5 Best Ski Resorts for Beginners in Washington State

Washington offers some of the best snow and terrain for skiing!

After all, the top 2 mountain peaks for snowfall reside in Washington (Mt Baker & Mt Rainier). 

Before you start imagining all black diamond slopes, you should know there is great diversity out there.

Here are our picks for the 5 best beginner ski resorts in Washington.

Resort Name

Easy Green Trails

Lifts

Snow Tubing Available

19 Trails

26 Lifts (6 Magic Carpets)

Yes

5 Trails

3 Lifts (1 Platterpull)

No

3 Trails

4 Lifts (3 Rope Tows)

Yes

6 Trails

8 Lifts (1 Magic Carpet)

Yes

17 Trails

7 Lifts (1 Handle Tow)

No

The Summit at Snoqualmie

The Summit at Snoqualmie is more like a mega resort made up of 4 separate mountains, 4 base areas, 1,994 skiable acres, and snow tubing.

As a beginner, West is where you will likely want to spend most of your time. It has the most to offer as you are learning.

Yet, don't rule out the others right away.

There is plenty of fun to be had.

The best part? They offer beginner and magic carpet only lift ticket prices.

Easy Green Trails  

There are 19 easy, green trails spread out across 4 mountains. 

Magic Carpet Lifts 

There are a total of 6 magic carpet lifts. Since West is for pure beginners, they have 3 of them!

easy ski icon

Lesson Packages 

There are lesson options available on all 4 mountains. Some require advance notice, and others are only offered for walk-ins.

Make sure to check out the details ahead of time. Here are a few options for beginners:

  • First Class Beginner Package - 1 hour 45 minute lesson with the basics to get you started.
  • Triple Play - Designed to progress you from the learning area to the green slopes. Package of 3 beginner lessons, each 1 hour 45 minutes.
  • Private Lessons - Offered as a walk-in option. Book in 1-3 hour increments and buy as 1 single lesson or a 3-pack. 
  • Kids Club Half Day Lesson - Offered to children ages 4-12; grouped by age and skill.

To check out the details and pricing, click here.

skis icon

Rental Packages

Summit West has the newest, largest rental shop.

Offering daily and night only rates, you can book online for added convenience. Check the rates and book here.

snow tube icon

Snow Tubing Availability

Get ready for 8+ lanes of snow tubing with a conveyor lift to make the trip to the top easy.

 It is so popular they recommend you purchase tickets online in advance

mountain icon

Off Mountain Activities

There are a total of 18 restaurant and bar venues on the mountain!

They range from coffee shops to snack bars, cafeterias and grills to bars and a speakeasy.

When you are done in the cold, off mountain activities will be found in town or with your lodging choice.

The Summit is focused entirely on skiing, snow boarding, and snow tubing.

happy face icon

Common Praises

Go see it for the views alone!

The location is very convenient to Seattle and offers a wide variety of ski terrain. 

It is perfect to learn to ski and prepare for larger, longer slopes.

Bluewood

Bluewood boasts being one of Washington's best kept secrets.

With 300 inches of dry snow annually, more than 400 skiable acres, and affordable prices this ski area is a must to check out. 

Not only are they family friendly, but they have have something for everyone.  

Easy Green Trails  

There are 5 green trails for beginners.

You can even purchase a discounted lift ticket for their beginner area.

Magic Carpet Lifts 

There is a beginner area called Nickel Bowl that has 1 platter pull for beginners.

easy ski icon

Lesson Packages 

There are some great options for first-time, beginner skiers. Here are a few of your options:

  • Learn to Ski Package - Includes a 1-hour lesson with access to the beginner area and platter pull
  • EZ SKi Package - Includes 3-days of group lessons, Day -1 beginner only area. Days 2-3 are all mountain access days.
  • Group Lessons - Placed in small groups by skill level for 1-hour.
  • Private Lessons - 1-on-1 instruction for 1-hour.
  • Kids Group Lessons by Age - Skyliner Kids (4-6), Just Kids (7-12). 

To see details and rates, click here.

skis icon

Rental Packages

The rental shop carries all of the equipment you need to ski or snowboard.

Rent in half day or full day packages. Click here to view rates.

snow tube icon

Snow Tubing Availability

There is no snow tube park at Bluewood.

mountain icon

Off Mountain Activities

At the lodge you will find a food service area and pub. Otherwise, Bluewood is all about the skiing and snowboarding.

Any additional activities or amenities will be found in town or with your lodging.

happy face icon

Common Praises

Fun mid-sized ski area with great family atmosphere.

Parking is easy, and there is a tractor - sled to take you from your car to the lodge. 

The terrain that Bluewood has to offer is fantastic for beginners.

Echo Valley

Echo Valley is a small ski area outside of Chelan that is very different from everything else out there.

Known as being THE place for winter recreation. 

It's a privately owned, non-profit, volunteer operation. Quite possibly one of the most affordable places to learn to ski.

There is 70 acres of terrain from beginner to expert. Definitely worth checking out.  

Easy Green Trails  

There are 3 easy green trails to master.

Magic Carpet Lifts 

There is 1 rope tow lift designated for easy trails. Take it to the top for an easy climb.  

easy ski icon

Lesson Packages 

Being a small ski area, they only offer drop-in group lessons.

Available twice daily, participants are grouped by skill level.

Ages 4 and up are welcome to join.

To view rates, click here.

skis icon

Rental Packages

Lakeland Ski is the family owned rental shop onsite.

They offer packages for downhill skiing, cross country skiing, snowboarding, and snowshoeing.

Check their website for rates and details.

snow tube icon

Snow Tubing Availability

There is a 4-lane tubing hill perfect for mixing up your winter fun. 

mountain icon

Off Mountain Activities

When you are ready to get out of the cold, try warming yourself by the fireplace inside the lodge or grab a bite to eat.

Any additional activities or amenities will be found in Chelan or your choice of lodging.

happy face icon

Common Praises

Echo Valley is a vintage ski area that's perfect for kids and families who want to hit the slopes.

The low key setting, uncrowded areas, and ease of terrain makes it a really great place to learn.

So affordable!

White Pass

White Pass is located just southeast of Mt Rainier National Park.

They offer 635 skiable acres. Some say it has two distinct personalities. 

The first being the gentle, open lower mountain that is perfect for beginners and new intermediate skiers.

Then there is the upper mountain for established, advanced skiers.

It's an easy commute from Seattle making it an easily accessible, great ski getaway.

Easy Green Trails  

There are 6 easy green trails to explore as you build confidence and skill.

Magic Carpet Lifts 

There is 1 magic carpet lift in the beginners area to get you ready for the bigger hills.

easy ski icon

Lesson Packages 

As a beginner, lessons are a great way to get you started. Here are some of the options you may want to consider:

  • Introduction to Skiing - Get a lesson designed specifically for first time skiers.
  • EZ Ski - This is a progression based course including 3-days of lessons. Perfect for beginners.
  • Group Lessons - You will be grouped by skill level. The lessons are offered 3 times daily. No reservation required.
  • Private Lessons - Get 1-on-1 training during a 1-hour lesson.
  • Kids Clinic - Offers a full or half-day program for kids ages 4-12.

Check out their website for lesson details and rates.

skis icon

Rental Packages

The rental shop is on the ground floor of the lodge. All of the equipment you need to ski or snowshoe can be rented there.

Check out daily rates here.

snow tube icon

Snow Tubing Availability

The snow tube hill offers everything you need to race down the chute for a rush of fun. Book your session in 2-hour increments

mountain icon

Off Mountain Activities

There are 7 food venues ranging from a coffee shop, snack bars, full service restaurants, and a pub. 

If you are staying onsite at the White Pass Village Inn, you can take a dip in their outdoor pool. During winter months it is heated like an outdoor spa.

happy face icon

Common Praises

Nice mid-sized ski area in the Cascades.

Beginners like it because they can buy a lower-priced ticket for just the lower area. They have some great runs for all levels of skier.

Views from the mountain are amazing.

49° North

49° North Ski Area is located just north of Spokane, and touted as one of the Northwest’s best ski areas for families.

Not only do all kids 6 and under ski for free, but they also offer a beginner (Chair #3) lift ticket making it more affordable for beginners.

Re-investment is happening here to update and improve the property. 

It is quickly becoming a mega ski area.

Easy Green Trails  

There are 17 green trails located all across the mountain for beginners. 

Magic Carpet Lifts 

There is 1 handle tow lift near the base of the mountain. 

easy ski icon

Lesson Packages 

As a beginner, there are quite a few options for lessons. Here are a few you may want to consider:

  • Learn to Ski - Designed specifically for first time skiers. Learn in a small group setting.
  • EZ Ski 123 - Package of 3 lessons guaranteed to have you skiing like a pro. Each day is 1-1.5 hours of lesson time followed by practice on your own.
  • Private Lesson - Personalized 1-on-1 lesson designed for your skill and ability. This is a 1-hour lesson for ages 7+.
  • Mommy/Daddy & Me Class - Uniquely designed course for young kids to learn; Ages 2+.
  • Scout Lesson - For children ages 5-6. Booked in half-day and full-day option.
  • Trailblazer Lesson - For children ages 7-13 to learn to ski.

Check their site for lesson details and rates.

skis icon

Rental Packages

The rental shop provides all of the equipment you need for a day on the slopes.

Choose from half-day or full-day options. Get the latest rates here.

snow tube icon

Snow Tubing Availability

There is no snow tube hill at 49° North.

mountain icon

Off Mountain Activities

49° North is all about the skiing and snowboarding.

Onsite you will find dining and drinks at 3 venues.

Any additional activities will be found in town.

Other amenities will be attached to your lodging.

happy face icon

Common Praises

A local secret for great snow and a friendly atmosphere. Little to no wait times at the lifts.

Fun place to ski.

Family friendly, affordable, ski terrain well developed.

Leave a Comment