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Ski Resort Life

2015 Top Ski Towns: Crested Butte, Colorado

CB is everything that makes a ski town rad, from locally owned restaurants and shops to coffeehouses filled with people who live for adventure.

I was at an eighth-birthday party this spring for the son of a friend I moved to Crested Butte with 15 years ago. The kids all played soccer while the “adults” drank PBR in the shadow of Crested Butte Mountain. Rowan, the birthday boy, approached the picnic table and asked his mom, “Can I open my presents?” One of the gifts was a Magic 8 Ball, a classic toy that’s been around since 1950. He unpackaged the 8 Ball with a throng of kids surrounding him. Then Rowan asked with heartfelt sincerity, “Will I be a pro skier?” He shook the ball.

2015 Top Ski Towns: Telluride, Colorado

Once the first chairlift started spinning in 1972, Telluride became the ultimate ski town. And that’s one reason we love it.

Back in the day, Telluride produced over $60 million of gold, silver, zinc, copper, and lead. Though the last gold was extracted decades ago, it seems wherever you go in Telluride, mining still gets in your face. Riding the gondola, one can scan east to west from the ginormous, treacherously toxic tailings pile to the pickax-stuffed museum in town. Me, I’m over the mining heritage. In the end, it’s just a bunch of rusted metal.

2015 Top Ski Towns: Ketchum, Idaho

Where the rich and famous write the headlines, but the quirky, passionate locals add the color.
(Photo: Kevin Syms)

2015 Top Ski Towns: Vail, Colorado

There may not be another community in the mountains that so deftly does the destination jujitsu of combining the thrill of outdoor athletics with the buzz of a booming urban environment.
(Photo: Jeff Cricco)

Pete Seibert, a veteran of the 10th Mountain Division, needed $1 million or so in 1961 to build his life’s vision of the ultimate ski resort. He put together a package for investors: $10,000 got you shares in the unbuilt resort and four lifetime season passes for the family.

2015 Top Ski Towns: Aspen, Colorado

Ski bums of all ages may be working three jobs to pay their way in this pricey resort town, but on a powder morning, you’ll find them in the Aspen gondola line.

Aspen. It’s one of the most riffed-on ski towns out there. From Aspen Extreme to Dumb and Dumber, Us Weekly to The New York Times, the widespread image of Aspen is a glitzy celebrity playground, where the billionaires pushed out the millionaires and where no regular Joe could possibly afford to live.

2015 Top Ski Towns: Stowe, Vermont

For anyone who grew up in small-town Vermont, the quaint village feels familiar even today.
(Photo: Paul Rogers Photography)

It could be argued that Sugarbush serves up the best bucolic beauty in Vermont. If powder’s your game, Jay Peak claims the highest snowfall totals in the state.

2015 Top Ski Towns: Park City, Utah

Park City’s roots run so deep, it’ll take more than Vail’s influence to shake things up. Need proof? Go there.
(Photo: Courtesy Park City Resort, Dan Campbell)

There’s been lots of news coming out of Park City over 
the past few years, from the much-contested One Wasatch proposal, which would connect many of Utah’s resorts by chairlifts or gondolas, to Vail’s 2014 purchase of Park City Mountain Resort and its ultra-long

2015 Top Ski Towns: Lake Placid, New York

Lake Placid’s famous Olympic history echoes louder when Mirror Lake is iced over and snowbanks pile high along Main Street.
(Photo: Nancie Battaglia)

It’s because Lake Placid is so beautiful in the summer that it’s so enjoyable in the winter.

A Tale of Two Switzerlands

How can a couple of ski towns in one tiny country have so little in common? Our writer explores rugged Engelberg and refined St. Moritz to find out.

 Posh St. Moritz (Photo: Courtesy Engleberg-Titlis Tourism/Ali Cinek)

Local’s Guide to Banff, Alberta

Here are enough reasons to put Alberta’s most iconic town on your to-do list.
(Photo: Banff Lake Louise Tourism / Paul Zizka Photography)

Bucket list alert: If you only make it to one Canadian destination in your life, it should be Banff. Summer, fall, winter, spring—it doesn’t matter, just get there.

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