If Snowshoe seems almost identical to a high-end resort out West, only smaller, there’s good reason: it’s owned by Intrawest, which also operates Steamboat and Winter Park, among others. You’ll find all of the amenities—from a quaint-but-not-over-the-top central resort village to immaculately groomed slopes buried beneath thick carpets of snow. Even during dry winters the skiing is still top-notch, as long as there hasn’t been a big melt and freeze, due to the resort’s expansive snowmaking equipment. The climate at the base (3,300 feet) is surprisingly frigid and more comparable to New Hampshire than what you might think for a Southern state. The main drawback is the size. Snowshoe’s vertical drop is 1,500 feet, and its 57 trails, served by 14 lifts, can get crowded on weekends with college students from western Virginia and escapees from Washington, D.C.