Winter Wanderlust: Schweitzer Mountain

Photo Credit: Schweitzer Mountain Resort

Did you know that Schweitzer Mountain is the largest ski resort in both Idaho and Washington? With 2,900 acres of skiable terrain and renowned tree skiing, this is a destination that avid skiers will want to check out. Even if you don’t ski (like me!), there are so many activities to partake in at Schweitzer. Between snow tubing, Nordic skiing, scenic lift rides, relaxing massages, heli-skiing, snowmobiling, snow-biking, and the most gorgeous guided snowshoe hiking, there truly is something for everyone!

Schweitzer also offers mountain biking, zip-lining, horseback riding, disc golf, hiking, trail running, huckleberry picking, and so much more.

Where to Stay

Most excitingly, Schweitzer is debuting its first ski-in ski-out boutique hotel this season, Humbird! Featuring contemporary style hotel rooms, a 50-seat restaurant and bar Crow’s Bench, and a Glass Room with stunning views, Humbird is sure to impress. The hotel was designed by Portland-based Skylab Architecture and showcases the next generation of mountain architecture. Set above the quaint town of Sandpoint, Humbird offers a sleek take on the classic ski lodge, with unparalleled views of the mountains and nearby Lake Pend Oreille, the largest lake in Idaho.

“Humbird represents a real evolution in the lodging scene in North Idaho,” said Tom Chasse, President and Chief Executive Officer of Schweitzer. “We took great care to build a beautiful hotel that will connect guests directly to the outdoor experiences they come here to enjoy. Equally important, we worked to ensure that Humbird will meet the needs of modern travelers by providing spaces where they can relax, recharge, refuel and even stay plugged in as needed.”

Photo Credit: Humbird

Every room at Humbird features a window seat set against a panoramic window, offering spectacular views. Designed with travelers’ comfort in mind, rooms at Humbird come equipped with incredibly thoughtful items such as boot dryers, air purifiers, and white noise machines. You will also find a pair of binoculars in every room to take further advantage of the sweeping views.

The Itinerary / Where to Eat + Drink

Schweitzer is approximately a six hour drive from Seattle, so leaving sometime mid-morning will get you there just before dinner time. Toward the end of your route, you will find the charming town of Sandpoint, Idaho, which is just thirty minutes from Schweitzer. This is a great place to stop for dinner and grab a beer at a local brewery.

We recommend Matchwood Brewing Company, a neighborhood brewery specializing in a diverse flight of high-quality handcrafted English, German and American ales. Their Talus Hazy IPA is delicious, and goes perfectly with the Brisket Philly Cheese. Throw in the Buffalo Cauliflower if you’re feeling extra hungry. Matchwood has live music on Friday nights, which we loved. A couple of other dinner options in Sandpoint are MickDuff’s Brewing Company, Utara Brewing Company and Curry House, and Laughing Dog Brewing.

Following dinner in Sandpoint, head to Schweitzer and check in to Humbird, which is very centrally located in the village. One of our favorite things about the village at Schweitzer is how close everything is in proximity to each other. It won’t take you more than five minutes to walk anywhere. Explore the village if you have time, or simply rest up in your room at Humbird and prepare for the day ahead.

Photo Credit: Schweitzer Mountain

After a good night’s sleep, start your morning’s adventures with a breakfast bagel and a coffee from Mojo Coyote Cafe. What to do next is up to you! In the winter months, skiing and snowshoeing are both great options. During the warmer months, we’d recommend a scenic hike or an adrenaline-filled morning of ziplining. Whatever you choose, you will be sure to catch some beautiful views!

For lunch, pop into Gourmandie, a specialty foods market located in the village that features gourmet sandwiches and craft beer and wine. This is the perfect spot for a little afternoon retreat. After lunch, you can either hit the slopes for a few more hours, or partake in one of the many other activities that Schweitzer has to offer. For a more relaxing afternoon, treat yourself to a massage at Schweitzer Massage. Next up, head to Taps Bar for some live music and drinks before dinner! Taps Bar also happens to have a great view of the mountain and Lake Pend Oreille.

Head back to Humbird to have dinner at their fabulous restaurant, Crow’s Bench. With a name inspired by life in the Old West, Crow’s Bench is a place for loved ones to gather and swap stories of the day’s events. “Like a group of cackling birds, they’ve spent the day swooping around Schweitzer and now find themselves ensconced, like crows on a bench, at Humbird’s bar and eatery, hooting about their adventures,” as described on the Humbird website. You really can’t go wrong with anything on the menu, but some of our personal favorites were the Foie Gras, the Bison, Elk, and Wild Boar Meatballs, and the Roast Game Hen. This is a phenomenal dinner that you won’t soon forget.

The Bar at Crow’s Bench. Photo Credit: Humbird

To end your fun-filled trip, stop at Bluebird Bakery in Sandpoint on your way back to Seattle. They have some of the best croissants we have ever had. If you have extra time, explore all of the cute shops in downtown Sandpoint!

We hope you have the best time, and that these recommendations were helpful! Happy traveling!