Skiing Schweitzer Mountain, Idaho with kids

While we lived in Spokane, WA, we spent a good deal of time at neighboring Lake Pend Oreille at Sandpoint, Idaho, and in the winter skiing Schweitzer Mountain. Schweitzer is located above the lake deep in the snowy peaks, and feels like it, too! Families will want to be ready for any weather this far north, but will be rewarded with prime skiing and snowboarding as well.

lake pend oreille view from Schweitzer

Where to stay:

While skiing at Schweitzer, families have the option of staying near the lake, or in the Schweitzer Village. While lakeside is beautiful, the drive up the mountain road every day gets tiresome. I recommend staying slope side in the White Pine Lodge, Schweitzer Mountain’s newest condo accommodations. Families have quick ski-in, ski-out access, and can easily return to their condo for downtime. Best of all, with the Schweitzer Difference Package, families get free breakfast! Nearby home rentals are also available, but not as plentiful: Schweitzer is located on a mountainside…not a lot of land is available. This makes for a cozy resort feel.

On the mountain:

Schweitzer lift tickets are still refreshingly affordable at under $70 for adults (less for multi-day) and kids still ski free under age 6. As always, buying your tickets online for multiple days will give you the best deal. Their Ski-3 package gives you three totally transferrable adult tickets for $162, a good choice if you plan to have one adult stay back with small kids each ski day.

white pine lodgeSchweitzer Mountain’s terrain is varied, and for the adventure seekers, there is Cat skiing. Night skiing is available (a great option for tweens and teens) and an entire Nordic bowl offers cross-country skiing. The Schweitzer Ski and Ride Center takes kids as young as four months for their day care program, and offers lessons up to age 12 in their ski and ride school. Adult lessons are also available (and good for teens).

Where to eat:

We love eating in-house in our ski condo or rental, but everyone needs to eat out, too! The Schweitzer Village has all types of family dining. We recommend the Chimney Rock Grill for salads, steaks, and seafood, and Powder Hound Pizza for casual dining with kids. Stock up on groceries before heading up the mountain in Sandpoint. Village campfires can be found most nights: stock up on the makings for s’mores!

Date last visited: January 2010

Distance from the interstate: 45 minutes from I-90

Nearest town: Sandpoint, Idaho

Directions: Schweitzer is located 1.5 hours from Spokane or 45 minutes from Coeur d’Alene. Take Highway 95 from I-90.

Photo credit: yenny.