Fall Hit List: Bridger Ridge Runs

Bridger Bowl, Backcountry Skiing, Bozeman, Montana

Fall Hit List: Bridger Ridge Runs

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Pre-season ski-area laps. 

If you're like us, you get the itch starting around mid-October. By November, you're a fiend, tracking storms and praying for a northwest flow. One way we keep from going insane with powder fever is pre-season Bridger laps. They're a great way to get some turns in before the lifts start spinning, and they're on our Fall Hit List.

Who: Skiers. If you live for arching turns down wintry, white slopes, then you should invest in a touring setup and extend your season on the front and back ends. Touring at Bridger isn't for those seeking solitude or untracked snow. The "secret" is out and these days, you're more likely to be parking in C Lot than skiing fresh lines. Unless you get up early—as the saying goes, the early birds get the turns.

Uphill Pursuits, Bozeman, Montana

What: A taste of the good life, a bit of winter for those who can't wait. While the west side of the Bridgers looks largely snow-free, the east side is buried under at least two feet of snow. Conditions aren't mid-winter by any stretch, but laps help you get in shape and knock the rust off. Plus you can test gear on inconsequential terrain to dial in your system if you plan on touring all season. If you're new to town, this is a good time to familiarize yourself with the mountain, keeping in mind that the ski area is not open and the terrain is not being patrolled. If you go, you're on your own and need to be familiar with avalanche-safety skills. The entire upper mountain is avalanche terrain, and conditions vary day to day, and even hour to hour. Play it safe and stick to the lower mountain if you're unsure of your skills. 

Bridger Bowl, Backcountry Skiing, Bozeman, Montana

When: Bridger is scheduled to open for business on December 6, meaning you have about three weeks to get after it. But why delay? This weekend looks promising for some mild weather, and the snow should soften up in the afternoons for some soft turns. It won't be blower pow, but at least you'll be out enjoying the mountain. If you do go on the weekend, expect a parking lot party—a couple of Saturdays ago looked and sounded like a Cat-Griz tailgate. 

Bridger Bowl, Backcountry Skiing, Bozeman, Montana

Where: Sixteen miles north of town at a little place called Bridger Bowl—heard of it? Thought so. If it's your first time out this season, head for the top of the Alpine chair and cruise the long green and blue runs back to base. If you're looking for a longer tour, head to the top of Pierre's Knob.

Bridger Bowl, Backcountry Skiing, Bozeman, Montana

Why: Because skiing is awesome. Even if Bridger is "crowded" and the snow isn't fresh, it's still a great way to ease into the season. 

And pre-season laps at Bridger are on our Fall Hit List. If you go, be sure to enter our gear giveaway by tagging us on Instagram or Facebook (#OBHitList). This week's winner gets a Saddle Peak pack from Mystery Ranch.

 Mystery Ranch, Saddle Peak Pack

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