Powder days, quiet slopes, and of course, more Après. What better time to discover North America’s hidden ski gems? These resorts offer everything the big guys do (and more) without the crowds, so you can focus on your freestyle the way nature intended.
Fernie Alpine, British Columbia
Don’t let the cutesy name fool you. Nestled in the Canadian Rockies, Fernie Alpine offers unbeatable terrain for beginners and experts. Its 2,500 skiable acres include five alpine bowls and 3,500 feet of vertical drop.
This resort is famous for having the highest annual snowfall in the Rockies: snow here can reach up to 37 feet during ski season! Seasoned skiers and boarders will love the challenging terrain, but Fernie Alpine’s large beginners area and highly regarded ski school programs make it an ideal choice for families, too.
Whitefish Mountain, Montana
With its stunning views of Glacier National Park, down-to-earth Whitefish is perfect for those who want the mountain all to themselves. There are rarely busy lift lines here, so you’ll feel totally at peace as you enjoy the resort’s 3,000+ acres of skiing area. Whitefish has 14 operating lifts and offers night skiing under colorful lights. Oh, and we highly recommend the nachos at Hellroaring Bar & Saloon!
Mammoth Mountain, California
Mammoth is the highest resort in California, so not only does it get plenty of snow, but its ski season can stretch from November to June.
This prehistoric lava dome is an ideal place to bone up on skiing or snowboarding. Mammoth’s seven unique parks are each tailored to a specific skill level, ranging from beginners to experts, so you’ll be sure to find terrain that matches your abilities and challenges you. Top-notch instructors are on hand to instruct you, whether you’re a beginner or preparing to go off-piste.
Snow King Mountain, Wyoming
Snow King is a year-round activity hub located smack in the middle of Jackson. This resort is known for its budget-friendly prices and staff who go out of their way to make every visitor feel like royalty. Anyone looking to work multiple winter activities into their trip will be spoiled for choice here. For a real thrill, try the mountain roller coaster, night skiing, tubing, or alpine slide.
Lutsen Mountains, Minnesota
With a 1000-foot drop across four mountains, you’ll find a variety of terrain here–and a distinct lack of crowds, even on weekends. But what makes Lutsen Mountains truly special is its ambiance. Take in glorious views of Lake Superior from the gondola, which has the longest run of any in the Midwest, or the sprawling balcony of the Summit Chalet.