Helpful Planning Tips for Families
Crystal Mountain knows how important it is for a child’s first visit to be a good and memorable one. Here is a list of helpful hints and offerings we provide to make your family outing a success:
Download our Base Area Map to get acquainted with our services and/or locations.
Once the car and kids are packed, your last worry should be about loading and unloading your gear, equipment and children at the resort. Drive all the way up front to our Family- Load/Unload Zone just steps from the ticket booths, restrooms and lifts. This short term parking zone offers an easy solution to unloading the cars and kids and eliminates the shuttle ride for the whole family. Once unloaded, the driver can quickly park the car and catch a shuttle ride back up to meet the rest of the group. Same goes for the end of the day!
The outdoor ticket kiosks are located just steps from the unload zone and shuttle drop off area. If you are renting equipment and or taking a lesson, proceed directly to the Rental Shop of Snowsports School and purchase everything you need there (including tickets for non-lesson takers or renters). Paper tickets will be issued with a bar code that must be attached to the outside of your jacket and/or ski pants. Ticket checkers will scan each persons ticket upon arrival to each lift. Please make sure the appropriate ticket makes it on the appropriate person (ie: Child, Youth, Adult, Senior). Learn more.
Public restrooms and small attached lounge areas are located just past the ticket kiosks and base terminal of the Mt. Rainier Gondola in the lowest level of the Day Lodge. These are ADA accessible and offer baskets in each stall to hold your gloves, hats, goggles etc. Mirrors, automatic faucets, electrical outlets and hand dryers are standard. There are also restrooms available in Kids Club (at the base area), the Summit House (at the top of the Gondola) and the Campbell Basin Lodge (located at the top of the Forest Queen Express Lift).
Lockers & Ski Check
Coin operated lockers are available outside of the main restrooms on the lowest level of our Day Lodge as well as inside the Rental Shop. Slope-side ski and bag check is offered near the base of the Discovery Chairlift.
ATM Cash Machine
All Crystal Mountain operated outlets accept all major credit cards as payment but a cash machine is also located on the Chinook Level of the Day Lodge (near the elevator nook), if needed.
Ages 4-6 are welcome in Kids Club for ski lessons. Half-day and full-day packages are available, based on availability. This program offers the perfect combination of learning, play and supervision. Learn More.
Rental equipment is available for all ages including skis, ski boots, poles, snowboards, snowboard boots & helmets. Snowshoes, ski coats & pants are also available for rent for adults. Learn more.
Restaurants & Hot Chocolate
There are an array of dining options once at the resort:
The Cascade Grill in the Day Lodge offers children favorites such as sliced pizza, buttered noodles, French fries, chicken strips and of course a delicious hot chocolate.
The Bullwheel is a sit down restaurant at the top of the Day Lodge with a wide selection of adult and child classics including a cheeseburger and fries, macaroni and cheese, chicken strips and a chicken sandwich for around $8.00.
The mid-mountain Campbell Basin Lodge is only accessible to intermediate and advanced level skiers and snowboarders and offers an upscale cafeteria experience with an Asian station, soup, salad & chili station, pasta station and a Kids Corner.
The Summit House Restaurant is an upscale sit-down restaurant located at the top of the Mt. Rainier Gondola (non-skiers and beginners are welcome with a gondola ride to get you back to the base area). A kids menu is available and a rich specialty made hot cocoa as well!
The Chinook Café at the base lodge offers the best hot chocolate around. After a fun day on the slopes, every child deserves a belly-warming sweet treat with whip cream on top and mom and dad deserve a fresh pressed espresso for the drive home!
If you so choose to bring your own lunch, there is a Brown Bag area of the lodge to enjoy your outside food.
It shouldn’t be intimidating for children and families to venture out on the wide open slopes. We have slow family safe zones that are a monitored by ski patrol to allow children and families to gain some confidence without the advanced skiers and riders buzzing through. Learn more.
Beginner Terrain & Lifts
Our easiest “Green” runs are located on the Discovery and Quicksilver chairlifts. All mountain children tickets are FREE (ages 10 and under) with paid adults. A beginner-only adult Discovery lift ticket is also available if you don’t think your child will advance past that beginner lift in one day. If they surprise you, simply pay the difference to upgrade and have access to the whole mountain, including the gondola for a scenic ride. If venturing onto a chairlift is not on your 9:00 a.m. agenda, try the Magic Carpet for a short swift lift up a very gentle slope to get your child used to slipping and sliding before advancing onto the lifts. The Magic Carpet ride is located slope-side, next to the Mountain Shop. Once you and your children are ready to advance past the Discovery and/or Quicksilver lifts, try Queens Run on the Forest Queen lift or Broadway to Lower Arwines from the Chinook Express lift.
Feel free to call us with any questions (8:30 a.m.- 4:30 p.m. daily) : 1-360-663-3050.
There is also a daily recorded message with current weather conditions, daily events and happenings that we recommend calling as early as 5:00 a.m. each morning: 1-888-754-6199
Advice & Tips
Read a great blog by A Brave Ski Mom for general tips and advice on skiing with your children