The Summit at Snoqualmie

The Summit at Snoqualmie

Infobox ski area
name = The Summit at Snoqualmie

picture =
caption =
location = Snoqualmie Pass, Washington, United States
nearest_city = Cle Elum (30 miles east)
lat_d =
long_d =
top_elevation = 5420 ft (Alpental)
base_elevation = 2610 ft (Summit East)
skiable_area = convert|1914|acre|km2
number_trails =
longest_run =
liftsystem = 19 chairs, 10 surface lifts
fast_quadchair =
triplechair =
doublechair =
snowfall =
external_link = [] - official site|

The Summit at Snoqualmie, located on Snoqualmie Pass, Washington, is a winter resort providing alpine skiing and snowboarding, Nordic skiing, and winter tubing owned by CNL Investment Properties, Inc. and managed by Boyne USA Resorts.The Summit consists of four base areas that used to be individually owned and operated resorts. Alpental, Summit West (formerly named Snoqualmie Pass), Summit Central (formerly named Ski Acres), and Summit East (formerly named Hyak and PacWest), border Lake Keechelus on the East and the Alpine Lakes Wilderness on the West/North. The Summit at Snoqualmie is the closest ski area to Seattle, and is easily accessible via Interstate 90.

The vertical drop ranges from convert|2280|ft|m|abbr=on at Alpental, to convert|765|ft|m|abbr=on at Summit West. Combined, the four base areas have a total of 19 chairlifts, and 10 surface lifts. The resort is open seven days a week, with night operations 6 nights per week.


Alpental is the only one of the four base areas located north of I-90 and is known for its advanced and backcountry terrain including some of the steepest runs around.


* Base - convert|3140|ft|m
* Summit - convert|5420|ft|m
* Vertical drop - convert|2280|ft|m

* - lift serviced
* - backcountry
* Advanced/expert - 75%
* Intermediate - 20%
* Beginner - 5%

* 1 high speed quad
* 3 double chairs
* 1 rope tow


The existence of the Alpental ski area is owed primarily to early prospectors of the valley. Bob Mickelson and some friends bought options on the mining claims around 1960 with plans to develop a ski area on Denny Mountain and a community in the lower area. To help out with their plan, they enlisted Warren Miller to produce a promotional video simply titled "Alpental". To gain access to the area, an agreement had to be made with the [ Sahalie Ski Club] to allow a road through their property. Alpental ski area agreed to maintain this section of road at their cost for the Sahalie group in exchange for this access for 99 years.

The ski area opened for the 1967-68 season with 3 lifts and 5 rope tows, had night skiing from the beginning and was closed on Mondays, as it is today. In 1977 the ski area was sold to "Westours" (an Alaska tour operator) then in 1984 "Westours" sold to "Ski Lifts, Inc.". In 1998, Alpental (along with the three other Snoqualmie Pass ski areas) were sold to Booth Creek Ski Holdings Inc. In 2007 Booth Creek sold the ski area to CNL Income Properties, Inc. and is managed by Boyne USA Resorts.

ummit West

Summit West contains the most popular learning terrain of the whole resort. Mainly a beginner/intermediate area, Summit West is home to the Summit Learning Center which offers many lesson varieties for the whole family.


* Base - convert|3000|ft|m
* Summit - convert|3765|ft|m
* Vertical drop - convert|765|ft|m

* - lift serviced
* Advanced/expert - 25%
* Intermediate - 55%
* Beginner - 20%

* 2 quad chairs
* 2 triple chairs
* 2 double chairs
* 1 double rope tow


In 1933 the city of Seattle opened a city park called Municipal Park on the location which is now called Summit West. The city operated this area until 1940 when the town people thought Snoqualmie Pass was too far away to be running a city park. Operations were turned over to Ski Lifts, Inc. (owned by Jim Parker and Chauncey Griggs) who had been the concessionaire since 1937, the year they added rope tows to the park. Under the ownership of Ski Lifts, Inc. the area was renamed Snoqualmie Summit Ski Area because of its location at the top of the mountain pass. In 1942, Griggs and Parker sold Ski Lifts, Inc. to Rance Morris and Webb Moffett for $3,500. Ski Lifts, Inc. operated the ski area through 1998, acquiring Ski Acres in 1980, Alpental in 1983 and Hyak in 1992 then selling the entire operation to Booth Creek Ski Holdings Inc. in 1998.

ummit Central

Summit Central provides a variety of terrain and is typically the most crowded of the areas. It is also home to a large terrain park and half pipe, which hosts many events throughout the season.


* Base - convert|2840|ft|m
* Summit - convert|3865|ft|m
* Vertical drop - convert|1025|ft|m

* - lift serviced
* Advanced/expert - 25%
* Intermediate - 60%
* Beginner - 15%

* 1 high speed quad chair
* 2 triple chairs
* 4 double chairs
* 2 magic carpets
* 1 handle tow


In 1948, the "Ski Acres" ski area was opened by Ray Tanner. In 1980, Ski Lifts, Inc. acquired Summit Central and combined the operation with adjacent Summit West.

ummit East

A mix of intermediate and advanced runs, Summit East is where to go for glade skiing, cross-country and snowshoeing.

Summit East (formerly known as "Hyak") is the easternmost of the four base areas and is accessible via I-90 exit 54. Adjacent to the alpine ski area, the Hyak area has free cross-country skiing on groomed trails along Lake Keechelus on the Iron Horse Trail (maintained by the Washington State Parks).


* Base - convert|2610|ft|m
* Summit - convert|3710|ft|m
* Vertical drop - convert|1100|ft|m

* Advanced/expert - 40%
* Intermediate - 45%
* Beginner - 15%

* 2 double chairs


In 1959 a new ski area was developed on the north side of Hyak Mtn by 3 businessmen who formed the Hyak Ski Corporation. The company made some bad financial moves and in 1972 a ski lift accident that left a 14 year old skier with permanent damage, and subsequent lawsuit sent the area into bankruptcy in 1977. The area was purchased in 1980 by Pac West until they too filed bankruptcy in 1988. In 1992 the area was purchased by Ski Lifts, Inc who now owned all 4 local Snoqualmie Pass ski areas. In 1998 Booth Creek purchased the areas from Ski Lifts, Inc. and in 2007 sold all areas to CNL. Booth Creek signed a management agreement with CNL then in September 19, 2007 announced the management of the Snoqualmie Pass ski areas was sold to Boyne USA.

ummit Tubing Center

Across from Summit Central is the Summit Tubing Center. With thirteen machine groomed runs it is the largest west of the Missisippi. The runs are approximately five hundred feet long and are fun for all ages.


* Base - convert|2434|ft|m
* Summit - convert|2547|ft|m
* Vertical drop - convert|113|ft|m

* 2 Surface Tows


The Summit Tubing Center was formally run under the name Snow Flake Tubing Center until its purchase by Booth Creek.

External links

* [ Alpental website]
* [ Summit at Snoqualmie website]

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