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Get Ready For Ski Season

Thanksgiving is traditionally the opening weekend for ski season. All across the Western States, world class ski resorts are busy grooming their trails and preparing to safely welcome back visitors. In addition to Alpine (downhill skiing), many resorts have special trails for snowboarding, cross-country, and back country ski adventures. Historic ski towns like Vail, Taos, Telluride, and Park City offer luxurious accommodations, along with charming shopping and dining experiences. If you want to ski local closer to THEA, visit Ski California, a non-profit trade association representing 32 ski resorts in California and Nevada. The website covers everything from runs to live weather conditions. Check websites for health guidelines and policy updates.

Colorado Ski Country

If you’re planning a Colorado ski trip, a great resource is Colorado Ski Country, a not-for-profit trade association which represents 22 ski and snowboard resorts in Colorado including Aspen Mountain, Snowmass, Steamboat, Powderhorn, Telluride, Winter Park and more. Check ski area websites, social media and other communications prior to your visit to understand any health policies and procedures in place, current ticketing availability, and what is expected of you during your visit. More info HERE

Vail, Colorado

Located 100 miles west of Denver in the heart of the Colorado Rockies, Vail is one of the largest ski resorts in North America, with 5.317 skiable acres, 195 trails, and 31 lifts. The base elevation is 8,120 feet, rising to 11.570 feet peak elevation. With twinkling lights and crisp mountain air, Vail’s beautiful mountain village is the backdrop for many celebratory events which spark the holiday spirit for visitors and locals alike. Explore shops and restaurants along the heated pedestrian streets that follow the winding Gore Creek to the Covered Bridge, which is just steps away from Gondola One, which takes skiers to Vail Mountain’s finest slopes.

Park City, Utah

A 35-minute ride from Salt Lake City International Airport, Park City sits nestled at 7,000 feet above sea level in the Wasatch Mountains of Utah. Originally a silver mining town, Park City’s transformation to one of the world’s premier skiing destinations was marked by the first ski lift installation in 1946. Since then the “Greatest Snow on Earth” has been falling on Deer Valley Resort and Park City Mountain Resorts. Restaurants, bars, hotels, and recreational areas are currently open and following safe business practices to protect the health and welfare of residents, guests, and workforce. For details please visit the travel update page HERE

Sun Valley, Idaho

Since 1936, America’s first destination ski resort has captivated the imaginations of ski bums, big city refugees, and lifelong residents who love the uncrowded slopes, leg burning fall line pitches, and stellar guest service. Today, Sun Valley’s 2,000 acres of skiing across Bald and Dollar Mountains complement a bevy of year round on and off-mountain adventures. With an unrivaled arts and culture scene for a town its size, Sun Valley also has some of the best and most surprising dining and shopping of any mountain town. Business, restaurants, and hotels are open with adapted protocols for operating in the safest manner. More information HERE

Taos Ski Valley

Nestled in an intimate valley, Taos Ski Valley is New Mexico’s largest resort. Renowned for Kachina Peak, which reaches 12,481 ft above sea level, skiers and boarders will discover some of the finest terrain in North America. Bone dry powder shots, steep chutes, big bumps, cornices, and glades – it’s all here to get your adrenaline pumping. For those looking for a little more relaxed adventure, you’ll also find miles of well-manicured slopes and gradual groomers to carve up all season long. If you want to do some more exploring in the Land of Enchantment, Ski New Mexico is a great guide to New Mexico’s eight ski resorts and destinations such as Santa Fe, Village of Taos, Los Alamos, and Red River.

Big Sky, Montana

With 5,850 skiable acres, 38 lifts, 4,350 vertical feet on one lone peak, Big Sky Resort offers exceptional lodgings, fine dining and meeting facilities. Located midway between Bozeman and West Yellowstone, Montana, Big Sky Resort shares the same splendor as Yellowstone National Park and the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. Big Sky Resort has implemented many environmental practices and continues to find new ways to operate and develop a sustainable and environmentally friendly mountain resort.

Lake Tahoe

Many ski resorts around Lake Tahoe have opened in time for Thanksgiving weekend. Ski Lake Tahoe is a great resource for planning your Tahoe trip, with detailed information for six major resorts, including Sierra at Tahoe, Heavenly, Kirkwood, Squaw Valley / Alpine Meadows, Northstar, and Mt. Rose. You can check snow & weather conditions, trail maps, tickets & passes, lessons, rentals, and lodging & dining options. Health policies vary at individual ski resorts, so be sure to visit their websites for guidelines before visiting.

Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, Wyoming

One of North America’s most exclusive ski resorts, Jackson Hole Mountain Resort is located at Teton Village, Wyoming, 12 miles northwest of Jackson and due south of Grand Teton National Park. It is named after the historically significant Jackson Hole valley and is known for its steep terrain and a large continuous vertical drop of 4,139 ft. This season, the resort is adopting the best practices and direction from the National Ski Areas Association, the CDC, Wyoming Department of Health, Teton County Health Department and St. John’s Health. More info HERE

Mammoth Mountain

Mammoth Mountain is now open for the 20/21 winter season. Boasting the highest lift-served summit in California at 11,053 feet, Mammoth is the leading four-season mountain resort in the state offering year-round lodging and endless outdoor recreation. Winters are long and legendary – known for some of the best skiing and snowboarding in the United States. You can also explore the scenic Lakes Basin on Nordic skis or snowshoes, ride a gondola to Mammoth’s summit, or try some tubing at Woolly’s Tube Park. Make sure you review the new policies and procedures prior to your trip HERE

Mountain High

Mountain High is Southern California’s closest winter resort, located in the San Gabriel mountains just an hour and a half from Los Angeles. Situated along State Route 2 west of Wrightwood, Mountain High is one of the region’s most visited resorts, with an elevation of 6,600 feet to 8,200 feet for the Mountain High East Resort, 7,000 feet to 8,000 feet for the West Resort, and 7,200 feet to 7,800 ft for the North Resort. Read safety guidelines HERE

Photo credits:

Photo #1: Colorado Ski Country

Photo #2: Colorado Ski Country

Photo #3: Discover Vail

Photo #4: Deer Valley Resort

Photo #5: Visit Sun Valley/Sun Valley Resort

Photo #6: Ski New Mexico

Photo #7: Big Sky Resort

Photo #8: Heavenly Mountain

Photo #9: Jackson Hole Mountain Resort

Photo #10: Mammoth Mountain

Photo #11: Mountain High