Whitefish Mountain Resort

Whitefish, Montana | C.1947

Photo Credit: John Turner

“Boo!” Ghosts aren’t a sight you’d expect on an ordinary powder day on the slopes, but Whitefish Mountain Resort and its resident Snow Ghosts are anything but ordinary – in fact, they’re more science than spooky.

This resort in Northwest Montana is nestled in the only corner of the world where Snow Ghosts can be found. Only highly specific weather conditions can create this phenomenon — and while they may look like soft, pillowy ghosts, they’re just trees covered in a very special layer of ice!

The artists behind Snow Ghosts are the winds, clouds, and fog that frequently roll across the ridges of Whitefish. Even though these clouds are colder than the freezing temperature of water, it’s an incredible bit of science that prevents them from solidifying and thus leads them to shape the mountains’ spirit friends.

The region’s unique weather creates special water droplets within the clouds that can remain in a liquid state down to minus 40 degrees F, meaning they only freeze when they contact a solid surface — like a tree! Over time, ice layers upon the mountain’s trees, sculpting these curious, slightly spooky, but ever-so-friendly skiing companions.

So while your past ski adventures may have been in search of the softest powder or the most epic backcountry, only one place qualifies as the most supernatural — no paranormal activity required.

Written By: Drew Tweedy

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