Vail, Colorado

Nov 1, 2008
Outside Magazine
Skiing Vail, Colorado

Sailing down Vail’s slopes    Photo: Jeff Cirro/courtesy, Colorado Tourism

Tell Us What You Think

Did we nail the best resorts in North America? Or did we miss your favorite ski area? Weigh in on our ski resort smackdown.

Snowfall: 348 inches
Area: 5,289 acres
Vertical Drop: 3,450 feet

The state of Vermont offers about 6,200 acres of skiing at 20 resorts. Vail, all by its lonesome, serves up 5,289 skiable acres—most of them in the wide-open, seemingly endless Back Bowls. All that ungroomed snow used to beat up even the best skiers, but today's fat skis let you ride screaming sweeper turns as if you were on a buffed-out groomer (1,600 acres of which Vail offers). The hill's ski school is unmatched, which will keep the kids happy. Meanwhile, the pub-crawl scene through Vail village—recently renovated to the tune of more than $1 billion—should keep you busy at night. Bonus: You can catch a frequent and free bus ride home, so there's no need to rent a car.

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