Night skiing is offered to those who want to continue skiing after lifts close in the afternoon. Night skiing generally takes place from 4pm – 9pm, with a few lifts opened on specified days of the week. Night skiing is sometimes included in the price of a day pass, however in some resorts you must buy a night pass.
Does the idea of skiing down the mountain after sundown, with nothing but torches and floodlights to illuminate the way, put you on the edge of your seat ready to grab your skis and headtorch? If you are here to find out what night skiing is all about, it is exactly what you are expecting it to be, and is as exhilarating as you are hoping it might be.
Night skiing brings with it an extra feeling of adventure and wildness, more so even than daytime skiing does. Night skiing is something I would recommend everyone to try at least once in their lifetime, for the surreal experience. Night skiing isn’t as much about spending time improving style or technique as normal skiing might be, its more about enjoying the novelty of it, the atmosphere and the peacefulness. It really is a tranquil experience that will have you in awe of this amazing wilderness you find yourself in.
Is Night Skiing Dangerous?
Although you may be inclined to think night skiing would be more difficult than daytime skiing, you will find the slopes to be well lit by the floodlights, to make it accessible to as many people as possible. Yes, there is less light than during the day so it is going to be a bit more difficult and you will need to ski with more caution to avoid injuries, but as long as you stay on the pistes, there will enough light for you as long as you go carefully. It is however worth checking with your insurance company that night skiing is included in your policy. This may be one of the finer details that isn’t included, so make sure you double check before you set off under cover of darkness to hit the slopes.
What Time Does Night Skiing Start?
The exact times of night skiing will vary from resort to resort, however often there will be a break between daytime skiing and night skiing to give the groomers (the huge machines that compact the pistes) a chance to prepare the slopes for night skiing. Night skiing probably won't happen every night of the week, so it is worth checking which nights it is available in the resort you are at.
What Do I Wear For Night Skiing?
As you would expect, night skiing is going to be a bit colder than skiing during the day due to the discrete absence of a sun. For this reason, make sure you have an extra layer or two on compared to what you normally wear for skiing during the day. Generally speaking, the best goggles lens to wear for night skiing is the same one you would use for low light visibility, such as when it is cloudy or foggy.
Where Can You Night Ski?
Not every resort offers night skiing, but there are plenty of resorts that do. Here are some of the best places to ski at night in America:
Colorado Night Skiing
- Keystone Resort - The two lifts River Run Gondola and Peru Express operate in this resort until 8pm on specified dates throughout the winter. Check the Keystone website to find out the exact details of how to get involved!
- Steamboat Resort - Night skiing at Steamboat takes place from 5:30pm – 8:30pm, Thursday – Monday most weeks throughout the winter. The Christie Peak Express high-speed chairlift is operational to give you access to 5 different runs of varying difficulty. Check the website for details of how to book a ticket.
Mt. Hood, Oregon
Allegedly the largest night skiing area in the USA! with an enormous 34 well-lit runs to ski through the night. This resort has night skiing available to 10pm Sunday – Thursdays and until 11pm on Fridays and Saturdays. Check out their website!
Snow Summit, Big Bear, California
Through purchasing either a season pass or a night pass, you can enjoy night skiing from 3PM - 8:30PM at Snow Summit on specified dates throughout the winter. For 19/20 season these dates are as follows For 19/20 season these dates are as follows:
- December: 20th – 23th , 25th – 31st
- January: 1st – 4th , 10th – 11th , 17th –19th , 24th –25th , 31st
- February: 1st , 7th – 8th , 14th – 6th , 22nd , 29th
Unfortunately, single and multi-day passes do not include night skiing, though it is possible to upgrade for a special price.
The slopes open for night skiing include Upper Miracle Mile and Summit Run, open for both skiers and snowboarders, along with Westridge Park. These are all beginner to intermediate runs.
Boreal Mountain, Tahoe, California
The only resort in Tahoe to offer night skiing on every day of the week throughout the winter! That’s a whopping 12 hours of skiing from 9am until 9pm if you fancy it. The chairlifts open until 9pm include Accelerator and Castle Peak.