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Reservations at the Bridger Bowl filled up by early morning on the last Saturday of the ski area’s 2020-2021 winter season.

People who secured a spot to ski or snowboard this weekend could be seen clambering to the lifts or chatting on a patio outside of the Jim Bridger Lodge. Many were clad in flowery shirts and jean shorts.

Bridger Bowl’s winter season officially ends Sunday, and uphill travel can start on Monday.

For skier Ethan Selig, Saturday marked the end of an unusual winter at the mountain. He’s had a season pass at Bridger Bowl for nine years, but he missed out on around 30 days of skiing this winter because of an injury.

Last Days at Bridger Bowl

People walk through the dusty parking lot on the second-to-last day of the 2020-2021 season on April 3, 2021, at Bridger Bowl.

Selig still plans on buying a season pass next winter. He likes Bridger’s upper mountain terrain, which includes access to its ridgeline and sidecountry.

Despite some difficulty using Bridger Bowl’s new online reservation system, Selig said the ski area did as good a job as they could operating the ski area this year.

Selig said he hopes he won’t have to make reservations to ski in the future, but he’s happy the system allowed staff to keep the ski area open amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Erin O’Connor, a spokesperson for Bridger Bowl, said the ski area’s greatest challenge this year was enforcing mask-wearing and social distancing.

Last Days at Bridger Bowl

A snowboarder looks out over people eating on the patio of the Jim Bridger Lodge from the Virginia City chairlift on the second-to-last day of the 2020-2021 season at Bridger Bowl, April 3, 2021.

A lack of snow in December also made opening the ski area difficult. Bridger had to delay its start date until mid-December — two weeks after the projected opening.

Using the online reservation system was challenging for staff and guests, but it kept people safe, O’Connor said. Feedback on the online system started negative, but the majority of people figured out how to use it by the end of the season, she said.

Bridger Bowl doesn’t plan to use the reservation system next winter unless it’s necessary, but some people have said they’d like to use it again, according to O’Connor.

Last Days at Bridger Bowl

Connor Harrison, a first year lift operator at Bridger Bowl, scans a skier's pass on the second-to-last day of the 2020-2021 season at the ski area, April 3, 2021.

“We’re hoping we don’t need to have it,” she said.

O’Connor said she appreciates Bridger Bowl’s employees, as they made sure the mountain operated this year. Other ski areas around the country and world closed in response to COVID-19.

“It might not have been a perfect season, but I’m really thankful for all we were able to do,” O’Connor said.

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Helena Dore can be reached at or at 582-2628.

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