Everybody, by now, knows that Smugg’s is a great family resort. No. 1 in the East year after year. So… bunny slopes? Sure. (See Morse Mountain.) But all those hardcore locals booting up at their cars over in ski-in, ski-out Lot 1 know that Smugg’s has some of Vermont’s toughest terrain too (see Madonna Mountain, Back Bowls), and that its slopes are never crowded, thanks to fixed-grip lifts. So Smugg’s, pleaser of all (except fans of high-speeds), rises to no. 3 overall this year, mostly on the strengths of its Lodging (4), Off-Hill Activities (4), Value (5) and Overall Satisfaction (5). “Outstanding family resort,” says one reader, echoing many. “Low-key, unsnobbish,” says another. “A kid-friendly place with steeps for Dad.” In the end, it’s hard to tell who likes Smugg’s more, the families or the hardcores. And for hardcore families, Smugg’s is “the family ski vacation perfected.” —J.C.
Trail Recommendation » FIS, a narrow meander from the top, lets you imagine skiing the former FIS-level downhill course at 70 mph.
Don’t Miss » The Arbortrek Zipline Canopy Tour: Clip in and fly like Tarzan among the treetops. It’s a total rush.
What’s New » A new Burton learn-to-ride center for the kiddies, complete with tow-along boards, called Riglets, for the littlest rippers. (See Family, page 58.)