Maverick, MT, Mar. 5, 2021

Resort and backcountry skiing and snowboarding in the western US and Canada, including our famous reader-submitted No-Bull Snow Reports.

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Maverick, MT, Mar. 5, 2021

Postby Tony Crocker » Mon Mar 08, 2021 12:24 am

Maverick Mt. rated to rival Turner as the most obscure stop on the trip. The appearance was not dissimilar, visible facing SE as we drove in with one top to bottom chair. The drive was through cattle country rather than the more wilderness feel of NW Montana.
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The ski area is at distance under the middle of the cow sign.

Maverick is busier than Turner. The much larger parking lot was about half full and there were quite a few local families, though not enough to create any lift line. There are enough people on weekends for Maverick to arrange live music on Saturday afternoons.
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At the base of the lift was this familiar sign with distances to many locations.
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But here the distances are to other Montana ski areas.

The weather was cooler than the previous two days, mainly due to thin overcast all morning and a light breeze. Maverick is not as steep as Turner and the exact orientation is probably ESE. So the skier’s left runs have some north exposure. The upper half of Thin Air was packed powder and with grooming the steeper Sleepy Hollow was similar.
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Rock n Roll, next to Sleepy Hollow, but groomed more than one day ago, had firmer snow.
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Ridge Run to skier’s right, faced into direct sun for its upper half, but never completely softened due to the cloudy morning.
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Lower down we could ski north facing T. Lee or Remely to the base.
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We took a snack break in the lodge. If Silver Mt’s owners felt compelled to change the name from Jackass Mt., surely the need was even more urgent at Maverick!
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Maybe that name would be appropriate in the Catskills, but not at 7,000 feet in Montana.

The only ungroomed run we skied was Ripper.
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This was north facing next to Thin Air and had winter snow for its upper two thirds.

We do have one caveat about Maverick. Here are stats on the trail map that don’t add up:
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The base elevation is 7,000. This is stated on the website and verified by my Vertech watch, which I calibrated on a 7,400 foot mountain pass that morning. But then I noticed my vertical count after 4 runs was 6,000, and after 7 runs was 10,500. The watch said the top elevation was 8,390 feet. :-k

Later we looked up Maverick on Google Earth.
Maverick_Altitude.jpg

8,440 is the top per Google Earth. I’ve seen many areas exaggerate their snowfall but this is the first time I’ve seen anyone add 500 feet to their vertical drop. And no, that lift is at the top of the mountain; there’s nothing to hike above it.

Today concluded the pandemic road trip targeting quieter but still interesting ski areas.

Since departing SLC on Jan.31, I skied 22 days at 20 different areas, 7 of them new and 5 days on the Indy Pass. Liz’ February skiing was interrupted by 11 days in Florida, but since Jan. 31 she skied 15 days at 14 different areas, 10 of them new and 8 days on the Loveland Pass.

The local Montana areas are so under the radar that they aren’t even in Powder Alliance or Indy Pass. But this is what we paid for TWO window lift tickets (one adult + one senior):
Turner Mt. $73
Montana Snowbowl $105
Discovery $94
Maverick $69
http://bestsnow.net
Ski Records
Season length: 21 months, Nov. 29, 2010 - July 2, 2012
Days in one year: 80 from Nov. 29, 2010 - Nov. 17, 2011
Season vertical: 1,610K in 2016-17
Season powder: 291K in 2011-12
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Re: Maverick, MT, Mar. 5, 2021

Postby jamesdeluxe » Mon Mar 08, 2021 6:06 am

Tony Crocker wrote:Today concluded the pandemic road trip targeting quieter but still interesting ski areas.

Thanks for taking us along. I planned a similar Montana road trip in the late 00s (and would've included Great Divide, just because) but was deterred by the amount of driving compared to the Alps in a similar time frame. Without the freedom of retirement, the distances out there are too much, at least for me.
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Re: Maverick, MT, Mar. 5, 2021

Postby Tony Crocker » Mon Mar 08, 2021 9:39 am

In 2014 flyover and his friend John flew into Spokane for a 4-day weekend and chased powder to Lost Trail, 2 days Discovery and Lookout. That itinerary is no big deal for a whole week and could also include a visit with Lono in Whitefish.

Whitefish, Discovery and Lost Trail are all about 5 hours from Spokane. But Silver, Lookout and Snowbowl are on the way. Our longest drives on days that included skiing were 2+ hours both before and after skiing at Turner, and 4+ hours to Sandpoint after skiing Mission Ridge. Both of those drives made sense because we spent 4 nights in Sandpoint and there is a convenience factor in not relocating the lodging base. None of the Montana ski days besides Turner had more than 2+ hours of driving.

Flying into Missoula cuts the driving time, but I don’t know how the airfares are from the East. I’ve flown out of Missoula twice and vaguely recall it was expensive in June but reasonable in March.

However, for a spring trip Discovery is the only Spokane accessible area with top level snow preservation. Silver and 49 Degrees North are majority north facing but lower. All the other places have majority sunny exposure.
http://bestsnow.net
Ski Records
Season length: 21 months, Nov. 29, 2010 - July 2, 2012
Days in one year: 80 from Nov. 29, 2010 - Nov. 17, 2011
Season vertical: 1,610K in 2016-17
Season powder: 291K in 2011-12
User avatar
Tony Crocker
 
Posts: 10916
Joined: Thu Sep 23, 2004 10:37 am
Location: Avatar: Charlotte Bay, Antarctica 2011
Location: Glendale, California

Re: Maverick, MT, Mar. 5, 2021

Postby q » Wed Apr 14, 2021 5:06 am

Thoroughly enjoyed reading about your trips Tony.

I've been so pissed off and not interested that I haven't checked in here or TGR forum hardly at all all winter. Hopefully next winter I will get back home to MT.
Q
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Location: Aberdeen, Scotland - Avatar: Primer Bowl, Loveland, CO


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