So many mountains, so little time; we know it might be hard to choose where to go when you only have a few precious free days in the season. The Active Times staff would like to help you make the best of your time in the snow. In addition to our gear reviews, ranked lists and interviews with the experts, we’ve started this section to gather the most important information you’ll want to know before booking a trip or heading out for a day on the slopes. Each week we will feature a new mountain, complete with statistics, snow conditions and plans for 2014. So, whether you’re thinking about your next big trip or you’re going last minute, check out the details on the top mountains here.
Location: Teton Village, WY
Chairlift pitch: “This place is beautiful, authentic and the mountain has some of the best terrain in the world! Jackson Hole Mountain Resort (JHMR) is ranked #1 Overall Resort in North America by the annual SKI Magazine Reader’s Poll. Jackson Hole earned the top spot this year, as well as Top 10 rankings in a wide range of areas, from Challenge and Character (both # 1’s) to Lodging (# 3) and Service (# 7). Jackson Hole has evolved, and yes, there are still steep couloirs, bottomless powder and endless backcountry access, but now there is a softer side to the Big One. Better intermediate terrain, more grooming and the best Mountain Sports School in the country make Jackson Hole the perfect destination to take your skiing or riding to the next level. Jackson Hole offers something for everyone on and off the slopes, with and an array of exciting off-mountain activities,” said Anna Cole, a Jackson Hole representative.
True-up Vertical Descent: 4,105 feet, according to mountainvertical.com; 4,139 feet, according to Jacksonhole.com
Ski-able area: 2,500 in-bounds acres and access to more than 3,000 backcountry acres
Ratios of difficulty (trail classification): 10 percent beginner, 40 percent intermediate and 50 percent expert
Number of trails: 116
Number of lifts: 13
Hours of operation: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Avg. annual snowfall: 459 inches
Adult lift ticket price on their website: Prices vary by day, usually costs about $100
Deals and discounts: The discounts offered by Jackson Hole are limited to seniors, military personnel and children five years old and younger.
Renovations: There are tentative plans to add a ropes course to the resorts list of activities. They plan to construct the course during the summer of 2014 and open sometime in August 2014, said Cole.
Events: Jackson Hole is hosting a “three-day lifestyle and music festival” in March. The groups performing are Steel Pulse (a reggae band) and Michael Franti and Spearhead (a band that has had multi-platinum success). Those concerts will be free. See the complete Jackson Hole events calendar here.
Recommendations: The Couloir Resturant sits at the summit of the Bridger Gondola and tops several fine dining lists. The food is described as American cuisine with Rocky Mountain roots, and comes specially recommended by Anna Cole.
Another of her recommendations is the Spur Restaurant & Bar. It’s always good to follow the local’s lead when dining on vacation and Spur is home to local celebrity chef Kevin Humphreys.
Note: Unless otherwise stated, the information above was found at the mountain’s website.