The 5 Best Ski and Snowboard Destinations in North America
Because California has been in a drought for the past several years, the Magpie team is extra excited about all the fantastic snow that we have this year! We are channeling all of this enthusiasm into a short guide to great skiing and snowboarding in the United States and Canada, so that you can experience as much fresh powder as possible this winter.
- Whistler, British Columbia The site of the 2010 Winter Olympics is located about an hour and a half away from the fun and fascinating city of Vancouver, Whistler offers spectacular views of the Canadian Coast Mountains as well as great powder. You can take a shuttle bus from Vancouver to the mountain, and there are loads of accommodations available. Each area of Whistler has slightly different types of accommodations, so you can find the best place for you. The best nightlife is definitely in Whistler Village where you can celebrate your awesome day in the snow! Consider taking an extra few days on your trip to explore Vancouver, too.
2. Snowbird, Utah Little Cottonwood Canyon is one of the best places in the world for great skiing and snowboarding! Snowbird is a fantastic mountain, and if you’re a skiier, you can buy a joint pass to Snowbird and Alta so that you have even more places to explore. Snowbird is six miles east of Salt Lake City, but it takes awhile to get there — about 40 minutes — as you wind up and in to the mountains. We recommend staying somewhere near the slopes, but if you choose to stay in Salt Lake City, you can explore all the great restaurants and take a shuttle to the mountain. Park City, the location of most of the 2002 Winter Olympic events, is also a great place to explore.
3. Wolf Creek, Colorado It’s really hard to choose just one place to go in Colorado. They’re all amazing, but since we are celebrating snow this winter, we chose Wolf Creek due to itssuperior availability of powder and uncrowded slopes. The only issue is that it’s pretty far away from everything and it takes awhile to actually get there. For the sake of easy transportation from Denver, your best options are Vail, Breckenridge, and Aspen. There is even a shuttle from the Denver airport to each of them! If you’re into nightlife, definitely check out Aspen and Vail — they have great restaurants, shopping, and a really fun bar scene.
4. Squaw Valley, California The Lake Tahoe area has a ton of ski resorts, and all of them have been blessed with excellent snow this year. If you’re only going to go there once, we recommend skiing at Squaw Valley, the site of the 1960 Winter Olympics (we have to admit, it’s pretty cool to drive past the Olympic flame when you get there!) It’s a great mountain and you won’t get bored there if you ski there multiple days. However, if you do have the urge to explore, you can go to nearby Alpine Meadows (Squaw Valley and Alpine are now owned by the same company and your lift ticket covers both places) or drive on scenic Highway 89 to Heavenly to get the absolute best views of Lake Tahoe!
5. Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, Wyoming Nothing beats the stunning beauty of the Teton Range and the wild feeling that you get out in Wyoming! The town of Jackson is a great place for after skiing, with attractions like the Million Dollar Cowboy Bar, or you can stay close to the slopes at the Jackson Hole Mountain Resort. It’s a challenging mountain with breathtaking views of Jackson Hole. If you feel like exploring further, you can drive to the other side of the Teton Range to Grand Targhee Ski Resort and experience the beautiful Targhee National Forest.
Of course, there are so many other wonderful places to ski and snowboard in North America that we didn’t cover…there’s loads more in the Rockies, Sierras, and Cascade ranges as well as the entire East Coast of the United States! So stay tuned for more coverage of all your options during this wonderful year of snow!