Silverstar Mountain Resort Vernon B.C — Photo courtesy of Silverstar Mountain Resort
If you’re in the process of planning a winter ski trip, why not look for something different–a ski resort with beautiful terrain and landscapes, no lift lines, versatile skiing and a quaint town atmosphere. These 10 ski resorts offer magnificent slope experiences for all levels and everything you will need for a memorable winter-white vacation.
Silverstar Mountain Resort Vernon, B.C — Photo courtesy of Silverstar Mountain Resort
Silverstar Mountain Resort | British Columbia
This colorful, mid-mountain, ski-in, ski-out Canadian village feels like a big mountain experience with a small-town vibe. Uncrowded and known for its amazing, light, dry snow, this resort is located above British Columbia’s Okanagan Valley, less than an hour’s drive from Kelowna International Airport.
Whichever pace or pitch skiers prefer, they can find them here. Known for terrain suitable for all levels, an excellent ski school and with 3,282 acres of skiable terrain and 130 runs spread across four mountain faces, Silverstar is also popular for families seeking a true Canadian winter experience. Enjoy breathtaking views and unlimited access to 55 kilometers of groomed, world-class Nordic trails, magical snowshoe trails, downhill tubes at Tube Town Adventure Park, fat biking and more. Kids will also enjoy night skiing, which is available December 18 to March 19, 2016.
Sundance Mountain Resort, Utah — Photo courtesy of Sundance Resort
Sundance Mountain Resort | Utah
Sundance is home to some of the most incredible views in Utah, but also one of the most unique ski experiences. Nestled beneath the picturesque Mount Timpanogos, one of the most iconic mountains in Utah, Robert Redford’s pride offers guests a truly unique and intimate mountain experience, from the rustic cottages tucked discretely into the mountainside to the exquisite mountain vista that offers skiing and riding for every ability. What keeps the ski lines short and the place pristine and peaceful is its 55-minute location from the airport. With 10 surrounding resorts less than an hour from the airport, Sundance is the farthest. Also, the experience at Sundance is for the relaxed traveler who really wants to shut-off from society for a minute.
You will find night skiing, Nordic center for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing, a nature-inspired eco-friendly spa and wellness program and world-class dining experiences. Don’t miss Tree Room or, for brunch, the Foundry Grill or the Owl Bar, which is home to the real Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid bar, imported to Sundance after being refurbished.
Big Sky Resort, Montana — Photo courtesy of Glenniss Indreland
Big Sky Resort | Montana
Guests come to Big Sky Resort for endless terrain under an expansive "big sky" and where they can leave crowds and traffic behind, lapping ski runs with barely any wait time. Big Sky Resort is large, with four mountains connected by chair lifts, providing families and friends of different skiing abilities a magnitude of intertwined terrain levels, notably the desired steeps the Lone Peak Tram accesses. Powder stashes are continually found throughout Big Sky due to the consistent snowfall in the Northern Rockies, with a natural fall line back to the village base. This is a resort without limits, as guests enjoy activities that go beyond skiing including ice climbing, dog sledding, showshoe tours, snow coach tours, sleigh rides and more. Conveniently located between Bozeman-Yellowstone International Airport, you won’t encounter slow traffic to the resort. Instead, begin your ski vacation with an easy drive through a scenic canyon skirting along the Gallatin River.
Killington Resort, Vermont — Photo courtesy of Killington Resort
Killington Resort | Vermont
Killington, one of the largest ski area in the Eastern United States, sits on 3,000 acres in the heart of Vermont’s Green Mountains. Known for its tremendous size and for an electric après ski atmosphere–but with more than 800 acres of gladed terrain and 212 trails spread across six peaks–you’re sure to own the trees and trails, even on the busiest days. Killington also boasts five base areas, some with multiple dining and drinking options (Sunrise, Bear Mountain, K-1, Ramshead, Snowshed), so there is never a shortage of dining options after a long ski day. Home to the longest season in the East, Killington’s snow guns come to life before Halloween and can run as late as May or June.
Sugar Bowl Resort, Lake Tahoe — Photo courtesy of Grant Barta
Sugar Bowl Resort | California
If you are looking for varied terrain across four mountain peeks, an average snow of 500 inches every season (the most snow in Tahoe) and the shortest lift lines and least crowded slopes, put Sugar Bowl Resort on your list. Enjoy snow kiting, snow biking and runs for beginners, families and experts (including an open run policy as one of the best backcountry resorts in the area). This resort features an open boundary policy with no restrictions, so you can ski any kind of backcountry terrain to find the deepest powder in the Sierra. California family-owned and operated since 1939, this resort gives families the ideal mountain resort experience with many recent updates and renovations. The closest major resort to the Bay Area, Sugar Bowl is just three hours from San Francisco and 45 minutes from Reno.
Crested Butte Mountain Resort, Colorado — Photo courtesy of Dave Kozlowski/CBMR
Crested Butte Mountain Resort | Colorado
Nestled in the heart of Colorado’s Rocky Mountains, Crested Butte is an uncrowded ski resort gem. Crested Butte Mountain Resort celebrates the area’s heritage as well with a widely diverse landscape, and skiers of all levels will find a new challenge with each visit. From amazing skiing and snowboarding with some of the best lift-served extreme terrain in the country, to the 57 percent intermediate mountain and some great beginner trails, there is something for all levels. The views will leave you breathless with almost two million acres of national forest surrounding the ski area, which leaves the landscape untouched.
Be sure to experience Teocalli 2 Bowl, known to the locals as Teo 2. It just opened last season and brought an additional 40 acres of extreme skiing terrain with pillow drops, steep tree lines and the finish with a mellow open bowl of fresh powder. Also, don’t miss the new Umbrella Bar at Ten Peaks which features glass walls, a 35-foot diameter retractable umbrella roof and a 2,400-square-foot deck area for outdoor seating to enjoy the sunshine and views with great food and drinks.
Sun Valley Resort, Idaho — Photo courtesy of Sun Valley Resort
Sun Valley Resort | Idaho
Known as the birthplace of destination skiing, Sun Valley has more than 3,400 vertical feet and more than 2,000 acres of varied terrain. Sun Valley offers skiers and boarders something special on not just one, but two mountains. Sun Valley Resort offers the beginner Dollar Mountain, and the more advanced Bald Mountain. Thirteen chairlifts and 65 varied runs await skiers and boarders on both sides of Baldy.
You won’t need a car in Sun Valley because it’s a short stroll to just about anything you could want to see, do or eat. This winter, Sun Valley Resort celebrates its 80th anniversary. Sun Valley drew celebrities and champion skiers from around the world, and everyone else who wanted a winter resort with year-round sun, and virtually no crowds. Enjoy tubing, sleigh rides, snowshoeing and some of the best cross-country skiing in America.
Wengen, Switzerland — Photo courtesy of Switzerland Tourism
Wengen | Switzerland
The car-free holiday resort offers a family-friendly ski around the Männlichen and the Kleine Scheidegg. With its nostalgic timber houses, the many dispersed holiday chalets and hotels dating from the belle époque period, this Bernese Oberland holiday resort has retained all the character of a picture-postcard mountain village. Wengen is a great starting point for the family-friendly ski region of Kleine Scheidegg-Männlichen, with 68 miles of predominantly easy to medium difficulty ski runs, and the renowned World Cup slope on the Lauberhorn. The neighboring ski areas of the Jungfrau region, Grindelwald-First and Mürren-Schilthorn are also readily accessible. The clean air, long hours of sunshine and the toboggan runs and around 50 km of winter hiking trails also attract non-skiers to the sunny resort.
Wengen has a long ski-history–1930 was the first race of the world-famous Lauberhorn ski race. During winter season, visitors can experience ski nostalgia in the village in the Bernese Oberland. They can exchange their modern skiing equipment for vintage skiing garments, boots and skis. A ski instructor helps them to make it down the slope just like their ancestors did 150 years ago.
Marmot Basin Jasper, Alberta Canada — Photo courtesy of Ski Marmot Basin
Marmot Basin Jasper | Alberta
Marmot Basin is located in Canada’s largest Rocky Mountain National Park and set in one of the most natural, unspoiled and beautiful landscapes in the world. Jasper is an authentic mountain community that has somehow managed to retain a cozy, warm and “real” atmosphere, while still providing all the amenities that skiers crave. Marmot Basin offers diverse terrain, towering mountains and spectacular scenery; dry Rocky Mountain snow; a long season (mid-November to early May) and, best of all, uncrowded slopes and virtually no lift lines. What makes the ski experience here different is Marmot Basin’s location right in the middle of one of North America’s largest protected natural areas. The vibe here is laid-back. You may even need to cross the street to yield to wildlife sharing the same sidewalk.
Telluride Ski Resort, Colorado — Photo courtesy of Visit Telluride
Telluride Ski Resort | Colorado
This old mining town’s charm is what keeps guests coming back, along with its jaw-dropping 13,000- and 14,000-foot peaks that surround the town. Telluride is located in a box canyon, so there is only one way in and out of town; it’s surrounded on three sides by mountains. Now it’s even easier to get there than ever before, with 14 direct flights throughout the winter from 11 major cities.
Telluride is loved for its authentic mountain character, unpretentious attitude and celebration of adventure. Guests have the option of either staying in the town of Telluride or in Mountain Village. Mountain Village is perched above the valley floor at 9,500 feet, providing access to the Telluride Ski Resort and Uncompahgre National Forest. The two towns are connected by a free, scenic gondola–the only transportation system of its kind in North America. The 13-minute ride is a daily event for residents and visitors alike. Exploring both Telluride and Mountain Village is easy with the convenience of the gondola.