Crystal Mountain

Ski resorts in USA
Crystal Mountain lies in the Mt. Baker Snoqualmie National Forest, and in the heart of the Cascades Mountains. With its 2,600 skiable acres, it’s the biggest resort in Washington state. When the resort opened in 1962, it only boasted two double chairlifts. Located on Highway 410, roughly 1 ½ hour southeast of Seattle, makes it easily accessible from Bellevue, Seattle and Tacoma. Just like the other ski resorts in the Pacific Northwest, such as Mt. Baker, Mt. Bachelor and Timberline, Crystal sports that same low-key vibe where the emphasis is on skiing and magnificent terrain rather than resort gastronomy and boutique hotels. And you’ll probably find a few locals who won’t let a bit of downpour deterring them from getting in a few shreds.

A natural terrain mecca

On a clear day, the Crystal Mountain gondola takes you 2,400 feet up to the summit, where Mt. Rainer is there to greet you with its awe-inspiring views. Open bowls are all around. But Crystal’s best terrain is found in the backcountry, and the Northway Lift is your gateway. Here in the sidecountry, no grooming means some of the best glade skiing in the state. There’s avalanche control but do make sure to pack your avy safety gear. On powder days, you might have wished that you would have brought a snorkel, too. Then there’s the vast South Backcountry, known as the Southback, featuring extreme drop offs such as Silver King Peak, which is Crystal’s highest point at 7,012 feet. Silver Basin, and Avalanche Basin, are two awesome spots for solid powder turns.

Mark your calendars for March madness

Crystal has had a history of snow-heavy Decembers, where the average has been 100+ inches, but with such huge dumps also comes storm days, which can wipe out the mountain for days on end. The month of March is a better bet, sunshine, clear blue days and still lots of powder, inbound and in the backcountry.

Crystal Mountain Snow forecast

  • Thursday
    0 cm
    Sun/clear sky
    1 m/s
  • Friday
    0 cm
    Sun/clear sky
    0 m/s
  • Saturday
    0 cm
    4 m/s

Facts about Crystal Mountain

Slopes (Total: 86)
Green circle Easiest:7
Blue square Intermediate:28
Black diamond Advanced:27
Double black diamond Expert Only:24

Lifts (Total: 11)
Gondola lift:1
Chair lifts:9
Platter lift:1
Lift capacity:19110 persons/hour

Vertical drop
Crystal Mountain Vertical drop
Mountain high: 7011 ft
Vertical drop: 2612 ft
Mountain low: 4400 ft

Country: USA
Region: Washington

Reviews for Crystal Mountain

What do you think about Crystal Mountain?
2 reviews
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Not quite bad. Nice variety of systems, definitely worth a day or 2 - but check the weather before. It may be a little bit so and so with the heat here.
If I happen to be in Seattle and the weather has been good I will definitely go back, there was a lot left to explore.

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Be there 01-02 and not be very good at all. Softer snow can be found. Easy-to-use off-piste, but completely cash pistes. If you are in Seattle, it's worth a visit. Otherwise not.

Most popular photo

Rider: Keith Rollins Photo: Adam Ü

Trail map

Trail map Crystal Mountain

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