Bald Mountain (Idaho)
- This article is about the Bald Mountain of the Sun Valley Resort in Blaine County, Idaho.
For the modest ski area in Clearwater County, see Bald Mountain Ski Area.
Bald Mountain from Sun Valley Lake
|Location||Ketchum & Sun Valley
Blaine County, Idaho
|Nearest city||Twin Falls - 80 mi. (130 km)
Boise - 150 mi. (240 km)
Salt Lake - 330 mi. (530 km)
|Vertical||3400 ft - (1036 m)|
|Top elevation||9150 ft - (2789 m)|
|Base elevation||5750 ft - (1753 m)
|Skiable area||2054 acres - (8.3 km²)|
- 36% easiest
- 42% more difficult
- 22% most difficult
- 1 gondola (8 person)
- 7 hi-speed quads
- 3 triples
- 2 doubles
- 1 surface
|Snowfall||220 in. - (560 cm)|
|Snowmaking||645 acres - (2.6 km²)|
|Web site||Sun Valley.com|
Bald Mountain (9150 feet, 2789 m) is a mountain in south central Idaho, adjacent to the city of Ketchum in Blaine County. "Baldy" is the primary ski mountain of the Sun Valley ski resort, renowned for its lengthy runs of constant gradient, at varying levels of difficulty, with absence of wind.
In the Sun Valley's fourth year of operation (1939–40), Bald Mountain was opened for lift-served skiing with three single chairlifts, in a series, unloading at an elevation of 9020 feet (2749 m), just below the mountain summit. Baldy has one of the higher summits of the Smoky Mountains of Idaho, located in the Sawtooth National Forest. The wooded Smoky Mountains were named for their propensity for summer forest fires.
With a base elevation of 5750 feet (1753 m) along the Big Wood River at River Run, Baldy's vertical drop is 3400 feet (1036 m) along its northeast face. It is served by 14 ski lifts (1 eight-person gondola, 7 high-speed quads, 3 triples, 2 doubles, 1 surface); Baldy has more uphill capacity per skier than any other ski area. It has 75 runs with 2054 acres (8.31 km²) of on-piste skiing, 645 acres (2.61 km²) of which have snowmaking. The slope ratings are 36% easiest, 42% more difficult, and 22% most difficult. These ratings are relative, not absolute; much of the "easiest" terrain on Bald Mountain would be rated as "intermediate" at most ski areas, as the beginner areas are on the gentler and smaller Dollar Mountain.
In the NBC-TV miniseries, 10.5: Apocalypse, this mountain was believed to be an extinct volcano, until it erupted with devastating force. An avalanche of hot gases and ash cascaded down the mountain and buried everything, including the mountain's ski areas, and the towns of Sun Valley, Ketchum, and Hailey. Multiple rescue teams arrived at the scene and dug through the debris caused by Bald Mountain's eruption, looking for any survivors. Various anonymous internet film makers have tried to extend this episode. One plot contains a cosmic avalanche that completely wiped out the town of Ketchum and gave the dead "special powers". The plot was planned to then become a zombie apocalypse, however, due to lack of funding, was never completed.
- Sun Valley.com - Bald Mountain - ski report
- Idaho Summits.com - photo of Bald Mountain from Proctor Mountain
- MSRmaps.com - USGS topo map & aerial photo