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About Sun Valley

With more than 75 years of experience, top-notch repute and 250 days of sunshine a year, you’re guaranteed a Sun Valley ski resort vacation that will dazzle just about every preference. It started as a playground for European nobility and Hollywood stars in 1936, when it opened the world’s first chairlift. The modern American ski resort was truly born and bred in Sun Valley Idaho.

Bright, sunny days with comfortable temperatures combined with long, wide-open groomed runs and awesome scenery are the reasons for Sun Valley’s storied appeal among the world’s skiing elite. But don’t let the prestige mislead you—this is Idaho after all. Expect a low-key atmosphere with the highest standards of service and comfort. Famed ski-filmer Warren Miller began his early career in Sun Valley Idaho, camping out in a van in the parking lot by night and filming by day. Sun Valley ski resort offers over 70 runs, a 3,400-foot vertical drop and more uphill capacity, per skier, than any other ski area.

Off-mountain activities include skating at the Olympic rink, Nordic skiing, snowshoeing, a lively and tradition-rich apres-ski scene, and world-class dining and shopping. An excellent European-style shuttle service provides easy access to the slopes and town.

Stay

... in Hailey, Ketchum, or Sun Valley

Ski

... some of North America's best fall line terrain off Mt. Baldy

Travel

... by flying into neaby Hailey or Twin Falls, Idaho.

Enjoy

... the lively nightlife that can be found in downtown Ketchum

Explore

... the historic Sun Valley Lodge, where notable personalities like Ernest Hemingway and Marilyn Monroe used to relax.

Taste

... unique dishes from world renowned chefs at one of Sun Valley' many fine dining establishments.

Treat

... yourself to a romantic sleigh ride between Dollar and Proctor mountains

Experience

... one of the birthplaces of modern ski culture

Ski Sun Valley Resort

Sun Valley Resort is the ultimate intermediate skier’s haven. Boasting over 2,000 skiable acres, with 44 percent of the terrain designated as intermediate, Sun Valley truly has some of the best groomers in North America. This Idaho ski resort certainly lives up to its namesake and is a top-of-mind choice for fair-weather skiers. Sun Valley Resort skiing is divided by two mountains: Bald Mountain and Dollar Mountain. Baldy, which earned its nomenclature after several forest fires, offers expert skiers and snowboarders more challenging terrain, including perfectly spaced glades and wide-open bowl skiing. Dollar Mountain is more suited for beginners and early intermediates, thanks to its gentle, meandering groomers.

Sun Valley Heli Operators

sun valley heli skiing packages, sun valley heli skiing trip

Learn more

  • 6 run day trips as well as a 3-5 day Lodge trip and other packages are available
  • 750,000 square acres of spectacular Idaho backcountry
  • Accommodates intermediate to expert skiers

Best known for:

Intermediate Skiing


Beginner Skiing


Expert Skiing


Mountain Stats

  • Skiable Area:

    2054

    ac
  • Vertical Drop:

    3399

    ft
  • Snowfall:

    0

    in

Current Weather

49°F

High:43°F
Low:23°F
weather

Current Conditions

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Sun Valley Ski Vacation Packages

If Sun Valley's old world charm and unforgettable groomers sound like the winter destination you've been dreaming of, start the booking process today. You can begin by searching our online Sun Valley lodging inventory. Use the filters to narrow down the options based on your budget and preferences. You can also book your flights, ground transfers, lift tickets, lessons and equipment rental online. Or if you'd prefer, leave the heavy-lifting to Ski.com's knowledgeable Mountain Vacation Specialists. They can help you customize your ideal Sun Valley ski vacation package, including accommodations, air travel, ground transportation, lift tickets, ski or snowboard rentals, activities to events around town and more.

Call or chat now with one of our 65+ Mountain Vacation Specialists.

CUSTOMER REVIEWS (1)

OVERALL CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE*

4.0
Good
*based on the average of all Overall Experience ratings given in Traveler reviews.

What the experts are saying

Bill Kelly
Bill Kelly
Mountain Travel Expert
1-800-908-5000 X 3692
3.7
Good

Sun Valley, Idaho is America’s Shangri la!

Jennifer Roberts
03/17/2016

Fun in the Not So Much Sun

Great resort that lives up to its claims- long runs, great vertical, no lift lines- ever- etc. We had terrible weather the last three days but didn't let it ruin the trip. Mountain is not as easy as some (Big Sky) and not as hard as others (Jackson Hole). The lodges are nice and the food is decent for lodge fair - I would not say it is the greatest like some of the claims but its better than most on the east coast. The Sun Valley Lodge area is not much in the way of restaurants/shops so I would recommend staying closer to the town of Ketchum and getting the shuttle to the mountains. Seattle Ridge and the Roundhouse were the best for food and views. River Run had a great après ski scene at the end of the day. Warm Springs smells like sulfur so I would avoid staying over there.

EXPERT REVIEWS (4)

4.2
Good
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    Family Vacation
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    Nightlife
  • 4.8
    Dining
  • 4.3
    Accommodations
  • 3.5
    Budget Vacation
  • 4.8
    Activities
  • 3.8
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  • 4.0
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  • 4.8
    Intermediate Skiing
  • 4.5
    Expert Skiing
  • 4.0
    Terrain Park
  • 4.0
    Shopping
  • 5.0
    Spa
  • 4.0
    Access
  • 3.0
    Ski-in Ski-out
Expert reviews are written by our seasoned mountain vacation specialists based on their first-hand experiences.

Key:

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  • 5=Excellent

Reviews

Ray  Polglaze
Ray Polglaze
Mountain Vacation Specialist
1-800-908-5000
X 3366

Sun Valley - tradition, comfort and wow!

4.3
Good
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lthough it is hard to describe a place that was the first destination ski resort in the US to be established (in 1936) as a hidden gem, Sun Valley could easily fit into that category. It is an amazing blend of remoteness and accessibility, frontier and luxury as well as comfort and exhilaration. When you stand on the summit of Bald Mountain, there are mountain peaks in all directions. The only signs of human habitation that you can see are the resort and the nearby town of Ketchum. However, getting there is much easier than you would expect. There are direct flights to Sun Valley/Hailey from Chicago, Denver, Salt Lake City, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Seattle. Sun Valley is very proud of its history. There is still much evidence in Ketchum of the town past as a mining center and sheep ranching community. Sun Valley, just 2 miles from Ketchum, has long been a favorite vacation spot for celebrities which is evidenced by the photos in the hallways of the Sun Valley Lodge. When you visit, you can stay in one of two areas: Sun Valley or Ketchum. Sun Valley emphasis is on luxury and service. If you stay at the Lodge or the Inn, you will have access to a wide array of amenities including beautiful outdoor pools, full service spa, world class dining and an unforgettable sleigh-ride dinner in Ernest Hemingway old hunting lodge. Ketchum has a little more hustle and bustle but offers several excellent hotels, including the Limelight and Hotel Ketchum, which have a very high level of service in a more contemporary setting. The main ski area, known as Bald Mountain, is huge. If you want to ski long leg-burning groomers from top to bottom or jump into any of the lift-accessed bowls, you will have a memorable experience. Up on the mountain, you will probably never have more than a 30 second wait to get on a lift. For great on-mountain food, go to the Lookout Restaurant (also known as The Bunker) at the top of the Christmas chairlift. They have the best tacos in the area. If you haven't been to Sun Valley because it takes too long to get there or here’s no ski in/ski out places to stay, I urge you to reconsider. It’s easier to get to than you think and the lack of lodging on the mountain gives it a more pristine and unspoiled feel. The resort shuttle service is frequent and friendly and I guarantee that you will appreciate the open vistas and serenity of the area.

Hap Bruce
Hap Bruce
Mountain Vacation Specialist
1-800-908-5000
X 3333

Sun Valley Resort

4.5
Excellent
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My first ski experience was in Sun Valley in 1963. I was a Bellman at the Sun Valley Lodge. The historic Lodge with the outdoor ice skating rink and 360* pool sits in the valley 1 mile to the delightful town of Ketchem. The original bowling alley in the basement of the Lodge is still open. Across from the Lodge is the beautiful sister hotel The Challenger Inn which has been totally remodeled. This hotel still has the original façade as does the Lodge. Sun Valley was the first resort built to be a Ski Resort in 1936, and the first chairlift in the United States is still standing. Sun Valley Resort is connected to the lifts by complimentary buses. There are also 1 to 5 bedroom condos in the Resort which are great for families. Ketchem offers both hotels and condos also on the free bus line. The hotels range from a Best Western to luxury Knob Hill. There are also many condos to choose for any budget. There is no ski in/out in Sun Valley, but transportation makes if very easy to go skiing, shopping, and dining. Ski School is in 2 areas. Beginner and children at Dollar Mountain(Sun Valley Resort), and at Mount Baldy the main Mountain in Ketchem. Parents need to be advised about this when selecting Sun Valley. Since Sun Valley base elevation is 6000 feet, altitude sickness is not concern. Their snowmaking is the most elaborate in the country, offering good conditions even in low snow years. Besides a great ski mountain, the history of Sun Valley takes you back in time to mingle with all the celebrities who flocked here for the beginning of Skiing. Their photos should not be missed in the Lodge. Sun Valley should be on your bucket list of skiing.

Cindy Bruce
Cindy Bruce
Mountain Vacation Specialist
1-800-908-5000
X 3629

Sun Valley charm

4.5
Excellent
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What a charming destination: Sun Valley Village and Ketchum Idaho. Walking down the hallways in the Sun Valley Lodge and Inn you view the history of skiing and the celebrities that helped grow the sport. It was so entertaining looking at all the black and whites photos from Gary Cooper, Lucille Ball, and Janet Leigh to Peggy Fleming and Arnold Schwarzenegger. In our condo we watched Sun Valley Serenade again and again—what fun to see a young Milton Berle skiing in a raccoon coat and then having dinner at The Roundhouse on top of the mountain with Sonja Henie. We too ate dinner at The Roundhouse. We took the gondola up where we were kept warm and cozy with big horse blankets. Dinner was extraordinary; especially as we watched the almost full moon rise over the mountain range. Breathtaking! Sun Valley Ski area on Bald Mountain has three beautiful day lodges: River Run and Warm Springs at the bottom and Seattle Ridge on top. They were clearly all built with the dramatic mountain views in mind. The skiing was varied with bowls and wide open long runs too.Dollar Mountain is where beginners will be comfortable learning to ski or snowboard. The children’s ski school building is newly built and is clearly laid out with the kids and parents in mind. The meeting place is fun, bright and secure. The kid sized tables have bowls of animal crackers and gold fish all around. One side of the large room is dedicated to pint size ski and snowboard rentals-painless for the kids and parents alike. Go right out the door and start your lessons! The layout even makes it possible for parents or grandparents to watch the kids from a nice, warm spot inside Carol’s Dollar Mountain Lodge.Dollar Mountain also contains the various levels of terrain parks and a new SPT designed 22’ half pipe. They also have designed a great tubing hill and family race course that makes it great fun for all interests.

Bill Kelly
Bill Kelly
Mountain Vacation Specialist
1-800-908-5000
X 3692

Sun Valley, Idaho is America’s Shangri la!

3.7
Good
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I like places with a history, and Sun Valley ski resort has a storied one. Opening in 1936, it was the West’s first ski area, and they even installed the first chairlift in the world there. With a base area of 5,700 feet and a top elevation of 9,100 feet, Sun Valley ski resort boasts 4,400 vertical feet of skiing and 2,054 skiable acres. The lower elevation at Sun Valley makes it an ideal ski resort to visit for skiers that have trouble with the higher elevations. Sun Valley also boasts Dollar Mountain, a separate lift-served mountain that is exclusively for beginners. You will find Nordic skiing, tubing, snow shoeing, and sleigh rides at Sun Valley. In the summer there is hiking, mountain biking, golf, fly fishing and even trap shooting. Here is another secret: both summer and winter seasons offer some of the best celebrity spotting in the West!