The Finest Epic and Ikon Move Resorts to Go to in 2020-21

The Best Epic and Ikon Pass Resorts to Visit in 2020-21

On account of COVID-19, resorts are instituting reservation programs, capping every day guests, nixing same-day ticket gross sales, and abiding by native laws (learn: closed bars and limited-capacity eating places). The excellent news is snowboarding and snowboarding are socially distant by design, and Vail Resorts’ Epic Move and Alterra Mountain Firm’s Ikon Move are higher values than ever.

Epic passholders are prioritized in Vail’s reservation system and Ikon passholders are exempt from ticket-sale restrictions at Alterra resorts. That’s 76 U.S. resorts the place you’ll haven’t any hassle ripping laps this winter. Right here’s the way to choose which cross is best for you.

Chairlift at Snowbird resort
Chairlift at Snowbird resort Chris Wellhausen

1. Steep and Deep

If you wish to spend your days careening down dizzying pitches, these mountains have a number of the most electrifying terrain your coronary heart might want (and legs can deal with).


The resort’s famed pitches and powder stashes are off the Excessive Carry at Teocalli Bowl and Headwall. For an inbounds, avalanche-controlled space that feels extra like a backcountry paradise (suppose powder pillows, cliff bands, and some 45-degree strains that require complete dedication) head to the North Face.

Keep: The slope-side Elevation Lodge boasts a decked-out pool and spa to nurse sore muscle groups.


Regardless of having simply 1,800 vertical toes, you continue to get open glades, corduroy runs, and loads of steeps, together with virtually all the Mill Valley facet of the mountain (perfect early on a powder day). For a burly journey, hike quarter-hour from the highest of seventh Heaven raise to the height of Cowboy Mountain.

Keep: There’s no lodging at Stevens Move; head to the Bavarian Lodge 35 miles east in Leavenworth.


PCMR is the biggest resort within the U.S. and nonetheless one way or the other underrated for its double-black runs, together with 10,026-foot Jupiter Peak, a hike-to-only space that’s avalanche managed by ski patrol. On a powder day, the chutes usually get full of windblown snow, growing its thrills. Ninety-9 90 can be affected by gnarly runs, like Magic Line.

Keep and Eat: Principal & SKY is inside strolling distance to Excessive West Distillery, which, along with spirits, presents distinctive meals within the adjoining Nelson Cottage.



JHMR is the gold normal for lift-accessed backcountry. Ebook a information with Jackson Gap Mountain Sports activities Faculty to discover safely. On the slopes, the Aerial Tram presents 4,139 toes of vertical, and Casper Bowl (not accessible by tram) has a number of the most difficult chutes.

Keep: Diehards ought to go to the 4 Seasons at Teton Village for out-the-door entry within the morning. In any other case ebook the polished Lodge Jackson; it’s on the town close to the Million Greenback Cowboy Bar.


Taos is so well-known for its steeps, an indication in entrance of the principle raise reads “Don’t fear… we now have straightforward runs too.” The Kachina Peak raise accesses wide-open, high-elevation black-diamond runs, however locals know a number of the greatest photographs are hike-to runs alongside Highline and West Basin.

Keep and Eat: Keep at The Blake, the resort’s new 80-room alpine guesthouse adjoining to Carry 1. Bavarian Restaurant—harking back to an Alps chalet— is a can’t-miss après spot, with sauerbraten, wienerschnitzel, and German beers.


At Alta, check your self and hike Mount Baldy. It’s open solely often and requires an hourlong boot pack, however scoring a couple of recent turns is definitely worth the sweat. Snowbird has dozens of memorable runs instantly off the Tram, however head to Gad 2 chairlift on your choose of steep glades.

Keep: Shell out for a room at The Cliff Lodge at Snowbird; the highway up the canyon closes throughout large storms and, if it does, you’ll have the mountain virtually to your self.

Fireworks at Steamboat Ski Resort in Colorado
Fireworks at Steamboat Ski Resort in Colorado Courtesy Picture

2. Bumps, Jumps, and Beer

Pinball throughout a mountain, tackling pitches, pillows, moguls, and drops by day, then desk your elbows for some heat grub and a frosty beer by night time, at these scorching spots.



Plunge Carry is stuffed with steep glades and egg-carton runs like Kant-Mak-M, with 800 vertical toes of moguls. The hike-to terrain atop the Prospect Categorical raise has steep, difficult bump runs that mercifully lead into buffedout screamers.

Eat: Kick off the day by gorging down a chorizo and migas breakfast burrito at La Cocina de Luz. At night time, stroll to Brown Canine Pizza to carb up, then wind down with sativa chocolate from Telluride Bud Firm.


Breck has the best lift-accessed terrain within the U.S., at 12,840 toes, simply off the Imperial Categorical SuperChair. The strains up prime are steep chutes or bowls, which flip into quad-burning bump runs. Whale’s Tail, between Peak 7 and eight, is often loaded with tender bumps, and funnels naturally into Vertigo, one of many mountain’s greatest steep mogul runs.

Eat: At Breckenridge Distillery, pattern certainly one of their whiskeys or juniper-heavy gin alongside chef David Burke’s patented steaks, dry-aged in Himalayan pink salt.


The unique vacation spot ski resort in North America nonetheless presents celeb sightings and a rowdy nightlife (or what passes for it today). For bump lovers, Exhibition is without doubt one of the most iconic mogul runs within the West. New this yr is a high-speed quad that’ll open up 380 acres on Bald Mountain, with an open bowl up prime that feeds into freshly thinned glades.

Eat: Seize the most effective burger on the town at Michel’s Christiania, the place Ernest Hemingway himself ate. (Reservations are a should.)



The mountain’s identify will change in 2021, however its 6,000 acres, which have lengthy attracted a number of the largest showoffs in snowboarding, will stay the identical. Take KT-22 Categorical raise for Moseley’s Run—a protracted, fall-line bumps run named after Olympic mogul champ Jonny Moseley.

Eat: Seize après drinks on the Tram Automotive Bar, a restored 1970sera tram. Ikon Move holders get offers, like a free Backscratcher, a spicy riff on the Moscow Mule.


The “Beast of the East” boasts 3,050 vertical toes of using—probably the most in New England. Check your mettle (and knees) on Bear Mountain’s Outer Limits, a half-mile of moguls careening instantly down the autumn line. Carve down the 6.2-mile Juggernaut, the longest path within the East, or take pleasure in some cruisers on Killington Peak and Snowdon Mountain.

Eat: Journey to Rutland, 15 miles away, to chow down on an ancho pepper ribeye, then wash it down with a craft beer at Roots the Restaurant.


Steamboat is legendary for its excellent glades, trademarked (actually) champagne powder, and crowd-free runs. The
evenly spaced aspen and fir timber maintain powder days after an enormous dump, and its two hottest glades, Shadows and Closets, are 1,900 vertical toes of branch-free enjoyable.

Keep and Eat: The slope-side Steamboat Grand resort has an 85,000-gallon heated outside pool and full-service spa. At Laundry, snack on small bites and sip a Fiery Margarita, created from pepper-infused tequila and lemongrass easy syrup.

Family skiing at Northstar California resort
Household snowboarding at Northstar California resort Brian David Elledge

3. Household-Pleasant (With a Facet of Thrills)

Planning a household ski journey that pleases the little ones and sneaks in some stoke of your personal can look like a harebrained endeavor—however these resorts show you actually can have all of it.



The majority of the resort’s 150 runs are immaculate blues and greens, plus many ski faculty instructors are person- personable former execs. Children will go ready bonkers for the skating rink, Thursday night time fireworks, and devoted studying terrain.

Keep: The Osprey is subtle but homey, and the Strawberry Park raise is correct exterior. For an improve, ebook the Trappers Cabin; it sleeps 10, has ski-in/ski-out entry, and a private chef.


This resort blends California cool with European attraction. Its 3,170 acres are cut up properly between buffed-out groomers and more difficult glades, like Burnout and Monument Glade. For the youngsters—and limber adults—there’s a terrain park with flawless halfpipes and well-maintained jumps.

Keep and Eat: Relaxation your head at One Village Place. Two chairlifts out entrance make it straightforward to get the youngsters organized and out. Hit up Rubicon Pizza Co., adopted by Italian-level gelato at Euro Snack.


Since Vail Resorts bought the mountain in 2017, Stowe underwent main upgrades, making it arguably the most effective large resort within the East. There are 314 inches of annual snowfall on 485 skiable acres, over 50 % of that are blues.

Keep and Eat: Stoweflake Mountain Resort and Spa is a fast, free trolley journey to the mountain and throughout the road from native favourite Piecasso pizzeria.



With 4 peaks to select from, Snowmass has extra acres of terrain (3,342) than Aspen’s three different resorts mixed. There are many wide-open cruisers and more difficult runs, like these on the East Wall.

Keep and Eat: The Viceroy Snowmass has a heated outside pool for the youngsters and a 7,000-square-foot spa for world-weary dad and mom. Snowmass Village is faraway from the Aspen scene, however nonetheless shut sufficient to city and barbecue joint Hickory Home.


Large Sky is without doubt one of the largest resorts in North America, with 5,850 skiable acres, 4,350 toes of vertical, and 45-degree slopes beneath the Lone Peak Tram. It’s additionally filled with mellow groomers, and has kiddie perks like a tubing hill and 7 terrain parks—plus fats biking on the resort and Bozeman’s dinosaur-heavy Museum of the Rockies solely an hour away.

Keep: The Whitewater Inn has a pool with a 90-foot waterslide, excellent for younger children, whereas the Summit Lodge is extra upscale.


The resort sprawls over eight peaks and 870 acres of terrain, with 53 miles of trails, making it one of many largest on the East Coast. It’s additionally nice for novices; greater than two-thirds of the runs are blues and greens. There’s tubing and dogsledding if the youngsters’ legs get bored with touring the mountain.

Keep: The Grand Summit Lodge has ski-in/ski-out entry, and a heated outside pool and scorching tub.

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