With so many ski areas in New England, choosing the "best" is simply a matter of perspective, and skiers seldom agree on what qualities make a ski area worthy of such a honor. These resorts were chosen for their appeal to those with different budget, terrain and ambiance preferences.
Sugarloaf is at least a four-hour drive from Boston and a much longer trip from New York. For many, that is part of its appeal. The lift lines at Sugarloaf are significantly shorter than at other resorts, and many of the staff members have worked there for more than 40 years. Sugarloaf, affectionately called "The Loaf" by its devotees, offers lift service to above-the-treeline skiing and a first-class ski school. Group ski lessons are free if you rent one of their on-mountain properties.
5092 Access Road
Carrabassett Valley, ME 04947
Bretton Woods (New Hampshire)
What it lacks in challenge, Bretton Woods makes up for in beauty. Located in the Mount Washington Valley, Bretton Woods is owned by the Mount Washington Resort. Built at the turn of the 20th Century, the resort's Victorian Hotel can be seen from many of the resort's trails. Stickneys Restaurant offers food and ambiance far superior to those of typical ski resort cafeterias. This is the perfect place to make a new skier fall in love with the sport.
Bretton Woods at the Mount Washington Resort
Route 302, Bretton Woods, New Hampshire 03575
Mad River Glen (Vermont)
Some skiers have no interest in high-speed lifts, upscale lodging and restaurants or quaint shops. Instead, they prefer challenging terrain that is free from snowboarders. These skiers will enjoy Mad River Glen, one of the last remaining snowboard-free ski areas. It opened in 1948 and is famous for the Single Chair lift, which, in an age of high-speed six-packs, is another rarity. Mad River Glen has a cooperative ownership, which goes along with its counter-culture environment.
Mad River Glen Cooperative
P.O. Box 1089
Waitsfield, VT 05673-1089
Article Written By Lisa Mercer
In 1999, Lisa Mercer’s fitness, travel and skiing expertise inspired a writing career. Her books include "Open Your Heart with Winter Fitness" and "101 Women's Fitness Tips." Her articles have appeared in "Aspen Magazine," "HerSports," "32 Degrees," "Pregnancy Magazine" and "Wired." Mercer has a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the City College of New York.