The state of Montana offers an abundance of world-class recreational opportunities, and certainly downhill skiing is near the top of this list. Craig Hergert’s masterful photography, accompanied by Brian Hurlbut’s friendly narratives, beautifully illustrate the state’s 16 public ski areas, along with one private facility.
“For me, skiing in Montana is the way skiing was back in the 1940s … Simple, beautiful, and quiet,” writes famous ski filmmaker and winter sports enthusiast Warren Miller in the book’s foreword.
Hergert conceived the idea for this project about eight years ago, and began visiting as many ski areas as time and money would afford. Well into the project, he realized that his photos would need descriptions to fully capture their essence, so he approached his friend, professional writer Hurlbut, to take on that part of the project.
Their combined talents offer readers a visual perspective, as well as useful information, on what each site has to offer. Breathtaking aerial shots of snow-covered mountains are apt to make skiers wish for another round of winter.
The state boasts a few deluxe resort facilities, but for the most part, small to mid-size hills offer families and school groups lift prices and slopes geared to their interests, with plenty of atmosphere and friendly service. Learn about Bridger Bowl’s famous “Cold Smoke” powder, marvel at the tenacity behind Montana’s oldest ski hill, Showdown, and admire Whitefish Mountain Resort’s surreal snow ghosts.
The book is certain to inspire winter road trips for skiers and boarders, while the dazzling photographs and historical tidbits will keep armchair enthusiasts entertained.
Hergert, an award-winning photographer, owns Montana Panoramic gallery and studio in Bozeman. Hurlbut is the author of the Insider’s Guide to Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks, a frequent contributor to several magazines, and director of the Arts Council of Big Sky.
Their handsome new collaboration was published by Great Wide Open Publishing of Bozeman and sells for $60.
– Judy Shafter