Improving Your Cross Country Skiing Experience

Dave Pecunies Photography

The town of Big Sky, and Big Sky country in general, is a mecca for Nordic skiing. Between Lone Mountain Ranch and the miles of groomed ski trails around the greater Gallatin County region, nordic skiing, and specifically skate skiing, is one of the best activities for getting into the woods and away from the crowds, fast. But unlike downhill skis, skate skis require more frequent waxing and at-home care. This may sounds overwhelming, but don’t worry; waxing is one of the sublime pleasures of being a nordic skier. Here’s a quick primer on the basics of waxing skate skis:

Lone Mountain Ranch

Lone Mountain Ranch

What you’ll need:

  • Ski vice or clamps, homemade or store bought
  • Glide wax
  • Scraper
  • Waxing iron
  • Cork block

Tuning supplies available at local shops like Grizzly Outfitters, East Slope Outdoors and Lone Mountain Sports. They also offer tuning services if you don’t want to do it yourself.

The Process:

Before being stowed away every spring, skate skis should receive a coat of “storage wax”, which needs to be removed every fall. After affixing your skis to your chose work surface, set your wax iron to medium heat and begin slowly heating the base of your ski. As the iron and the ski get hotter, the existing wax with turn ghostly white and stand out. Scrap off all the old wax to give yourself a new start.

After the ski is stripped and ready for wax, it’s time to give your skis their first coat of glide wax for the winter. Begin the waxing process by holding your wax block at a steep downward angle to the face of the iron, allowing hot wax to drip onto the ski.

Cover the ski with little blotches of wax from tip to tail. After the ski is fairly covered, begin spreading the wax around the ski’s base by running your iron in circular motions across the ski’s base. You will see the wax melt and spread. Continue this waxing motion until the ghostly white wax covers the ski base entirely. Because nordic skis have relatively soft bases, be careful to not melt the ski’s base.

Now it’s time to scrape. Hold your wax scraper at 45-degree angle to the ski as you pull the scraper towards yourself. You’ll see satisfying curls of excess wax pull from the ski. Once the excess is pulled from the ski, the bases should appear shiny and smooth. If you want to put some additional elbow grease into the work, buff the skis bases with a cork block to work the wax into the base.

Now get your skiing clothes on and get out the door!


Photos © Dave Pecunies Photography


Roundup: Slope Side Homes

Slope Side Homes in Big Sky Montana


There’s nothing like skiing right from your front or back door and onto the slopes. Big Sky, Montana is the ideal place for slope side ski homes, with a variety of options, ranging from custom homes and cabins to condo units. Here are some great ski-in-ski-out Big Sky homes that are on the market right now.

90 Diamond Hitch, Moonlight Basin, Montana (click to view YouTube video)
The quintessential Big Sky Cabin. This majestic log home is perched on a wooded promontory with panoramic views to the Spanish Peaks. Locati designed and masterfully created by an engineer/owner, this home exudes Old World warmth and charm while offering the highest standard of finish and impeccable attention to detail. The home is being sold completely furnished including artwork. Ski access is great to both ski resorts.

11 Saddle Ridge Rd., Big Sky, Montana
Saddle Ridge Townhomes are a delightful place to spend your leisure time while enjoying the amenities at Moonlight in Big Sky. This is a beautifully furnished 3BR/2.5BA townhome with incredible mountain views. There is a spacious master suite and the master bath area has been redesigned by McPhie Cabinetry Bath Design out of Bozeman. You have 2 decks on which to relax, a hot tub and you are within close proximity to the Moonlight Basin Lodge, with ski access Big Sky Resort.

39 Renegade Rd., Big Sky, Montana
Sophistication and warmth personify this Cowboy Heaven home. This is where rustic meets luxury. Five bedrooms and seven and half bathrooms makes this home an ideal basecamp for your winter and summer activities. Perfect ski-in, ski-out access on the Natawista ski run, straight to the Six Shooter lift. The 6,300 sq.ft. home is a pleasing combination of reclaimed wood and chiseled stone with custom, craftsman finishes and abundant views of the Spanish Peaks.

For more information about these and other ski-in-ski-out properties, contact Big Sky Sotheby’s International Realty today at 406.995.2211.

Thinking about listing your property this summer?

List with Big Sky Sotheby’s International Realty by May 1st and receive premium placement (1/3 page or larger) in our upcoming View The Collection Volume 7.

The Collection Volume 7

Top 5 reasons why listing with us is the right choice.

1- Big Sky Sotheby’s International Realty is the industry leader in marketing listings in the Big Sky and surrounding area.

2- Our real estate brokers and associates are local residents with in-depth knowledge of the Big Sky real estate market and ALL of its ski resorts.

3- Our professionals have experience dating back to the earliest real estate developments in Big Sky with expertise in all price ranges, assisting everyone from the first time buyer to the seasoned developer.

4- The Sotheby’s International Realty and Auction House networks provide global listing exposure- from New York to Hong Kong.

5- Our 2015 marketing plan delivers over 1 billion impressions worldwide with exclusive media partnerships including The New York Times, Architectural Digest, Financial Times and Wall Street Journal.

To register for this free offer: email us or call 406.995.2211 or 406.995.2244.

Home Roundup: Hunting Properties

Hunting Properties

updated 10/09/15

In the fall, visitors and residents enjoy a wide range of hunting opportunities in Big Sky and beyond, whether it’s big game they’re after, such as deer, antelope, elk, or moose, or small game, such as birds. But how about having your own private Big Sky Country hunting property, something many passionate hunters have probably dreamt about since they started tracking animals. Imagine your own private hunting cabin tucked back into the land you own and love? Imagine walking right out of that back door and directly into the woods.

Here we present some of the finest hunting properties on the market in Montana.

Grizzly Meadows, Emigrant, Montana
Located in the beautiful Paradise Valley, near the North Entrance to Yellowstone National Park, wildlife abounds on this 626-acre retreat that sits between Emigrant and Gardiner, Montana. Bordering National Forest lands for almost 2 miles, hunters can set out right from the 11,000+ square-foot, 6-bedroom main home owned by Nascar racing team owner Richard Childress. The retreat-style property is perfect for trophy hunting, world-class fishing, hiking, horseback riding, snow shoeing, cross country skiing, four-wheeling, and snowmobiling. The views from all angles include Tom Miner Basin, Yankee Jim Canyon, the Yellowstone River, and the Absaroka Mountain Range. A true outdoorsman’s luxury retreat.

Wolf Creek Homestead, Wolf Creek, Montana
Located Between Helena and Great Falls, Montana, this grand mountain log home on 320 private acres is nestled into the timbered hillside, surrounded by wild lands. This outdoorsman’s dream home has plenty of storage for toys in the well-insulated 3-car garage and shop, along with hunting access and year-round springs and creeks running through. The 3-bedroom main house features stellar mountain views, hardwood floors, and detailed finishes throughout. Located right next to the creek is a log guest cabin with propane heat and no running water—the perfect accommodations for the hard-core hunters out there.

Gallatin Canyon North 5CN
Looking for your dream home in Big Sky? This fabulous 2,124 Sq. Ft., 3 BR, 2 BA home in the Gallatin Canyon. Located five miles from the entrance to Big Sky, near the Gallatin National Forest, no covenants or zoning! Enjoy pristine views of the surrounding mountains while sitting on your wrap around deck and the might Gallatin River. This home also has vaulted ceilings, jacuzzi tubs, attached garage and a guest apartment. Back door access to hiking, hunting, and skiing.

Big Sky by the Numbers

Big Sky, Montana : By the NumbersBig Sky, Montana is many things to many people. It’s home, retreat, outdoor oasis, ski Mecca, summer paradise, neighbor to Yellowstone National Park, and the list goes on.  Although somewhat small in population, it’s large in community feel and even bigger when it comes to things to do, especially in the great outdoors.

Here’s how Big Sky breaks down by the numbers…

The varied elevations in the Big Sky area, from Canyon to top of Lone Peak, are often explored within a day, whether it’s hiking to the top in the summer or riding the Lone Peak Tram in the winter.
Big Sky Meadow Village: 6,200 ft.
Big Sky Mountain Village: 7,500 ft.
Top of Lone Peak: 11,166 ft.

On of the perks of Big Sky’s location is the fact that it feels remote and undiscovered, yet it is located between two populous areas: Yellowstone National Park (West Yellowstone) and Bozeman.
Big Sky to Bozeman: 44 miles
Big Sky to Bozeman International Airport: 38 miles
Big Sky to Yellowstone National Park Boundary: 19 miles
Big Sky to Yellowstone National Park West Entrance: 48 miles

The People
Big Sky is a strong community of folks, both year round and part time residents, that thrives on the laid back, yet sophisticated and action packed Montana lifestyle.
Year round: 3,100 approx.
Peak Seasons: Up to 15,000, including day visitors
Big Sky School District Enrollment (K-12): 303

Bars & Restaurants: More than 30 and counting
Shops: More than 40 and counting

May: 60-degree on average
July & August: 70’s to 80’s during the day, 60’s at night on average
Winter: 25-degrees on average

Skiing Statistics
400+ inches of annual snowfall
5,800 skiable acres
4,350 feet of vertical drop
250 named runs covering over 110 miles on three separate mountains
22 Chair Lifts
7 Surface Lifts
9 Terrain Parks
Average lift line wait: 0 minutes

Looking for more information about Big Sky, Montana? Call the Big Sky Sotheby’s International Realty office today at 866.995.2211.