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North Carolina is home to stunning, snow-capped mountains, lush green forests and tons of ski resorts where you can do everything from traditional skiing, through to ice skating and snow tubing. We’ve rounded up the five best North Carolina Ski Resorts to inspire your winter vacation. Happy skiing!
1. Wolf Ridge Ski Resort, Mars Hill
Wolf Ridge Ski Resort is arguably North Carolina’s most popular place to hit the slopes. The full-service resort area spans over 54 acres with slopes available for all abilities. It’s conveniently located just a thirty-minute drive from Asheville. The resort has a base elevation of 4,000 feet, with five lifts and twenty trails. It’s a great place for experts and beginners alike, with newbies having access to beginner runs and experts being able to tackle several trails that run over challenging terrain. Guest love the snow tubing options, where you can slide down the slopes in a rubber ring.
2. Cataloochee Ski Area, Maggie Valley
The Cataloochee Ski Area, located in North Carolina’s Smoky Mountains, is the oldest ski area in the state and has been welcoming happy skiers since the 1960s. Similar to Wolf Ridge, the resort is located just a short drive from Asheville, with many visiting the area for a day trip. It’s situated at a base elevation of 4,600 feet and receives around 50 inches of snow a year. There isn’t lodging onsite but you can find places to stay in the nearby Maggie Valley town. The ski area has fifteen trails and there’s the option to do night skiing, which runs from 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 pm.
3. Sugar Mountain Ski Resort, Sugar Mountain
Sugar Mountain Ski Resort is located just 11 miles from Boone and is the biggest ski hill in North Carolina. Many travel to the resort for the giant slalom race, which takes place annually in early March, in honor of the resort’s former director of operations, Dick Trundy. You can stay right next to the slopes at a variety of lodging options. The resort has eight lifts and 20 trails for visitors to enjoy across a whopping 120 acres of skiable terrain. It’s a great place for beginner skiers who can practice on Easy Street, a simple trail to learn the ropes. Elsewhere, there are some very fun and challenging trails for the experts.
4. Beech Mountain Resort, Beech Mountain
Beech Mountain Resort has the highest altitude of the ski areas in North Carolina and its low temperatures mean even more snow. If you’re visiting towards the end of the ski season, it’s a great option as trails are likely to be snowy. The resort has an incredible summit deck offering panoramic views of the surrounding mountains, as well as an on-site sky bar providing food and drink at the top of the mountain when you want to unwind. The resort’s Alpine Village offers up restaurant options, and ice skating. All of the lodgings are handled off-site, however, there are great places to stay on Beech Mountain. There’s additionally night skiing and tubing, as well as 17 different trails for all capabilities and two new chairlifts as of 2018 (8 lifts in total).
5. Sapphire Valley Ski Resort, Sapphire
Sapphire Valley Ski Resort is nestled into the Blue Ridge Mountains. It’s a great place for skiing, snowboarding, snow tubing and even zip lining. It’s a family-friendly resort and a great place for a vacation. For adults, night skiing is available. The resort has a recreation center and a community center with fun activities.