Skiing in America

Skiing in America

Saturday, December 22nd, 2012

While many Europeans won’t venture to the USA for their winter skiing, due to the wealth of options so close to home, there are some fantastic options dotted around the west and east coasts of America. So if you are already in the USA or planning a trip there, then maybe you should consider a skiing or snowboarding trip to one of the listed destinations.

I have frequently travelled throughout the USA and I would strongly recommend taking a pre-paid currency card with you. Most places throughout the USA will accept MasterCard and many of the USA’s ATM’s charge fees which makes using your domestic card even more of a financial crux. Looking at something like ICE Travel Currency always helps.

Utah

Park city is Utah’s famous ski resort and lies around 32 miles south east of Salt Lake City, the capital of Utah. It is a famous ski resort and was included in Forbes’s list of ‘Awesome’ ski resorts. Utah regularly gets good snow fall and has an array of runs which populate an area known as the Wasatch Mountain, which is host to a number of ski resorts. Notable mentions include The Canyon, which is renowned for its versatility and accessibility via its numerous lifts. Alta and Snowbird resorts must also not be discounted. Snowbird and Atla are right next to each other on the mountain, which means you can purchase a ski pass for both resorts which will deliver avid skiers and snowboarders a skiable area of 4,700 acres and 26 ski lifts. There are also proposed talks of a gondola being implemented to connect all the ski areas in Park City, but this is only a pipedream at present.

New York

The east coast is often overlooked for its skiing and snowboarding and for people outside this area of the USA; it is likely they will think Utah, Colorado and Wyoming first. All the way up even into Hampshire there is some fantastic skiing to be done on the east coast. While the temperamental climate had led to inconsistent snowfall the past couple of years, hopefully 2013 will see some natural snow bless the mountains, although many of these resorts also cover the slopes in man-made snow to ensure conditions are satisfactory.

While all of the ski resorts are at least 2-3 hours away from Manhattan, they still offer a fantastic opportunity for a weekend ski getaway. Hunter Mountain consists of three different mountains, and around a third of its terrain is tailored to beginners, but there are a number of expert runs and its new ski lift can move 3,000 people per hour. Windham Mountain includes 39 different trails and possesses multiple lifts, which in total can cater for over 16,000 passengers. You can also travel down the mountain in a giant Hamster ball, well ‘Snow Ball’, with a friend in the adventure park.

Vermont

Vermont and New York are so close to each other on the map; it is quite hard to distinguish them as different areas of skiing in terms of terrain. Whiteface Mountain is a famous resort and was home to the Winter Olympics in 1980. It has the largest vertical drop on the East Coast at a staggering 3,430 feet and it is popular among intermediate and expert skiers, with only 20% of its runs attributed to beginners. Gore Mountain is more favourable to beginners with 60% of its runs geared towards beginners and intermediates; it also has a snowmaking machine, to ensure the ski season isn’t interrupted by unpredictable weather.

Colorado

Colorado aka ‘The Rocky Mountains’ is internationally recognized for its skiing and breath-taking landscapes. While the highest peak of the Alps is actually taller than that of The Rockies, on average The Rockies are considered slightly higher with 753 peaks which are 13,000ft above sea level. The end point being that both areas are fantastic for skiing. Silverton is a ski resort which will challenge even the best skiers and its ‘easiest run’ has a 35 degree slope. This resort is the highest in North America and skiers must be equipped with avalanche gear, so it is certainly not one for the faint hearted.

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Skiing in Coloradomarada / Foter / CC BY-ND

Aspen has four ski areas, 320 runs and a glamorous reputation to boot. It is popular amongst avid skiers and celebrities, and has a reputation for an entertaining nightlife scene. Purgatory is famous for its classes and children and teen activities which make it a popular choice for families. It still has a wealth of difficult runs and two terrain parks to challenge even the most experienced skiers and snowboarders.

While it didn’t make it on to my list it is worth mentioning that Jackson Hole in Wyoming was rated as the #1 ski resort on Forbes’s “Top 10 Ski Resorts in the United States for 2013.” This accolade was based apparently on awesomeness and as the article later explains, its guarantees for a good winter, non-existent lines and the most famous ski run in the world – Corbet’s Couloir, make it so awesome.

Adam Porteous- writing on behalf of ICE plc. Click Here for more information on prepaid currency cards.