Great Bear

Great Bear is a ski area located in the state of South Dakota in USA. The resort is in the town of Sioux Falls, SD.

Season Passes

Great Bear is not a part of any nationwide lift ticket system. Passes such as Epic, IKON, or Mountain Collective allow pass holders to ski at multiple mountians with a single purchase. Unfortunately, none of those passes with with Great Bear. To purchase season passes, you'll need to visit Great Bear's website.

Lodging Options

There are numerous options to stay at Great Bear around the resort. Check out the available options with the form below.

Great Bear Terrain Overview

Great Bear has a total of 12 ski trails, which are serviced by 5 ski lifts, gondolas and/or trams. Great Bear is considered a smaller than average ski area, with only a maximum of 20 acres available to ski. This area is equivalent to 8 hectares, 0.0 square miles, or 0.1 square kilometers.

Great Bear's slopes see on average 48 inches (15 meters) of snowfall a year.

Total Runs
Ski Lift
Skiable Acres
20(0 km2)
Annual Snowfall
48"(1,463 cm)

Great Bear Elevation

Great Bear has a summit elevation of 1,541 feet, or 470 meters. However, not all of that elevation is able to be skied. The base of the ski slope sits at 1,345 feet above sea level, creating a ski hill that is 196 feet (60 meters) high. This is referred to as the slope's vertical drop - or a measure of how high the skiable hill is.

Great Bear has a very low summit elevation. The summit of this park is one of the smaller ones in the country.

Mountain Summit
Summit Elevation
1,541'(470 m)
Vertical Drop
Vertical Drop
196'(60 m)
Mountain base
Base Elevation
1,345'(410 m)

Great Bear Difficulty Level

Difficulty Score
9.7out of 100
←  EasyHard  →
Great Bear is an extremely beginner-friendly ski area. It is in fact one of the easiest ski slopes in all of North America, ranking in the bottom 10% of overall difficulty. This is due to it having 68% of its trails are rated as "beginner", and a vertical drop of only 196 feet.


At Parks & Trips, we've created a proprietary Difficulty Score that attempts to show how difficult a particular ski slope is. We get to this number by combining a number of metrics for each resort and comparing them to its peers. Most of the score is based off the amount of easy-intermediate-expert slopes by acreage and the maximum vertical drop of the overall resort, but also includes a few lesser-used metrics as well.

Our algorithm compares each resort’s metrics with all others in North America, then assigns each a Difficulty Score, which we use to rank them accordingly. Resorts with a lower score are easier to ski than those with a higher one. However, a high score does not mean that the resort does not have any easy slopes, or vice versa. This is just an overall score given to the resort based on all its metrics grouped together.

Skiable Terrain by Difficulty Level

Great Bear has 20 total skiable acres, which can be broken down into the three main groups of difficulty: Beginner, Intermediate, and Expert.

Since Great Bear is an extremely beginner-friendly ski area, it has 68% of its trails are rated as "beginner-level". 32% trails are rated as intermediate.
Green Circle
68%(14 acres)

Beginner trails (identified by a green circle) are the easiest trails on the hill with a gradual 25% or less gradient, and are usually wide to accommodate beginner skiers.

Blue Square
32%(6 acres)

Intermediate trails (identified by a blue square) are usually the most popular and crowded runs, which have a slope of anywhere between 25-40%.

Black Diamond
0%(0 acres)

Expert trails (identified by a black diamond... or two) are the hardest slopes on the mountain, and have very steep gradients over 40%.

Is Great Bear good for beginners?

Great Bear is a very beginner-friendly course. In fact, it is one of the easiest ski slopes in all of North America, ranking in the bottom 10% of overall difficulty. 68% of its trails are rated as "beginner".

Great Bear Location

Great Bear is located in the state of South Dakota, USA. This ski area is nearest the town of Sioux Falls, SD.

Sioux Falls, SD 57103 USA
View on Google Maps


GPS Coordinates:
43.57000, -96.67000

Getting to Great Bear

By Car: If you are driving, you would set your GPS to either the ski resort's name (Great Bear), its coordinates of 43.57000, -96.67000 (latitude, longitude), or simply drive towards the town of Sioux Falls, SD to get close.

By Air: If you are coming in from across the country, then you may need to board an airplane to get here.

A large airport has scheduled major airline service with millions of passengers per year. This type of airport always accepts international flights. Here are the closest large airport(s) to Great Bear.

Minneapolis–Saint Paul International AirportMSPMinneapolis, MN193 mi

A medium-sized airport has scheduled regional airline service. This type of airport may or may not accept international flights. Here are the closest medium-sized airport(s) to Great Bear.

Sioux Falls Regional Airport / Joe Foss FieldFSDSioux Falls, SD4 mi
Sioux Gateway Airport / Brigadier General Bud Day FieldSUXSioux City, IA82 mi
Huron Regional AirportHONHuron, SD96 mi

There may also be much smaller regional airports next to Great Bear, but we didn't list them here due to the fact that no major airlines go through them.

Other Nearby Ski Resorts

Skiers will - especially if coming from far away - try and visit a couple different slopes all in the same trip. Here are the closest other ski slopes within 100 miles of Great Bear.

NameLocationSummitDifficulty ScoreDistance

Great Bear Mountain Stats

Summit Elevation1,541 ft
Base Elevation1,345 ft
Vertical Drop196 ft
(68% Beginner,  32% Intermediate,  0% Expert)
Skiable Acres20
Avg. Annual Snowfall48 inches
Great Bear Mountain Stats