From the 6,820-foot elevation at Mission Ridge Ski & Board Resort, the peaks of Mount Adams and Mount Rainier are visible to the southeast. The view is the first of several spectacular vistas at the resort, where 36 trails span across 2,000 acres and sunshine and dry snow occur regularly. Trails in the Cascade Mountains range from double-black-diamond plunges at the top of the mountain to easy green runs for beginners. The B.24 Terrain Park and JIBerator Rope Tow Park feature freestyle terrain for skiing and boarding, along with rails, boxes, and jumps. Experienced slope-conquerors offer lessons for fledgling mountaineers, and the resort brims with shopping, dining, and lodging options nearby for long-term visitors. Wineries and breweries are also nearby, and Mission Ridge Ski & Board Resort is 19 kilometres from Wentachee and 56 kilometres from Leavenworth.
Alki Kayak Tours and her sister store, Mountain to Sound Outfitters, equip guests with all the tools necessary to delve into Puget Sound’s surrounding wilderness regardless of season. Authorized dealers of goods from outdoor brands including Rossignol, Nordica, Snap Dragon, and Boardworks SUP, Mountain to Sound Outfitters’ knowledgeable equipment masters can outfit expeditions bound for skiing trips to Mount Rainier or full-contact LARPing in Olympic National Park. Alki Kayak Tours keeps adventures moving with vehicle rentals ranging from kayaks and paddleboards to fishing boats and bikes. Guided sea-kayak and paddleboard tours meander through Puget Sound during warmer months, introducing adventurers to the Emerald City’s fragile natural beauty and the mindful guides’ various methods of preserving it.
Mini Mountain helps people of all ages experience the thrill of outdoor extreme sports, even if they can't be outside. Thanks to the training center's unique downhill treadmill-like machine, visitors can ski and snowboard year-round—they just happen to be indoors. The wide, sloping treadmill features a smooth surface and runs on a perpetual uphill loop, mimicking the sensation of gliding down a snowy slope. Private lessons help students master their maneuvers and turns, relying on guidance from professional instructors and the same rental gear they'd use on real slopes.
But the students sometimes still venture outdoors—those who complete enough indoor work are eligible to join the small-group skiing lessons that explore the Summit at Snoqualmie. And rock-climbing day camps travel to various nearby cliffs, so students can work on improving their climbing skills and beating mountain goats at staring contests.
Within a 2,000-square-foot shop, Backdrop Sports maintains and sells equipment that can turn the area’s roads and backcountry into outdoor playgrounds. Ready to fix up rides that tackle snow, dirt, or asphalt, the crew of experienced technicians performs tune-ups that help to renew skis and snowboards and improve gear performance. Leaving no detail untouched, they tune skis and snowboards by hand, waxing and grinding bases before giving each board a much-needed hug. Paying similar attention to bicycles, mechanics tighten, adjust, and lubricate everything bikes need to operate smoothly on challenging trails. The staff also can build custom bikes, cut new splitboards, and help customers navigate the store's stock of men’s and women’s apparel, mountain bikes, and snowboards.
In 1960, Sally Strand, a Northshore District High School science teacher, had a dream of sharing her love of skiing with her students. This led her to start the program that would eventually become Mohan Skiing & Boarding. Today, the non-profit ski school services six school districts with lessons, leadership training, and scholarships for any youngsters hoping to learn to ski. Led by veteran skiing gurus Rob Stimmel and John Mohan, the academy’s staff leads instructional expeditions on the snow-swathed slopes of Snoqualmie Summit Central, teaching students of all ages how to carve through powder, zoom down steeps, and use giant icicles as makeshift ski poles. Guests can schedule a private lesson for one-on-one instruction or register for one of their weekly group sessions, which range from weekend lessons for tykes ages 3–5 and Thursday executive ski sessions for adult alpinists.
Nestled next to the rolling terrain of Mt. Rainier National Park, Crystal Mountain caters to snow people with acres of downhill escapades. The mountain welcomes snow-slingers and extreme gondola-riders with a jib park and a multitude of trails that are suitable mostly for intermediate and advanced skiers and boarders. Expert plank-gliders can make good on their bravado by scaling advanced trails like Sunnyside and Snorting Elk, rugged descents into pools of frozen spätzle. A one-day ski ticket grants alpine riders daytime access to the downhill runs of Crystal Mountain from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. during the late-spring season (April 21 to June 12).