Here we go again! The second strong, early-winter storm has moved across the Rocky Mountain range in the western United States and Canada.
For those that want flexibility, ski only a handful of days, or their local mountain is on the Epic or Ikon Pass, we get it. To start things off right, we’ll be completely honest with you. We have an Epic Local Pass. Heavenly is only a few minutes from our house, so we use it to get in a few laps when we don’t have a ton of time. Do we go to resorts on the Epic or Ikon Pass for vacation? Rarely.
Luckily for mountain town lovers, activities and events aren’t just for the winter. Whether you’re looking to go full-in on biking, music, beer or food (or perhaps them all), mountain resorts across the country are your destination for summer fun. Keep that adventure bucket full with this list from SnoCountry on not-to-miss summer events.
With 200 inches of snow already this season, Wyoming’s Grand Targhee Resort is a powder paradise and a hidden gem among all the major Western resorts.
Wyoming, home to the Grand Teton Mountains and America's smallest population. Both these attributes bode well for skiers and snowboarders flocking to the state because after all who doesn’t love short lift lines, untouched powder and down-home service?
Glad to have you back, SnoCast readers! We can't wait to give you an early edge on when to catch the best snow of the season as we bring you forecasts each week through the season.
Just before the 2008 recession, Grand Targhee unveiled plans for major changes to the western Wyoming resort, but they didn’t get much farther than that. Now, 10 years later, they are back.
Loadin' up for a trip into the backcountry (Cascade Powder Hounds/Facebook)
In greater and greater numbers, skiers and snowboarders have taken to snowcat rides into powder country all across the U.S.
It's a festive Christmas at Grand Targhee. (Grand Targhee)
If celebrating a white Christmas is on your wish list this year, planning to spend the day with loved ones on the slopes is just what Santa ordered. Finish the day with a festive meal where everyone can relax and enjoy each other’s company and you’ve got a family tradition in the making. Follow up an uncrowded day skiing and riding with a feast at one of these mountain resorts.
Snowshoe in West Virginia is in a prime location for wintry weather this week. (Snowshoe)
The weather pattern change we have been waiting for in the East is finally here bringing cold temperatures and snow, while the West continues to be sunny and dry.
Loveland chairlift ready to be first open. (Loveland/Facebook)
It’s the time of year when the first snow hits the high ridges, the ski shows debut – and resorts begin to announce the day that the new ski and snowboard season will arrive.
Celebrations at Breck. (Breckenridge/Facebook)
As if to say auf wiedersehene to summer and willkommen to winter, Oktoberfest in the Western mountains is celebrated just as the seasons pivot away from fun-in-the-sun and toward the upcoming ski and snowboard season.
Mountaintop views of the total solar eclipse. (NASA)
On Aug. 21, the first solar eclipse to cross North America in 38 years will hit the Oregon coast about 9 a.m. PDT, then course over the mountains of Idaho and Wyoming before hitting the Midwest and finishing up across the North Carolina high country.
It's party time on the shores of Lake Tahoe at Heavenly Valley on New Year's Eve. (TahoeSouth/Facebook)
The annual celebration of the new year at a ski and snowboard resort signals that the season is in full swing – and looking forward to tons of snow in the coming months.
Mountain resorts traditionally feature torchlight parades, fireworks, festive food and hearty drink on the evening of Dec. 31. Many add twists to the holiday activities – for kids, VIPs and just regular folk.
Here’s a preview of some of what will be happening in the across the country as 2016 turns into 2017 up in the hills:
South Lake Tahoe shuts down Main Street for Heavenly Valley visitors to party with music, food and drink before famed Gondola Ball Drop (ala Times Square) to signal in new year.
Crystal Mountain lays out buffet and prix fixe dinners, separate parties for teens and adults, and torchlight ski and ride down the Cheers trail for 16 years or older.
Grand Targhee gets going early with glowstick parade for 5-14 year olds with basic turning and stopping skills. Adults parade at 5:45 p.m. with roadside flares (wear an old parka), and then fireworks.
Breckenridge starts out with a glowworm parade on the slopes for the kids, then an adult version later. Many hike up Boreas Pass for best view of nighttime fireworks.
Sunday River features evening ride up Chondola for fancy meal at mid-mountain Peak Lodge. Back at base, the music is nonstop until midnight.
Stowe goes all day on Dec. 31 with face-painting, handbell concert, champagne tasting and free s’more before torchlight parade and fireworks cap off the year.
Sugarbush honors a human’s best friend with annual Dog Parade in the afternoon at base of Lincoln Peak, followed by the usual evening festivities.
Just off the Blue Ridge Parkway, Wintergreen trails offer stunning vistas. (Wintergreen)
We all know the mountains are the place for stunning beauty in the summer. The best way to discover this beauty is to get out and hike the miles of trails to be found at your favorite resort. Grab your pack and explore one of SnoCountry’s favorite hiking trails.
Bring your lawn chairs and blankets as Sundance invites talented local bands and artists to mingle their music with the mountain air. (Sundance/Facebook)
This summer, the hills are alive with the sound of music – pop, rock, jazz and much more – as resorts all over the country crank up the volume.
Summer 2016 brings new trails and a third lift to the Ramshead mountain area at Killington, scheduled to open by late July. (Chandler Burgess/Killington Resort)
At nearly 100 ski and snowboard resorts across America, the ski lifts provide access for a burgeoning number of mountain bikers who seek the same thrills as downhill skiers and riders: turbo-charged straightaways, high-speed turns and plenty of air.
The Pacific Ocean warming phenomenon known as El Niño came roaring into the West this winter with great promise of above-average snowfall for all. For some resorts, that was true -- but not for all.