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Hit the powder at Mt. Baker Ski Area, regional resorts

When it comes to playing in the snow, Washington state skiers and snowboarders have a lot of places they can go to in the region.

Here’s a look at the offerings from some of the most popular in the state — our own Mt. Baker Ski Area, as well as two other Washington state resorts closest to Whatcom County. And then there’s Whistler Blackcomb, the premier ski and snowboard resort in British Columbia.

MT. BAKER SKI AREA

This winter the Legendary Banked Slalom, Mt. Baker’s most famous event, turns 30 and the ski area plans to celebrate in style.

They’ve added a fourth day to the festivities, scheduled for Feb. 19-22, and are planning to serve up barbecued salmon and oysters, General Manager Duncan Howat said.

The event is a celebration of snowboarding culture and Baker’s prominent role in helping the sport go mainstream.

This year’s event will include a legends race, where winners of past events will compete. To participate in the race, boarders must qualify or win a lottery. A qualifying race is Jan. 19. The event field frequently includes pros and Olympic athletes from around the world competing on the same course as locals.

The ski area is offering a new program called Powder Pups, geared toward the families of children ages 4 to 6. Up to four adults can be designated as being in a Power Pup family for an enrolled child, and then up to two of those adults are eligible for half-price lift tickets starting at 11 a.m.

“It allows families to come up, spend a little less money and get some good, fun time on the snow together. And for the adults to get a little free riding in too,” said Amy Trowbridge, marketing director for the ski area.

Lift tickets: $57, $40 youth (11-15), $30 child (7-10), $49 senior (60-69), $36 super senior (70 and older), children 6 and younger are free. Fifth-graders also can register online to ski free. (All prices include sales tax.) Prices are reduced on weekdays.

Season pass: $790, $690 full-time college student, $535 ages 16-17, $325 ages 13-15, $230 ages 7-12; $470 ages 60-69, $160 ages 70 and older.

Lifts: 8 fixed grip quads and two surface tows.

Trails: 38 marked runs (24 percent beginner, 45 percent intermediate, 31 percent advanced).

Snow line: 360-671-0211.

More information: 360-734-6771; mtbaker.us.

STEVENS PASS

Lift tickets: $69, $49 youth (7-15), $15 senior (70 and older), free for children (6 and younger). Prices are reduced on non-holiday weekdays and non-peak weekends.

Lifts: 10 (two high-speed quads, one quad, four triples, three doubles).

Trails: 37 (11 percent beginner, 54 percent intermediate, 35 percent advanced).

More information: 206-812-4510; stevenspass.com.

SUMMIT AT SNOQUALMIE

Lift tickets: $64, $44 youth (ages 7-12) and seniors (ages 62-69), $12 children (6 and younger) and seniors (70 and older).

Lifts: 24 (three high-speed quads, two fixed quads, three triples, 10 doubles, six surface lifts).

Trails: 65 runs (14 percent beginner, 45 percent intermediate, 41 percent advanced).

More information: 425-434-7669; summitatsnoqualmie.com.

WHISTLER BLACKCOMB

Lift tickets: Prices vary depending on dates and whether purchases are made online or full price at the window.

Lifts: 37 (three high-speed gondolas, the PEAK 2 PEAK Gondola, one high-speed six passenger, 13 high-speed quads, four triple chairs and 15 surface lifts).

Trails: Over 200 runs (18 percent beginner, 55 percent intermediate, 27 percent advanced).

More information: 1-800-766-0449; whistlerblackcomb.com.

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