Top Stories

The latest news, deals, and events from ski resorts throughout North America.

Insider Guide: Monarch Ski Area

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Monarch Mountain has been a locals' mountain since the first rope tow in 1939 -- grabbing consistently light powder snow from its 11,900-foot perch atop the Continental Divide. Not the largest (800 acres and five lifts) or longest (1,000 vertical), but Monarch has a down-home, fixed-grip character unlike its bigger Colorado neighbors to the north and west.

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Japan's Ski Areas Are Having Their Worst Winter in Decades

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Japan’s ski resorts are suffering through one of the worst snow seasons on record, disappointing locals and foreign tourists and jeopardizing the country’s budding reputation as an international ski destination.

On the northern island of Hokkaido, where resorts like Niseko are known for reliable, fresh powder, the snow failed to fall in December and remains scant in the new year. In Sapporo, ski competitions have been canceled and the city is trucking in snow for its annual snow festival. December’s snowfall there was the lowest since the Japan Meteorological Agency began keeping records in 1961.

At resorts farther south, conditions are worse. In Nagano, site of the 1998 Winter Olympics, skiers dodge wide patches of grass on the slopes. In Zao, where Japanese kids usually squeal over ‘snow monsters’ created by sticky downfalls that cover trees, there are few to be found. Niigata, setting for the classic novel “Snow Country,’’ has had a quarter of its usual accumulation.

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Backcountry Downhill Skiing in Minnesota? You Betcha

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In the snowiest area of Minnesota, on the slopes of the Sawtooth Hills that rise above Lake Superior, a small group of skiers make waves in otherwise untrammeled drifts.

They call themselves Superior Highland Backcountry and they are having a blast doing something most Minnesotans have never heard of.

The idea is to hike or ski uphill in wild areas — or up mountains if you have them — and then ski back down, on specialized equipment that can grip on the way uphill and glide on the way down. You ski between trees, around rocks, over humps and bumps usually through powdery, unpacked snow. The sport is huge in western mountain states, growing in Vermont and the east and in its infancy on the hills of Minnesota's Arrowhead region between Finland and Lutsen.

 Read the full story at DuluthNewsTribune.com
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Sunlight Trails — The Stories Behind the Ski Run Names

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Winter brings renewed wonder when locals and visitors alike take to the trails at Glenwood Springs’ own Sunlight Mountain ski resort.

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Long-shuttered Colorado Ski Area May Be Reopened

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Nearly 200 miles south of Denver, near the New Mexico border in a picturesque valley on the eastern slope of the Sangre de Cristo range, a long-shuttered ski area is showing hopeful signs of life.

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SnoCountry SnoCast: Ending January on a Snowy Note

Whistler

The final weekend of January delivers fresh, snowy conditions for both the west and the east. Some areas will measure in the feet. Read on for more details of this weekend’s weather outlook.

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This Once Bankrupt Slope is Doing Something Different in N.J.'s Ski Town

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A “never-ever” before skier, 17-year-old Cherish Jenkins, went gliding down the ski and snowboard learning area at the National Winter Activity Center, natural as could be.

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Fat Tire Winter Biking Popular At Some Midwest Resorts

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Fat tire winter biking, an option at some resorts in Michigan’s northern Lower Peninsula and northern Minnesota, also now offers rentals and one even lift service. Check it out.

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Loon Mountain Resort to Install First Eight-Place Chairlift in East

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Loon Mountain Resort today announced the installation of an eight-place, high-speed bubble chairlift—the first anywhere in the eastern United States and only the second in North America, for the 2020/21 ski season. The Doppelmayr lift will showcase the manufacturer’s new D-Line technology, making it the most technologically advanced lift ever installed in the East and one that will provide unrivaled speed and comfort for skiers.

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Insider Guide: Wolf Creek

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Anyone who hears the words "Colorado" and "powder" in the same sentence best expects "Wolf Creek" to follow closely behind.

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SnoCountry SnoCast: Best Snowstorm In A While For Many

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Following milder weather that has brought mixed precipitation storms, a solid snow is on the way for many. This is the best-looking system in a little while!

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Overcrowding At Washington's Crystal Mountain Prompts Limited Ticket Sales

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Turning skiers and riders away from a resort on a powder day is not what resorts want to do but, in the case of Crystal Mountain, there was not a choice.

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Insider Guide: Taos Ski Valley

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Taos Ski Valley is a skier's mountain. Not for the faint of heart. It can match steeps with any in the Rockies. And, if storms course far enough south, it's a dry powder snow-pocket nonpareil. Six years of new ownership has smartly overhauled the lifts and base areas of this venerable original-family resort, including high-end hotel The Blake and chairlift to the top of Kachina Peak.

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Skibiking is Here

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Snow bikes have been offered at ski resorts out West for 20 years but have just reached Maine. The winter bikes are for rent at Sugarloaf and Sunday River.

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Five Reasons To Visit Big Sky Montana If You Don’t Ski

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An hour's drive from Bozeman, Big Sky Ski Resort is one of the largest in North America, but there's plenty to do around here for non-skiers too and the majestic mountain scenery will take your breath away.

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Heli-Skiing In U.S.: Heading Deep Into Pow' Territory

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Taking a helicopter to find untouched powder isn't only for skiers and riders in Alaska or Canada: Plenty of runs can be had in the Lower 48, too.

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Insiders Guide: Perfect North Slopes

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Perfect North Slopes, located in southern Indiana along the Kentucky border a stone's throw away from Cincinnati, is a lower Midwest ski area that has more in common with its northern brethren in Michigan.

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With Challenge, Skier Reaffirms Vermont's Beauty

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A self-induced challenge to climb then ski down all 110 of Vermont's major mountains led Spencer Crispe to places he describes as some of "the best-kept secrets" — and where he was able to do some of most enjoyable skiing of his life.

"Vermont is just so beautiful," he said. "It just reaffirmed, in my opinion, how beautiful the state is and how suited a lot of the terrain is for backcountry skiing and whatnot."

Crispe, a local attorney and West Brattleboro resident who is a ninth-generation Vermonter, finished the challenge Jan. 5 at Middle Jay after four winters of skiing. He had already skied a bunch of the mountains and climbed all 110 during non-winter months.

"I was like, maybe I could climb them in winter, which would be a cool challenge, and ski

 Read the full story at BrattleboroReformer.com

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Eat Your Way to Fitness at these Cross Country Ski and Snowshoe Food Events

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Want a guilt-free way to indulge yourself with food while exercising? Cross country (XC) skiing and snowshoeing are some of the best forms of aerobic exercise, but if you go on a "Gourmet Ski Tour" on your XC skis or snowshoes, you may very well eat your way to fitness at a number of trailside food stops. What a grand time so go ahead, eat, ski, and be merry - appetizers, wine, champagne, fondue, entrees, desserts, and more.

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Take Amtrak From Midwest To Whitefish For A Great Ski Trip

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Heartland snowsports enthusiasts can climb aboard Amtrak’s Empire Builder for an easy, scenic ride to Whitefish Mountain Resort. There are several places you can board the train. It leaves Chicago’s Union Station with stops in Milwaukee, the Twin Cities, and several other boarding locations across North Dakota and eastern Montana before arriving at Whitefish. When you book early, at least 7-14 days in advance, you can save 20-percent on your fare.

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