Dec 04, 2008
number of runs
Vail's expansive terrain, never-ending backbowls, and service and luxury combine to make it one of Colorado's best.
Ranked No. 7 overall by readers in our 2010 Resort Guide
Snowmass delivers with the family-friendly Treehouse center, as well as terrain suitable for all ages.
Mt. Bachelor is not your typical mountain. At other resorts, the highest point often is difficult to distinguish from neighboring summits, which may be just a few feet higher or lower. But Mt. Bachelor, a stately volcanic cone that is part of the Cascades mountain range, rises from Oregon's high desert and is visible for miles in every direction. On the eastern side of the Cascades, where snow falls lighter and drier than at other Northwestern resorts, Mt. Bachelor has become a popular destination for Western skiers and snowboarders. Despite no on-mountain lodging and little nightlife, Mt. Bachelor attracts visitors with its dependable snowpack, clear dry air, average day-time winter temperatures of 26 degrees, and fine skiing and snowboarding from early November into July. Visitors should keep in mind that all that snow results from a lot of storms, and winds often close the Summit Express chair, a high-speed quad to the 9,065-foot treeless summit. An average stormy day brings winds of 60 to 70 miles per hour, which can kick up ground blizzards where the snow swirls into a whiteout six feet high. (Visibility is usually better lower on the mountain, where the ski trails are protected by trees.) But when the weather is clear and you're standing on top, you can see California's Mt. Shasta 180 miles to the south.Between the Outback and Red chairs is an unusual geologic feature, a lone cinder cone. It's not lift-served, so powder lasts there until it's wind-packed. By getting up a head of steam from Leeway, skiers can swoop up nearly two-thirds of the way and climb the rest.