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White Lines: North American Ski Resorts

For those in search of perfect North American powder, look no farther than these 10 ski resorts
Larry Olmsted
From the Print Edition:
Vince McMahon, Nov/Dec 99

(continued from page 6)

The rest of the mountain is no slouch, with some great glades, which are not well marked and require exploration, and the steep, narrow mogul runs for which Sugarbush is famous. While mogul runs at other Eastern resorts tend to be long, straight and wide, à la Sunday River's White Heat or Killington, Vermont's Outer Limits, these are curving, thin and, when a coat of Vermont ice develops on them, next to impossible to ski. But when the sun is out and the snow is soft, the bumps are great, as are the views, easily the best in the state.  

The lower half of Lincoln Peak has lots of easier terrain, but intermediates and beginners should head instead for Mt. Ellen, which generally has less intimidating trails. When the resort gets crowded, and lift lines develop, experts can sneak over to Ellen and find plenty of challenge on the steep bumps that cover the upper portion of the mountain.  

Planning a trip: Sugarbush has some lodging and dining along its access road, most notably the resort-owned Sugarbush Inn. For ski-in, ski-out convenience, the plethora of condos are the only choice. The town of Waitsfield, just minutes from the slopes, is pure New England bliss, with Colonial buildings, small inns and restaurants. This is where most visitors stay. The closest airport is in Burlington, Vermont, half an hour away.

Vermont-based Larry Olmsted previously wrote about heli-skiing for Cigar Aficionado.


For die-hard skiers, the quality of the skiing is what matters most, but some people consider other factors in planning the perfect ski vacation. Many resorts excel in ways not reflected in the quantity or quality of their terrain. If more than skiing is important to you, consider the following  

BEST NIGHTLIFE/DINING:   1. Aspen 2.Whistler-Blackcomb 3. Vail  

BEST SKI HOTELS:   1. Hyatt Regency Beaver Creek 2. TIE: Little Nell, Aspen; St. Regis, Aspen; The Peaks at Telluride 5. Chateau Whistler, Whistler-Blackcomb  

BEST RESORTS FOR TOTAL CONVENIENCE:   1. Whistler-Blackcomb 2. Telluride 3. Vail and Beaver Creek  

SHORTEST LIFT LINES:   1. Jackson Hole and Grand Targhee 2. Telluride 3. Alta 4. Sunday River 5. Aspen  

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