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Stratton, Vermont
Photograph: Hubert Schriebl

The 15 best snowboarding resorts in the USA

Hit the slopes this winter at the best snowboarding resorts in the U.S.

By Jessica Estrada and Sarah Medina
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If you're planning a winter vacation, you want to spend as much time outside as possible, right? That part is made easy, when you head to one of the best snowboarding resorts in the USA. From California to Maine, the best places to go snowboarding in the U.S. include plenty of runs for all skill sets (bring along the kiddies and make it a family vacation) and gorgeous views of mountains, lakes and forests to boot. And, if snowboarding just isn’t your thing, stick to the classics and visit the best ski resorts in America instead.

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Best snowboarding resorts

Mammoth Mountain, California
Mammoth Mountain, California
Photograph: Peter Morning

1. Mammoth Mountain, CA

With 300 days of sunshine and 400 inches of snowfall per year, Mammoth Mountain is truly the snowy playground that snowboarders dream of. Situated at 11,053 feet above sea level, the winter wonderland has 3,500 acres of snowboarding terrain and a season stretches into July (yup, July!). Off the snowboard, there’s tons to do here, including fun snowmobile rides, gondola rides offering awe-inspiring views, snowcat tours, bowling and indoor golf. 

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Vail Mountain
Vail Mountain
Photograph: Courtesy Vail Mountain

2. Vail, CO

There’s no denying it: Vail is the place to be for snowboarding. Just ask the pro riders from around the globe who fly in for the annual Burton US Open Snowboarding Championships at Vail’s Golden Peak Terrain Park. With two half pipes, nine jumps (that go as high as 50 feet!) and 30 jibs, it’s no wonder riders love the terrain park. And did we mention Vail’s famous back bowls?

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Snowboarding Oregon
Snowboarding Oregon
Photograph: Shutterstock

3. Mt. Bachelor, OR

Get your camera ready because Mt. Bachelor offers some of the best views you’ve ever seen. It’s completely surrounded by the spectacular Deschutes National Forest (two million acres of it, to be exact) so there’s nothing but wilderness in sight. Unlike your typical mountain resort, there’s no on-mountain lodging or base village, but that’s exactly what makes it so special. Snowboarders will feel completely immersed in nature as they’re sliding down the 4,318 acres of terrain that ranges from the easy to the extreme. 

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Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows
Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows
Photograph: Courtesy Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows

4. Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadows, CA

Stunning views of Lake Tahoe and the Sierra Nevada Mountains are just two of the reasons snowboarders from all over flock to Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadows come wintertime. Other reasons to love the area: 450 inches of annual snowfall, 271 sunny days a year, 4,000 acres of open bowl riding, six peaks, 29 lifts, six parks and a halfpipe. Need we say more?

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Whiteface Mountain, New York
Whiteface Mountain, New York
Photograph: Courtesy ORDA/ Whiteface Lake Placid

5. Whiteface Mountain, NY

Whiteface Mountain has hosted the Olympic Winter Games not once but twice (in 1932 and 1980)—one of the many facts you will learn while visiting the Lake Placid Olympic Museum. The snow here is divine thanks to the mountain’s jaw-droppingly high vertical drop (the highest east of the Rockies!). With 86 trails covering 22 powdery miles, there’s a little something for every snowboarder here, including dramatic glades for adrenaline junkies and smooth slopes for those who just want to cruise.

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Stratton, Vermont
Stratton, Vermont
Photograph: Hubert Schriebl

6. Stratton, VT

For novice snowboarders who really want to step up their game, Stratton is where it’s at. Known as the first ski resort to embrace snowboarding, this powdery Vermont spot features 97 trails spread across 670 snow-covered acres of terrain, 40 percent of which is ideal for beginners. As if the majestic mountain wasn’t enough, the resort also has its own Stratton Mountain School where you can learn how to ride like a pro from Olympic bronze medalist Ross Powers (alumni include Olympic snowboarders Linsdey Jacobellis and Danny Davis).

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Telluride Ski Resort, Colorado
Telluride Ski Resort, Colorado
Photograph: Courtesy Telluride Ski Resort

7. Telluride Ski Resort, CO

Tucked away in Colorado, Telluride offers varied terrain ideal for beginners and seasoned snowboarders alike. Advanced riders can blaze down the Plunge or hike to the extreme terrain of the 13,000-foot Palmyra Peak while newbies can practice their skills on the gentle slopes of Ute Park or Prospect Bowl. Don’t expect big crowds here: the slopes are pretty quiet, which means more room for you to enjoy. 

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Park City Mountain Resort
Park City Mountain Resort
Photograph: Courtesy Park City Mountain Resort

8. Park City Mountain Resort, UT

Touted as the largest ski resort in the country, Park City boasts over 7,300 acres of terrain complete with more than 330 trails, 14 bowls, an Olympic-sized halfpipe and eight terrain parks. Can you say snowboarder’s paradise? Although the majority of the terrain here is best suited for intermediate and expert boarders, novices are also welcome to hone their skills at the Ski and Snowboard School, which offers private and group lessons for boarders of all levels.

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Big Sky Resort
Big Sky Resort
Photograph: Courtesy Big Sky Resort

9. Big Sky Resort, MT

A sprawling Montana resort, Big Sky sees an average of 400 inches of snow every year. Boarders will dig the seven terrain parks, 4,350 vertical feet and 5,800 acres of varied terrain. We’re talking glades, fast groomers, high-alpine steeps, an epic 11,166-foot Lone Peak Summit and the experts-only Headwaters rocky ridge.

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Mt. Hood Meadows, Oregon
Mt. Hood Meadows, Oregon
Photograph: Shutterstock

10. Mt. Hood Meadows, OR

Just 90 minutes away from Portland, Mt. Hood Meadows boasts 2,150 acres and 2,777 vertical feet of mountain fun. Experienced riders can plunge down Heather canyon or venture down gladed tree runs, while beginners can hone their skills on the smoother slopes. Meadows also features a variety of snowboard terrain parks that are worth checking out, especially the 18-foot superpipe.

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Crested Butte
Crested Butte
Photograph: Crested Butte Mountain Resort/Trent Bona

11. Crested Butte, CO

Crested Butte is fun for the whole family. Although more than half of the mountain’s 1,547 acres of terrain are for advanced riders only, those new to the snow sport can spend their time cruising down the groomed runs from the top of Paradise Express Lift, practicing at one of the three terrain parks complete with boxes, rails and jibs, or exploring Crested Butte via zipline, snowshoes or snowbike.

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Snowboarding
Snowboarding
Photograph: Shutterstock

12. Jackson Hole, WY

If you’re new to snowboarding, Jackson Hole is probably not the best place to vacation. For expert riders, however, it’s a magical wonderland with 90 percent of the trails suited for intermediate and advanced snowboarders. Expect 2,500 acres of in-bound terrain with a whopping 4,139-foot vertical drop and, as if that wasn’t enough, there’s also a halfpipe and two terrain parks to play on. 

 

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Taos Ski Valley
Taos Ski Valley
Photograph: Courtesy Thatcher Dorn for Taos Ski Valley

13. Taos, NM

For more than 60 years now, snowboarders from all over have been flocking to Taos. The snowy northern New Mexico resort—replete with over 110 trails and a freestyle terrain park—sees an average of 305 inches of snowfall and more than 300 sunshine-filled days every year. About half of Taos’ terrain is for the adrenaline junkies who crave a challenge like the Kachina Peak (12,481 feet). 

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Sun Valley
Sun Valley
Photograph: Courtesy Sun Valley

14. Sun Valley, ID

Sun Valley lures in snowboarders from around the country with not just one mountain but two sunshine-drenched ones. Beginners can swoosh down the smooth, open runs of Dollar Mountain or have fun at the terrain park complete with 76 trails and a 22-foot high superpipe (the largest in the Northwest!). Meanwhile, Bald Mountain has everything advanced riders crave, including groomers, glades and a dramatic 3,400-foot drop.

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Heavenly Ski Resort
Heavenly Ski Resort
Photograph: Courtesy Heavenly Ski Resort

15. Heavenly Ski Resort, CA

Located right on the border of California and Nevada, the dreamy Heavenly Ski Resort offers a view of the dazzling cobalt-waters of Lake Tahoe that just can’t be beat. Expect 97 trails and two terrain parks that cater to a range of skill levels. Beginners can practice their tricks at Groove Park, while experienced riders looking for a challenge can find it at High Roller Park.

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