The Summer of the Staycation

Have you altered your Summer 2020 plans? Or, maybe you have yet to start to planning. Now more than ever, we are fortunate to live in a place where people spend their vacations, and we can take advantage of the amenities without having to pack or spend money to get here. Yet sometimes it’s nice to get a change of scenery, and if you have kids, it is an adventure for them to go someplace new.

So here’s a thought… Plan a getaway to the mountain.

When I first moved to town for this job, I rented a place on Winter Lane for the months of April and May. I lodged in the upper unit of one of the first homes built on the mountain, Manchester Upper, named for the owners Bob and Joanne Manchester*. I could walk down the hill one way to my office in the Hibernation House, or in the other way to the Bierstube.

I was excited to be in a place on the mountain. It helped me to connect to the place I was about to be a part of, and it was fun to live in a true mountain setting. There’s something about staying on a mountain, in a house with trees all around, or a cozy condo with a balcony overlooking the valley or the slopes. Being closer to nature, it brings tranquility to the soul.

While I loved the retro feel of Manchester Upper, and it reminded me of places I’d stay in my youth, we offer a variety of accommodations in all sizes and price points including private residences and townhomes, condominiums and budget hotel rooms. You can browse the selection on skiwhitefish.com/lodging. You should be pleasantly surprised to find how the pricing compares with the average summer rates in Whitefish.

If you had a Winter 2019/20 Season Pass, you save even more. Passholders, just as you receive a 20% off discount on lodging for friends and family in the winter, you get it in the summer too, AND you can use it for your own staycation. (If you have friends and family that are still coming, you can get them the discount too.)  

Imagine packing up the car with hiking gear, the bikes, a cooler with your favorite beverages, and a few other bags of the family’s favorite foods. We have a small market up here in case you forget anything. Once you park your car, you can get around most of the mountain on foot or bike. If your lodging is a little further away from the village or the Base Lodge, we have vehicles to give you a lift.

Lodging up here is defined by its location relative to winter: ski-in/ski-out, ski-in/walk-out, short walk to slopes, shuttle to slopes. What’s fun about summer is that you can bring your bikes, and get around to where you want to go. Or, go off-road and bike on some of our cross-country trails (pick up a trail map at check-in).

While you are spending a few days up here on vacation you have plenty of time to take advantage of all the activities we offer in the summer. Again, 2019/20 passholders you get some summer perks so be sure to pack your ski passes! They get you on the Scenic Lift all summer long as well as some great deals on the Whitefish Bike Park, Alpine Slides, Zip Line Tours, Aerial Adventure Park, Summer Tubing and more.

For those who do not have a winter pass, you receive discounts on summer activities for staying with us, we even have special packages set up if you cannot decide: Zip & Stay, Bike & Stay, or the Family Fun Package that get you discounts on both lodging and activities.

There’s plenty to do for several days. One day can be entirely dedicated to exploring nature on foot. There’s still snow on top of the mountain so the upper sections of the trail are covered in snow however, there’s an entire network of trails to explore on the lower mountain, around and below the Base Lodge.

Private homes, townhomes and condos come with fully equipped kitchens, and our value hotel, The Hibernation House, comes with breakfast. The Base Lodge, Summit House, and Bierstube (opens July 1, serves 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily) have you covered for lunch. Café Kandahar (open 6-9 p.m. Wednesday –Sunday with take-out available), and Hellroaring Saloon (opens July 7, 5 p.m. to close Tuesday-Saturday) offer dinner service.

Whether you are a local non-skier, or a dedicated passholder, get to know your mountain a little better by exploring it in the summer!

* A little mountain history about the Manchesters: Robert “Bob” Manchester (1919-1999) was born in New York, moved to Missoula to attend the University of Montana but his studies were interrupted by WWII. He served in the 10th Mountain Division, returned and was a member of the U of M ski team. Later he was a smokejumper with the US Forest Service. Bob and Joanne built their home in the 1950’s. Their three sons all participated in the ski racing program at Big Mountain. Bob served on the board of directors of the Alpinglow Inn. Joanne and her family still come and stay.