There is no question that Connecticut is one of the most beautiful states in America. Its lush green landscape, its picturesque coastline, the fact that it is home to Yankee Stadium; it has it all. However, not many people know that the skiing scene in Connecticut is one of the best in the country. If you are looking for a place to ski or simply want to learn more about the great state of Connecticut, then this article is for you. Here we will discuss the top 10 ski resorts in Connecticut and where you can find them.
Bristol is located in the southwestern corner of the state, only an hour from New York City and its many attractions. Its elevation is only 1100 feet, which makes for some pretty thin slopes. The longest ski run is only one mile long, and the average yearly snowfall is only 12 inches. The main street in Bristol is completely lined with restaurants and hotels, making it the focal point of the community. It gets busy during the winter months and offers a nice variety of accommodations and amenities for both beginners and experts.
Canaan is one of the oldest ski resorts in America. It was founded in 1934 and is situated in rural Northwest Connecticut, about an hour and a half from New York City. Due to its remote location, only 400 meters of trails, and its elevation (3600 feet), the resort sometimes gets overshadowed by its more famous neighbor, Gore Mountain. However, make no mistake; this is a serious ski resort with some of the longest and best-named ski runs in the country. It used to be a summer camp for kids from New York City, and it still hosts an annual Manhattan Project ski race, where professional skiers and snowboarders compete in a cross-country ski race that follows a trail through the woods and up the mountainside. For the best experience, rent a bicycle at the resort and explore the countryside on your own terms!
Located in the northwest corner of the state, about an hour from Boston and Providence, is the smallest of the Big Three (GORETTI, SKI BRISTOL, and SKI LEDGE) but certainly not the least. This resort got its name from the ledge that runs along the entire backcountry, forming a natural barrier against floods and icy winds. The ski season in Ledge runs from mid-December to April. Due to its size and its rural location, the lodge does not provide any lodging, but bus service is available, directly from the New York City area. Despite being the smallest of the big three, Ledge offers a variety of trails and a couple of chairlift that take you to the top of the mountain. There are more than 300 acres of skiable terrain at Ledge, with over 30 trails open for the season. The mountain is owned by Boston’s Fenix Outdoor Foundation and is considered a charity, so there is no charge for using its facilities. Campsites are available for rent, and the resort also hosts an annual golf tournament, the Fenix Open, which raises money for charity.
Vermont is located in the northeastern corner of the state and is considered to be the least expensive of the big three (with the possible exception of Hunter, located in West Virginia). The skiing season in Vermont runs from mid-December to April, and the state’s largest ski resort, Stowe, gets pretty crowded during the peak season. However, that is not the case the rest of the year. Stowe is known for its classic skiing experience and is the home of the famous Vermont Ski & Snowboard Club, which was founded in 1896 and is one of the oldest ski clubs in America. It is also the birthplace of alpine skiing. Today, Stowe is just a tiny village in the center of the state. When you visit, you will immediately feel that you have left the busy world behind and are in for a real treat. The village is located at the base of the mountain and offers a range of activities, from ski instruction to snowshoeing to horseback riding. It also has a small glacier next to the hotel that is open for the public to explore. There are 34 trails, 5 mountains, and 18 groomed lakes on this resort. Stowe is also the starting point for the 100-mile Long Trail, one of the longest rail-trails in America. This trail, named the Katahdin 100, connects Stowe to the majestic Mount Katahdin (5365 feet), the tallest mountain in Maine, and passes through nine other ski resorts along the way.
Ski New Hampshire
Less than two hours away from Boston is the beautiful ski resort of NH, located in the town of Franconia. One of the best things about this resort is that it is absolutely free. The Appalachian ski runs are some of the most challenging in the country, and the New Hampshire Wild Forest provides a very adventurous skier or boarder with all the trees they can eat berries off of! If you love an honest day of skiing and want to have fun without paying a penny, then NH is the place for you. The ski season in New Hampshire runs from mid-December to April, and the resort itself is a work of art, with its collection of wooden cabins and stone lodges that provide lodging for skiers and snowboarders.
The longest ski run in the country, the Million Dollar View, opens to the public from mid-December to mid-April, and the ski season in western West Virginia runs from late-December to mid-April. This resort, which also happens to be the highest ski resort in the country, was originally known as Hunter Mountain but was renamed in honor of John D. Rockefeller, who contributed to its construction and paid for the upkeep of the entire mountain throughout the year. The views from the top of the mountain are absolutely breathtaking, and they are free, too! There is actually a trail that takes you directly to the top of the mountain, where you can see all the trails and the surrounding hillsides covered in white, up-close and personal. On a clear day, you can see for miles! The ski runs here are great and range from beginner to expert, with some amazing panoramic views in between. Despite being one of the smaller resorts in the region and not having the highest elevation, Hunter provides a wonderful winter sports experience for skiers and snowboarders of all skill levels. Like the other resorts on this list, Hunter does not provide lodging, but there are a variety of hotels, B&Bs, and cabin rentals, if you are looking for a place to stay.
Ski New York
Just like Connecticut, New York is home to a fantastic ski resort, named after itself! Located in the Adirondack Mountains, high in the southern part of the state, it also gets pretty crowded in the winter, especially in the smaller towns. The skiing season in New York runs from mid-December to April and takes place in the southern part of the state, near the Vermont and New Hampshire borders. The town of Lake Placid hosts the annual ice hockey Masters tournament, the Lake Placid Winter Olympics, in early April, and the whole country takes a break from their regular routine to watch Ice Hockey! The Lake Placid facility actually hosts the top hockey players in the world and can draw huge crowds, especially after the tournament ends.
Located in the southern part of the state, near the New Hampshire and Vermont borders, is the third-largest ski resort in the country, located in the town of Billingsgate. The skiing season in Massachusetts runs from mid-December to April and is considered one of the better seasons, thanks to the state itself being located near the Caribbean! The largest town in the region, Springfield, is actually home to the University of Massachusetts, and the city’s Northampton Campus is where the Amherst College ski team trains during the winter. Billingsgate is a small town located right on the brink of the spectacular Blue Hills. This is the closest the area gets to Europe, and the views of the surrounding mountains are simply breath-taking. There are 74 trails here, ranging from expert to beginner. The biggest advantage of skiing in Massachusetts is that the whole state is covered in snow, so you will always be able to find some mountains that you can ski on.