Best Vermont Ski Resorts
Best Vermont Ski Resorts – Smugglers' Notch Resort
Three mountains – Madonna, Sterling, and Morse – comprise Smugglers' Notch, so named for its checkered history of harboring Vermont traders trying to bypass the Embargo Acts against the United Kingdom in the early 1800s. Now it's home to a friendly a ski resort with 78 trails and an affable, family-oriented mission. As such, the daycare and children and teens' ski-schools are, well, top-notch, with excellent instructors determined that your child leave a better skier than he or she went in, often in only a days' time. Their adult lessons aren't too shabby either.
Best Vermont Ski Resorts – Stowe Mountain
With 116 trails and $89/day lift tickets, Stowe Mountain is the biggest and priciest mountain on this list, on the scale of the mega-mountains like Killington and Sugarbush. It is also simply the best overall skiing you can find in Vermont. At nearly 4,400 feet, Stowe's Mount Mansfield is the highest peak in Vermont, and the 333 inches of annual snowfall guarantees that's there's plenty of fresh powder to mix in with the man-made stuff. The "Front Four" double-black diamond trails are among the most difficult (and fun) runs you'll hit as an advanced skier, though there's still plenty of beginner and intermediate trails (especially on the more sedate Spruce Peak) for slalomers of all levels.
Best Vermont Ski Resorts – Bolton Valley
Bolton Valley is another exceptional mountain for families, especially those with varying skill levels. The ski area is relatively small, but with 71 trails, there's still enough variety to satisfy the biggest novice the casual adept. The resort also has twelve trails for night-skiing, which always a fun an unique mountain experience. Best of all, Bolton is cheap: Lift tickets run $59 for adults on weekends, and $49 on weekdays, with special packages for those who want to include lodging. Shave ten dollars off those prices for students, children and seniors.
Best Vermont Ski Resorts – Burke Mountain
Travelers love Burke Mountain for its discreet charms: elegantly groomed trails, small lift lines, and affordable rates. Located in the sleepy town of East Burke, Vermont, the mountain, home to the first ski academy in the United States, is smaller than the rest of the areas on this list (45 trails on 250 acres) but elicits rave reviews from everyone who skis here. Roughly a quarter of Burke's runs are novice-level, while the other seventy-five percent making up challenging intermediate and expert trails. Lift ticket prices start at $64/day for adults with discounts for students, children, and seniors.
Photo by Lee Story via Flickr