of terrain are a formidable opponent to better-known resorts, but this is largely a local’s spot.
Schweitzer is known for tree skiing. When the northwest fog engulfs the mountain, the tree lines are a saving grace, lighthouses in an ocean of white. Siberia, Headwall, and the trees to the left of J.R. are safe bets for some amazing snow and untouched lines. At Schweitzer, crowds are rarely a problem—but if you want to leave civilization behind, take the T-Bar and head over to the base of Big Blue peak to access the backcountry. Swing by Outback Inn for a burger on your way back inbounds and relax by the bonfire for lunch. When Mother Nature is generous, the South and North Bowls provide the deepest, steepest terrain Schweitzer has to offer. Read more here.—Mychaela Nickoloff