“Eight Peaks! Need I say more?” Readers agree there is a lot to love about the River. Famously “aggressive” snowmaking buries its 743 acres of trails and glades, and there’s no shortage of terrain. From the challenging steeps of White Cap at the resort’s eastern edge, through the bustling family-friendly terrain at South Ridge, across the gladed and wild Land of Oz to scenic rambling Lollapalooza on the west end, there’s something to satisfy every ability. “Getting from one side to the other is a trek, but once you figure out how to navigate, it’s a lot of fun.” No. 4–ranked Lifts and Grooming help see to that. Après-ski, choose from a wide variety of resort amenities, or escape to the quaint town of Bethel for a true touch of Maine. It’s a big area with “a lot of Bostonians,” but it still has a “great local vibe.” —Edie Thys Morgan
+Best at recovering from bad weather.
-Lodging needs upgrading. Crowded.
Mandatory Run » White Heat, a.k.a. the “longest, steepest, widest lift-served trail in the East.”
Family Activity » Mushing at dusk under a pink sky behind a team of Iditarodtrained dogs.
Don’t Miss » First tracks for serious miles. Load the Chondola at 7:15 a.m. for 45 crowd-free minutes on Spruce Peak, then hit Peak Lodge for its famous cinnamon buns.