The 6 Best Ski Mountains in the U.S. to Visit This Winter
The U.S.A. is home to some of the best ski mountains in the world. Some of the most notable are located in the Rocky Mountains, which span from Canada all the way down to New Mexico! With so many good ski resorts in the US, deciding where to go on your next winter getaway can be a tough decision. Each ski mountain attracts a different kind of crowd and provides a different experience, so it all depends what kind of winter vacay you’re looking for. Lucky for you, I’m going to break it all down! Whether you are an aprés-ski aficionado, a downhill daredevil, or somewhere in-between, this is your guide to choosing the best ski experience for you!
Table of Contents
THE BEST SKI RESORTS IN THE US FOR EVERY TYPE OF TRIP
The Best Ski Mountain for Advanced Skiers & Powder Hounds
Jackson Hole, Wyoming
A true skier’s mountain, this area attracts the most advanced of skiers. This may not be the place where you want to learn how to ski, but if you’re looking for black diamond routes, epic natural beauty, wildlife, and a boujee mountain village scene, this is the spot for you!
Jackson Hole is said to have the most billionaires per capita, so expect top-of-the-line boutique shops, upscale dining options, and of course, the very best luxury accommodations! With hotels like the Amangani and The Four Seasons Jackson Hole, get ready to be pampered!
Aprés Drink of Choice: Bourbon on the Rocks
Best Hotels in Jackson Hole: The Four Seasons Jackson Hole or Amangani
The Best Ski Mountain for Luxury & “See and Be Seen” Aprés Activities
Aspen is known for its glamorous aprés-ski scene, where the rich and famous gather in their furs around cozy fireplaces and pricey cocktails. But there is a reason Aspen draws this kind of crowd – the best of the best luxury accommodations and access to four pristinely groomed ski mountains: Aspen Mountain, Buttermilk, Highlands, and Snowmass. Thankfully, one ski pass gets you into all four mountains. Expert skiers: head to the Highlands back bowls!
Aspen’s downtown area boasts endless aprés options and even the infamous mid-mountain party spot called Cloud Nine, where your chances of a champagne shower increase significantly. Check out my Ultimate Guide to Aspen here!
Apres Drink of Choice: Veuve Clicquot
Best Hotels: Hotel Jerome or The Little Nell Lodge
The Best Ski Mountain for European Village Vibes
With the largest ski area in all of the U.S., it’s hard to compete with Vail when it comes to long runs for all different levels (experts will absolutely LOVE the legendary back bowls!). Plus, the best part about Vail is the adorable European-inspired ski village at the base of the mountain with endless aprés options!!
Vail Village has an incredible array of high-end restaurants, whiskey bars, designer boutiques, and luxury accommodations. It’s an all-around winner for a group trip with friends, a romantic getaway, or a family affair. Vail is very similar to Aspen but slightly easier to get to. You can drive from Denver (2.5 hours depending on traffic), or fly right into the Eagle County Regional Airport!!
Aprés Drink of Choice: Aperol Spritz
Best Hotels: The Four Seasons Resort and Residences or The Arrabelle at Vail Village
Best Airbnb for a Group: Four-Bedroom in Vail Village
The Best Ski Mountain For Terrain Parks & Nightlife
Park City, Utah
An easy 30 minutes from the Salt Lake City airport, Park City is a charming mountain town known for hosting the annual Sundance Film Festival. The Park City ski resort is also connected to Canyons, allowing guests access to over 7,300 acres of powder! With backcountry for experts and green groomers for beginners, Park City has the best of both worlds. They even have tubing for the little ones!
Park City is also one of the only resorts with mid-mountain homes for the ultimate ski-in ski-out experience! The historic downtown area where the Sundance Film Festival is held each year has a fantastic aprés and nightlife scene as well as great restaurants.
Aprés Drink of Choice: Local IPA
Best Hotels: Stein Erickson Lodge or The Waldorf Astoria Park City
Best Airbnb for a Group: Ski-in Ski-Out Three-Bedroom
The Best Ski Mountain for Epic Views
Heavenly, Lake Tahoe
Sitting on the Nevada/California line of Lake Tahoe, surrounded by lively casinos, Heavenly Ski Resort has hands down the best views of any resort in the U.S.! The slopes overlook the pristine blue waters of Lake Tahoe, and you can catch the sunset over the lake as you make your way down the mountain at the end of the day. Plus, this area is known for its many “bluebird days” (AKA sunshine-filled skiing! Count me in!).
There is a wide array of different trails for all levels of skiers, from beginner to expert. Advanced skiers and snowboarders will love peeling off into the massive redwood trees (it’s truly an epic experience!). At the base of the mountain where the gondola lands, there are several fun aprés ski bars to relax and enjoy a Hot Toddy.
Other than the casinos, there isn’t really a nightlife scene here. This spot is better for renting a cabin with friends and bringing the party yourselves!
Aprés Drink of Choice: Hot Toddy
Best Hotel: Edgewood Tahoe Resort
The Best Ski Mountain for Families & Beginners
Big Sky, Montana
Big Sky receives an average of 400 inches of snowfall per year, so you’re almost guaranteed fresh powder. While there is a wide array of acreage for all levels here, Big Sky is known for having the most beginner and intermediate terrain. With big open trails, vast blue skies, incredible wildlife, and minimal crowds, it’s a nature lover’s playground! As for activities, dog sledding, tubing, snowshoeing, and snowmobiling are sure to keep everyone entertained!
Aprés Drink of Choice: Spiked Hot Cider
Best Hotel: Montage Big Sky
Best Airbnb for a Group: Ski-in Ski-out Five-Bedroom
Check out these other blog posts: