Get Ready for Winter in the Northwest

With fall in the Inland Northwest packed with awesome pre-season winter sports events, it’s time to get out there and hit the gear swaps, ski and snowboard films, winter kickoff parties and events, and skills clinics. Be stoked and ready when the snow flies!

October 10: The Essentials of Backcountry Skiing

Learn about ski, boot, and skin options for the backcountry, along with info on basic safety tools. 7 p.m. at Mountain Gear (2002 N. Division, Spokane).

October 11: Far Out—A Film by Teton Gravity Research

This year’s TGR ski and snowboard film with prizes and swag, sponsored by REI. 7:30 p.m. at Spokane’s Bing Crosby Theater.

October 18: The Connections Movement Backcountry Snowboarding Film “Yugen”

A fundraiser for Idaho Panhandle Avalanche Center (IPAC) sponsored by 7 p.m. at the Garland Theater. Ticket info:

October 20: 49 Degrees North Ski Patrol Swap

Find great deals on ski and snowboard equipment at northeast Washington’s annual swap, typically held at NE Washington Fairgrounds in Colville, Wash., and support 49’s volunteer ski patrol.

October 27: Volkswagen presents Warren Miller’s “Face of Winter”

With this year’s 69th installment, new and veteran athletes alike pay tribute to the man who started it all—the late, great Warren Miller. 6 and 9 p.m. showings at the Bing Crosby Theater downtown Spokane.

October 27: 49 Degrees North Job Fair

Work where you ski or snowboard this season or during the holidays at family-friendly 49 and score a discounted season pass and ticket deals at other mountains. 8:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. at the Calispell Creek Lodge up at the mountain. Info: Call Heather at 509.935.6649 x601.

October 26-28: Mt. Spokane Ski Patrol Ski Swap

The biggest swap around, with over 25,000 new and used ski and snowboard gear items for sale, including backcountry and Nordic equipment, benefitting the Mt. Spokane Ski Patrol. Friday drop-off of gear to sell, 3-8 p.m.; swap sale runs 9-5 Saturday and 9-noon Sunday (admission $5) at the Spokane Fair & Expo Center.

November 3: Winter Swap

North Idaho’s biggest ski and snowboard gear swap at Kootenai County Fairgrounds, Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. Register your gear to sell Friday, November 2 from 3-8 p.m. or shop starting at 9 a.m. Saturday.

 November 3: Mt. Spokane Ski & Snowboard Park Job Fair

Bring a resume if you have one and head up to Mt. Spokane to find your winter job working where you already plan to spend most of your winter skiing or snowboarding. 8 a.m.-12 p.m. at Lodge 2.

November 8: University of Idaho Outdoor Equipment Sale & Swap

This 44th annual sale put on by the Outdoor Program and UI Vandal Ski Team features all types of used winter and summer outdoor gear. Admission is free and a table to sell your gear is only $5. 6 p.m. at the UI Student Recreation Center’s MAC court in Moscow, Idaho. Info: 208-885-6810.

November 8: 5th Annual Pray for Snow Party at Perry Street Brewing

Beer specials, prizes for the best retro ski attire, raffle drawings, giveaways and swag, and a high-energy crowd stoked to celebrate another winter together. A benefit for T.E.A.M. Grant.

November 9-10: Snowlander Expo & Inlander Winter Party

Winter sports exhibitors, live music, brew festival, giveaways, and ski and snowboard gear sale.

November 10: Volkswagen presents Warren Miller’s “Face of Winter”

7 p.m. at Sandpoint’s Panida Theatre.

November 10: SARS (Schweitzer Alpine Racing School) Ski Swap

Sandpoint’s local swap is also the place to go if you didn’t find what you were looking for at other ski swaps around the region. Proceeds benefit the SARS’s ski racing and freeride programs. 9-2 at Bonner County Fairgrounds in Sandpoint.

November 11: Pray for Snow Bash at REI

Rally for snow with a retro ski outfit fashion show; live music; free pizza, cocoa, and roasted Twinkies; vintage ski films; prizes and more. 5-8 p.m. at the Spokane REI store. Sign up at

November 22-December 2: Winter Kickoff in Nelson, B.C.

Experience 10 days of events to get you stoked for winter in Nelson, B.C., North America’s best ski town! The Nelson/Kootenay region is nestled in the southeastern corner of British Columbia in a valley surrounded by epic mountain ranges, a magnificent expanse of lakeshore, steep evergreen valleys, and glacial snowfields. See how the Kootenay locals get ready for winter with local craft brewery crawls, food tours, live music, arts and culture, workshops, craft fairs, film screenings, and more.

October-November (anytime): Fall Getaway at Schweitzer Mountain Resort

Can’t wait until opening day to get up to Schweitzer? Book a room with a hot tub, have lunch or an early dinner at Chimney Rock Grill, and watch the mountain slowly shift from fall to winter. //


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