The best places in the world to ski this winter

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In partnership with Ikon Pass

Powder junkies know all the angles when it comes to hitting the slopes, including all the deals to be found. A benchmark for ski obsessives is Ikon Pass. This massive pass allows skiers and boarders access to more than 50 iconic destinations worldwide with nearly 400,000 acres of skiable terrain. Each Ikon Pass option offers a different level of access, plus food, beverage, and retail discounts, with limited or no blackout dates: Ikon Session Pass gives you 2-4 days of use in 37 destinations. The Ikon Base Pass offers unlimited access to 13 destinations and 5 days in 30 other mountains each. Finally, the Ikon Pass offers unlimited skiing or horseback riding in 15 destinations and 7 days in 31 other mountains each.

What’s less known outside of enthusiasts is that Ikon Pass has just as much to offer everyone else – families, thrill-seeking globetrotters or those who prefer après-ski to skiing. To help you plan the perfect snowy getaway for you and your crew, we’re highlighting a few of our favorite Ikon Pass destinations that are suitable for riders of all types. With over 50 global destinations, each unique in their own way, it was hard to narrow down to a dozen, but there you go.

PARENT POWDER

Ikon Pass makes it easy to transmit energy from one generation to the next, with destinations like these offering family-friendly experiences and amenities on and off the mountain.

Ikon Pass

Known locally as California’s Family Mountain, you’ll be charmed by the laid-back vibe and pleasantly surprised by the 1,500 acres of uncrowded terrain. Kid-favorite dining options abound, as do breathtaking views from the June Lake Chalet.

3819 CA-158, June Lake, CA 93529 (map)

With 60 trails and five terrain parks, Snowshoe offers the most open terrain in the Southeast, as well as famous night skiing for memorable after-bedtime fun. Shops, restaurants and accommodations are at the top of the mountain rather than at the base, so kids can tell their friends they vacationed in the Upside Down Mountain. Dr. Seuss didn’t even think about it.

10 Snowshoe Drive, Snowshoe, WV 26209 (map)

As a parent and therefore history buff, you are bound to take your children on a pilgrimage to what is colloquially known as the birthplace of snowboarding. To sweeten the deal, take the crew on a snowshoe tour of the mountain’s full moon at night, complete with hot chocolate by the fire.

5 Village Lodge Rd, Stratton Mountain, Vermont 05155 (map)

SENSATION SEEKER

Ready to stare vertical drops in the face and say to the mountain: “Not today?” Seek joy in the extremes of steep slopes, depths and snow dumps in these destinations known for their breathtaking adventures.

Ikon Pass

Some of the world’s best skiers and riders flock here for bottomless powder, the longest continuous vertical descent in the United States (4,139 exhilarating feet) and the legendary Corbet’s Couloir. The race is so difficult and intimidating that people race the aerial tram just to watch others arrive.

3395 Cody Ln, Teton Village, WY 83025 (map)

The numbers here are jaw-dropping: 5,800 skiable acres, 4,350 feet of vertical drop, 400 inches of average snowfall, and even a 6-mile-long run highlight the largest ski mountain in the country. The Big Couloir track is so extreme that you literally aren’t allowed to ride alone. That’s right, you’ll need to alert Ski Patrol and bring a partner (and your avalanche gear) before tackling the 50-degree terrain and 1,400-foot drop. As they say, go to Big Sky or go home.

150 Big Sky Resort Rd, Big Sky, Montana 59716 (map)

Ski or ride the longest vertical drop in North America, an amazing and adrenaline-pumping 5,620 feet of terrain accessible by elevator. With legendary powder and this record drop, you’ll have the energy of big skiing all the way down. Put a serious dent in your list of things to do in Western Canada.

2950 Camozzi Road, Revelstoke, BC V0E 2S1, Canada (map)

GLOBETROTTER

Ikon Pass is also there for globetrotters. Follow lines around the planet, past the best of North America to the European Alps, Japan and the Southern Hemisphere. Seeing the world is different when you see it from the top of a mountain.

Ikon Pass

The Matterhorn. Need we say more? This legendary mountain is one of the most photographed and iconic peaks on the planet. But Zermatt is more than 16-mile runs and 7,425 feet of green. It’s a snow and ice paradise where you can ride a gondola with heated leather seats or explore the ice tunnels and sculptures of Glacier Palace.

Wildi 9, 3928 Randa, Switzerland, 3928 Randa, Switzerland (map)

Japan may not be the top destination on every skier’s bucket list, but it should be. With some of the deepest and most abundant powders on the planet, natural hot springs, and Michelin-starred fresh ramen, curry, and sushi, we’re pretty confident you’ll be here for it. Additionally, Ikon Pass has just added a new destination in Japan for 2023, Lotte Aire. So you can extend your trip to Japan and ski in two powder-filled resorts.

Abuta District, Hokkaido Japan (map)

This valley’s 100-year history as a mountaineering destination has earned it the nickname “the highest museum in the world”. Among the “exhibits” are Mont Blanc, the highest peak in Western Europe, and La Vallée Blanche, the longest off-piste track in the world – 12 miles long with a descent of 8,858 feet. You can also take a cable car to ‘the roof of Europe’ or spend your French holiday like the French: devouring fresh bread, gourmet cheeses and some of the best wine you’ll ever taste. This is a new pass for the 2022-2023 season.

29 Rte Henriette d’Angeville, 74400 Chamonix-Mont-Blanc, France (map)

AFTER LOVERS

If the closest to the mountain you want to get to is looking at it from your cozy cabin window, hey, we’re not judging. There’s so much more to love about ski culture beyond skiing itself – perhaps we could interest you in chunky sweaters, fireside hangers, fine dining and après-ski cocktails ? I thought so.

Ikon Pass

Four-season access, runs so good they’re named after world champions, and perhaps the best ski-in ski-out village in North America? Check, check and check, but let’s be honest, you’re here to eat. Sample over 30 restaurants and don’t leave without tasting the quintessential Canadian maple taffy on snow: hot maple syrup poured over literal snow, then rolled on a popsicle stick.

1000 Chem. des Voyageurs, Mont-Tremblant, QC J8E 1T1, Canada (map)

Known as The Legend, this Rocky Mountain destination has been around for nearly 70 years. Which is cool and all, but let’s talk about A-Basin’s true signature: the award-winning Bacon Bloody Mary at 6th Alley Bar. Grab a stool and sip while watching the frontside run, then grab your gear and drop down. Or, you know, don’t.

28194 US-6, Dillon, CO 80435 (map)

Skiing in Austria is about as authentic as it gets to the roots of the sport. It’s where the world comes to ski and party at the world-class Hahnenkamm downhill race. But you can focus just on the festive part, with 60 mountain huts and restaurants offering traditional Austrian dishes, reinvented alpine gastronomy and everything in between.

Hahnenkammstrasse 1a, 6370 Kitzbuhel, Austria (map)

These are just a few of the many mountains that Ikon Pass puts within your reach. And with options starting at just $269, adult, there’s a pass for the way you ride. Find out more about ikonpass.com.

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