The mountain is not just for skiers and boarders anymore. From fat biking to dog sledding, there are more outdoor activities than you could possibly imagine and those more interested in fine dining, bar hopping, spa treatments, live music and epic slope-side celebrations can certainly find their fit among the snowy peaks as well.
Major ski resorts have made a conscious effort to become more than just their slopes and the on-mountain improvements have been mirrored by off-mountain developments. If you haven’t checked these popular ski spots out recently, you should see why they’re great for people who don’t ski too.
The resort that touts itself as the last of the old west offers some pretty rugged adventures—and we’re not just talking about the incredible skiing and boarding that Jackson Hole is known for. Plow through untamed backcountry terrain on a snowmobile; discover Grand Teton National Park on two fat wheels or paraglide from the mountain over Teton Village. Guests looking to unwind will have no problem finding relaxation in the Four Seasons Spa or delicious farm-to-table dishes in one of the nearby world class restaurants.
Many come to Sun Valley seeking powder-packed slopes drenched in sunshine, but this mountain offers far more than just great skiing and snowboarding. Those who enjoy the outdoors without boots and poles can take advantage of lift-serviced snow tubing on Dollar Mountain, ice skating on a scenic outdoor rink or take a tour on a sleigh led by horses. The wintry outdoors isn’t for everyone, though, Sun Valley also has a fantastic spa to keep guests relaxed and a movie theatre that has been transformed from an old opera house.
80 miles west of Denver sits the snowy trails and bowls of Copper Mountain and though the skiing is among the best in Colorado, there are plenty of opportunities for adventure off the slopes as well. The major adrenaline rush for non-skiers comes in the form of a “barn.” More specifically, the Woodward Copper Barn—a 19,000-square-foot indoor adventure park that houses a skate and bike park complete with ramps, a bowl, a pump track, trampolines and some of the biggest foam pits around. Those looking for something a little less skate and bike centric can check out the Alpine Rush Zip Line, tubing hill or any of the amazing restaurants throughout the village.
This major east coast mountain boasts some great terrain and even better powder but that’s not all they offer. In addition to the pristine snow, Jay Peak also has some incredible water and ice in the form of their Pump House Indoor waterpark and NHL-sized Ice Haus skating rink. If relaxation is what you’re after there’s also the amazing Taiga Spa, a fitness center and Inspired Yoga classes led by a certified instructor.
Whistler Blackcomb may have the most skiable acres on the continent along with more than 200 marked trails, 16 alpine bowls, six different terrain parks and 458 inches of pure dry powder annually, but that’s not all. The resort also offers unparalleled sightseeing via their PEAK2PEAK Gondola, dog sledding tours and bobsleigh programs on track that was used in the 2010 Olympics. These adventures are just a few of the many slope-side activities around North America’s largest ski area.
This ski spot set in Aspen never fails to charm each and every guest—even those not interested in the excellent powder-topped terrain. Ullr Nights, the Friday night gathering that takes place each week, includes family, friends, tubing, snowbiking, ice skating, s’mores, hot chocolate, a bonfire and live music—what more could you ask for? The resort also hosts yoga classes at 11,212 feet with stellar views and some excellent kids programing.
This ski area may be best known for hosting events in the 2002 Winter Olympics, but that’s certainly not the only thing people remember about Park City. The resort has people coming back year after year, not only for the outstanding skiing and riding, but also the one-of-a-kind après culture. Kids and adults alike enjoy zipping down the mountain on the Alpine Coaster or soaring high on the Flying Eagle Zip Line. Though the real après treasure that sets Park City apart is the world-class dining options—guests can take a snowcat-pulled sleigh ride up to a five course meal, enjoy incredible views at the Summit House or simply enjoy a mid-day snack at the Mid-Mountain Lodge.
At Mont Tremblant they say there’s so much to do that guests run out of time before they run out of ways to spend it and they might just be right. In addition to the stellar skiing and boarding the mountain town of Mont Tremblant has tons of shopping, dining and entertainment options—literally steps from the base of the mountain. Take to the outdoors for the snowshoe and fondue tour, sliding evenings on the tubing slopes and dune buggy tours that the whole family can enjoy.
Stowe is the east coast beacon where luxury meets the slopes, so it’s no surprise the resort has something everyone can enjoy. Adventurers, foodies and those looking to escape from stress can all find their niche somewhere among Mt. Mansfield and Spruce Peak, Stowe’s two mountains. From dog sled tours to snowshoeing and then the spa and wellness center, guests at Stowe can build their own dream vacation even if that means avoiding the slopes altogether.
Big White is likely best known for, you guessed it, tons and tons of the fluffy stuff, but the base and the town below has some accolades of its own. To start, the town has more ski-in/ ski-out locations than any other place in Canada and on top of that the village has more than 20 different dining options, two delightful day spas, and a buzzing après ski bar scene featuring live entertainment. Beyond the town, the mountain is a top family resort, with activities like dog sled tours, an ice climbing tower and ice skating, there is certainly something for everyone.