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11 Best Ski Resorts In The United States

by Editor

Deciding on a ski resort in the United States from the huge range of about 500 options can be tricky. As someone who loves skiing and traveling, I’ve visited more than 20 resorts across the country. 

When I’m not on the slopes in winter, I’m typically researching where to go next. So, I know all about which ski and snowboarding resorts are top tier. Continue diving in below as I highlight the best ski resorts in the United States.

The Best Ski Resorts In The US

Choosing from the many resorts can be tough. But, having skied at numerous top ski spots in the United States, I can recommend which ones are must-visit. Keep reading to find out about the ultimate top-tier ski resorts you shouldn’t miss.

  1. Aspen Highlands

Aspen is famous as the ultimate ski destination. It boasts four different ski resorts, offering diverse terrains suitable for both beginners and experts. Among these, Aspen Highlands shines as the go-to spot for expert skiers and snowboarders. With nearly 70% of its terrain designed for expert runs, it’s a paradise for those seeking a challenge. The highlight? The legendary Highlands Bowl, perfect for exploring after a fresh snowfall.

What makes Aspen stand out from other ski resorts and mountain towns is its luxurious amenities. Whether you’re after top-notch hotels, upscale stores, or a charming downtown with great dining options, Aspen has it all.

  1. Telluride

Telluride stands out as a wonderful resort, though it’s not exactly a secret spot. While it attracts celebrities for its renowned slopes, it maintains a hidden gem feel due to its slightly remote location and less crowded atmosphere compared to Vail or Breckenridge. I’m particularly fond of Telluride for its exceptional ski terrain offering some of the state’s most stunning mountain panoramas.

Apart from the breathtaking views, Telluride is perfect for group trips due to its diverse terrain mix. Beginners can enjoy 23% of the slopes, intermediates have 36%, and advanced to expert skiers have 41%, making it ideal for families with varying skill levels.

In addition to the ski slopes and stunning views, I adore Telluride for its cozy downtown area that feels like stepping back in time to an Old Western town. It’s charming, fun, and strikes a great balance between luxury and a relaxed vibe.

  1. Jackson Hole

Jackson Hole is known as one of the toughest ski resorts in the United States, making it a paradise for experienced skiers and snowboarders. About half of its terrain caters to experts, and it boasts a vast backcountry area spanning over 3000 acres, perfect for advanced skiers and snowboarders. The resort’s famous Corbet’s Couloir, an expert chute, is a highlight. Many people flock to the ski resort just for that run and it’s so epic that Jackson Hole Resort hosts an exciting Kings & Queens of Corbet’s event where skiers and snowboarders compete for the best run down this challenging slope. It’s an unparalleled experience.

Apart from its challenging slopes, Jackson Hole is famous for its charming downtown area. It features local shops, art galleries, delicious restaurants, fun western-style bars, and stunning mountain views. I love Jackson Hole for its blend of western charm, relaxed vibe, and endless outdoor adventures, making it an ideal destination for a getaway.

  1. Park City

Park City is the largest ski resort in the United States, offering a massive 7,300 acres of terrain for skiing and snowboarding. While Park City is a great destination all winter, February stands out as an ideal time with plenty of snow and nearly all runs open. With its vast size, you can explore new trails every time without getting bored. The resort caters well to intermediates (42% of terrain) and advanced riders (50% black diamonds).

What I love about Park City is not just its size but also its two main village areas: Park City Mountain Village and Canyons Village. Both offer great places to stay and endless options for shopping and dining. If you’re after a destination with limitless possibilities, Park City is a must-visit.

  1. Big Sky

Big Sky ranks among the largest ski resorts in the United States, boasting an impressive 5,850 acres of skiable terrain and 320 named ski runs. If you crave variety and never want to repeat a run during your ski trip, this is the perfect destination! 

Besides its massive size, Big Sky offers breathtaking mountain vistas and is conveniently situated between Bozeman and Yellowstone National Park, making it an ideal base for exploring the surrounding areas.

  1. Palisades Tahoe

Palisades Tahoe, formerly known as Squaw Valley, is a top-notch ski resort that definitely deserves recognition among the best in the United States. With a prestigious history, having hosted the 1960 Olympic Games, you can expect top-quality slopes. While at the resort, be sure to capture a photo with the Olympic rings and explore the Olympic Museum at High Camp.

I love Palisades Tahoe for its rich history, legendary terrain, stunning views of Lake Tahoe, and fantastic apres-ski scene. After a thrilling day on the slopes, don’t miss out on The Chalet or the Alpine Bar for some well-deserved apres-ski drinks.

  1. Mount Bachelor

Mount Bachelor is one of Oregon’s top ski resorts, and it’s a fantastic destination all winter and even into the spring. It’s also one of North America’s largest ski areas, offering an impressive 4,300 acres of terrain to explore. However, what truly makes Mount Bachelor special is its exceptional spring skiing experience.

I visited Mount Bachelor in April and was impressed by its late-season skiing. It’s perfect for extending your ski season, and its proximity to Bend adds to its appeal. Bend is famous for its numerous breweries, great restaurants, and overall outdoor vibe, making it the perfect place to unwind after a day on the slopes.

  1. Steamboat Springs

Steamboat Springs is a hidden gem in Colorado, free from the crowds of major resorts like Vail and Breckenridge. While it may not have the lavish reputation of Aspen or Telluride, this ski destination certainly holds its own. I’ve visited Steamboat Springs multiple times, and each visit leaves me with unforgettable experiences on the slopes, in the village, and downtown.

The resort is renowned for its legendary champagne powder, creating an incredible floating sensation after a fresh snowfall, it’s truly an unbelievable skiing experience. With 3,741 skiable acres and 182 ski trails, there’s plenty of terrain to explore, ensuring you never get bored. 

One of the highlights for me is the charming downtown area, offering a retreat with its array of shops, bars, and restaurants. A personal favorite of mine is Salt & Lime, where you can’t miss their delicious tacos, drinks, and inviting atmosphere.

  1. Taos Ski Valley

It might come as a surprise to see a New Mexico ski resort on this list, and I’ll admit, I was initially skeptical too. However, Taos Ski Valley is undeniably the best skiing spot in New Mexico and rightfully earned its place among the top ski resorts in the United States. While the resort is smaller in size, with just 1,294 skiable acres, what sets Taos apart is its unique blend of an average of 300 inches of snowfall annually combined with over 300 days of sunshine. This creates the perfect conditions for skiing on clear, sunny days while still enjoying plenty of fresh powder.

In addition to its exceptional snow and weather, Taos is ideal for groups with varying skill levels. It offers 24% of its terrain for beginners, 25% for intermediates, and 51% for experts.

Apart from the ski resort itself, Taos is known for its vibrant apres-ski scene. I highly recommend visiting The Bavarian or the Martini Tree Bar. They both offer fantastic experiences that you won’t want to miss.

  1. Sun Valley

Sun Valley, located in central Idaho, is renowned for offering the best skiing in the state. With 2,054 skiable acres and a total of 121 runs, it provides ample terrain for skiers and snowboarders to explore. What sets Sun Valley apart is its two mountains within the resort: Bald Mountain and Dollar Mountain, both of which offer exceptional skiing experiences.

Adding to its appeal is the vibrant Sun Valley Village, brimming with shops, restaurants, and bars. It’s the perfect spot for a stroll after a day on the slopes and an ideal place to stay for its convenient location near the ski areas.

  1. Killington Mountain

You might be surprised to see an East Coast resort featured here, and I would’ve shared that surprise in the past too. I’d heard about Killington for quite some time, so I decided to experience it firsthand. Now, I can definitely say that I understand the buzz surrounding Killington. Situated near central Vermont, Killington Mountain offers 1,509 skiable acres of terrain. While it may not boast the largest area compared to others on this list, what sets Killington apart is its impressive snowfall. It receives an average of 250 inches of natural snowfall each winter, a remarkable feat for an East Coast resort.

While some might argue that these numbers don’t match up to West Coast resorts, Killington is still a must-visit thanks to its terrain, snowfall, convenient lodging and dining options. I highly recommend heading to the Peak Lodge for its stunning views and outstanding cuisine.

If you’re on the East Coast, Killington is a fantastic choice without needing to go out West. And if you’re used to the West and want something different, give Killington a try, it’s worth it, believe me.

Final Thoughts On The Best Ski Resorts In The United States

The United States boasts hundreds of ski resorts, each with its own special features. Whether you enjoy the massive size of Park City, the challenges of Jackson Hole, the hidden gem charm of Taos Ski Valley, or the East Coast appeal of Killington, there’s something for everyone at each of these top notch ski resorts. From breathtaking views to lively apres-ski scenes, these resorts offer unforgettable experiences for skiers and snowboarders across America.

Author Bio:

Abby has a strong passion for skiing and exploring different parts of the world. Whether she’s uncovering local mountains or tackling well-known slopes, her aim is to motivate others to spend more time outdoors, discover breathtaking mountains, and push their boundaries through winter sports. She expresses her love for winter sports and exploring various winter destinations through her blog, Summit Skier.

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