Killington Ski Resort, VT

Vermont Ski Resorts Ranked & Mapped

Vermont has 16 ski resorts, all very well spread out across the state. Killington and Sugarbush are the two most popular and best well-known ski resorts in Vermont. Both located in the middle of the state, they are only about an hour drive apart from each other.

Vermont Ski Season

The ski season in Vermont typically runs from early November until mid to late May. The ski season here is generally a month ahead of other ski resorts located in states below Vermont, like New York or Pennsylvania.

As crazy as it is to believe, Vermont receives more snow than any other US state, averaging 54 days and 89 inches (226 cm) of snow per year. This incredible number is the result of excellent snowfall at high elevations and an absence of low-lying or coastal areas. 

The massive snowfall numbers create amazing backcountry skiing opportunities. Lake Willoughby State Forest and Brandon Gap offer great skiing on backcountry trails. Since 2016, five projects have been established to create Nordic and backcountry trails on federal and state lands around Vermont.

Most Popular Vermont Ski Resorts

Vermont is home to several popular ski resorts.

Stowe Mountain Resort

Stowe Mountain

Stowe Mountain is more difficult than the average ski slope. 84% of its trails rated as either intermediate or expert-level, which doesn’t leave much for the beginners.

Mountain Stats

Summit:  4,395′
Vertical:  2,360′
Base:  2,035′

Terrain Stats

Trails:  116
Lifts:  12
Acres:  485

Trail Breakdown

Beginner:  16%
Intermediate:  55%
Expert:  29%

More Information…

Located in Stowe, Vermont, Stowe Mountain Resort is known for its variety of terrain, including trails for skiers and snowboarders of all abilities. The resort also offers a range of amenities, including a luxurious spa, an ice skating rink, and a variety of dining and shopping options.

Killington Resort

Killington

Killington is more difficult than the average ski slope. 83% of its trails rated as either intermediate or expert-level, which doesn’t leave much for the beginners.

Mountain Stats

Summit:  4,241′
Vertical:  3,076′
Base:  1,165′

Terrain Stats

Trails:  155
Lifts:  22
Acres:  1,526

Trail Breakdown

Beginner:  18%
Intermediate:  43%
Expert:  40%

More Information…

Located in the Green Mountains, Killington Resort is the largest ski resort in the eastern United States. The resort offers a variety of terrain, including trails for skiers and snowboarders of all abilities, as well as a range of amenities such as ski and snowboard rentals, dining options, and a variety of après ski activities.

Sugarbush Resort

Sugarbush

Sugarbush is more difficult than the average ski slope. 77% of its trails rated as either intermediate or expert-level, which doesn’t leave much for the beginners.

Mountain Stats

Summit:  4,083′
Vertical:  2,600′
Base:  1,483′

Terrain Stats

Trails:  111
Lifts:  16
Acres:  581

Trail Breakdown

Beginner:  23%
Intermediate:  42%
Expert:  35%

More Information…

Located in Warren, Vermont, Sugarbush Resort is known for its diverse terrain and variety of activities, including skiing, snowboarding, and cross-country skiing. The resort also offers a range of amenities, including a spa, dining options, and ski and snowboard rentals.

Jay Peak Resort

Jay Peak

Jay Peak can be beginner-friendly, but it depends on the ski trails you ride. While it ranks in the lower half of all North American ski areas in terms of overall difficulty, it still has 74% of its trails rated at or above intermediate ski level.

Mountain Stats

Summit:  3,968′
Vertical:  2,153′
Base:  1,815′

Terrain Stats

Trails:  81
Lifts:  9
Acres:  385

Trail Breakdown

Beginner:  26%
Intermediate:  50%
Expert:  24%

More Information…

Located in Jay, Vermont, Jay Peak Resort is known for its challenging terrain and natural snow. The resort offers a variety of activities, including skiing, snowboarding, and snowshoeing, as well as a range of amenities such as ski and snowboard rentals, dining options, and a spa.

Stratton Mountain Resort

Stratton Mountain

Stratton Mountain can be beginner-friendly, but it depends on the ski trails you ride. While it ranks in the lower half of all North American ski areas in terms of overall difficulty, it still has 59% of its trails rated at or above intermediate ski level.

Mountain Stats

Summit:  3,875′
Vertical:  2,003′
Base:  1,872′

Terrain Stats

Trails:  95
Lifts:  11
Acres:  625

Trail Breakdown

Beginner:  41%
Intermediate:  33%
Expert:  26%

More Information…

Located in Stratton Mountain, Vermont, Stratton Mountain Resort is known for its wide range of terrain and amenities, including ski and snowboard rentals, dining options, and a variety of après ski activities. The resort also offers a range of activities, including skiing, snowboarding, and cross-country skiing.

Nationwide Ski Lift Passes

IKON, INDY, and EPIC each have dozens of slopes in their system that will allow you to ski at any one of them if you hold it. Luckily, the majority Vermont’s ski resorts are associated with one or more of these nationwide passes. EPIC has three VT resorts, while IKON and INDY each have four.

ResortPassLocation
Bolton ValleyINDYRichmond, VT, 05477
Bromley MountainPeru, VT, 05152
Burke MountainEast Burke, VT, 05832
Cochran Ski AreaRichmond, VT, 05477
Jay PeakINDYJay, VT, 05859
KillingtonIKONKillington, VT, 05751
Mad River GlenMorrisville, VT, 05661
Magic MountainINDYLondonderry, VT, 05148
Middlebury Snow BowlHancock, VT, 05748
Mount SnowEPICSomerset, VT, 05356
Okemo MountainEPICLudlow, VT, 05149
Pico MountainIKONMendon, VT, 05701
Smuggler’s NotchJeffersonville, VT, 05464
Stowe MountainEPICWest Halifax, VT, 05358
Stratton MountainIKONWinhall, VT, 05155
SugarbushIKONWarren, VT, 05674
Suicide SixINDYSouth Pomfret, VT, 05067

Vermont Ski Resort Map

Explaining Our ‘Difficulty Score’

Parks & Trips created a proprietary Difficulty Score that is generated by looking at the number of easy-intermediate-expert slopes by acreage and the maximum vertical drop of the overall resort.

Our algorithm compares each resort’s metrics with all others in North America, then gives each a Difficulty Score, which we use to rank them accordingly. Resorts with a lower score are easier than those with a higher one. However, a high score does not mean that the resort does not have any easy slopes, or vice versa. This is just an overall score given to the resort based on all its metrics grouped together.

The Most Difficult Vermont Ski Resorts

Killington Ski Resort comes in first place as the most difficult ski resort in Vermont, but maybe not as convincingly as you’d expect. Burke Mountain and Sugarbush are hot on its trail, with similar piste levels among all three. What pushed Killington over the top is the fact that it has a much steeper vertical drop and many more acres than the second, and third place finishers.

RankResortGreen TrailsBlue TrailsBlack TrailsDifficulty ScoreTM
#1Killington18%43%40%67.7%
#2Sugarbush23%42%35%59.8%
#3Burke Mountain11%47%42%59.6%
#4Smuggler’s Notch17%53%30%59.5%
#5Mad River Glen20%35%45%58.7%

The Easiest Ski Resorts in Vermont

Cochran Ski Area easily wins as the easiest ski resort in Vermont. It has a very manageable 500 foot vertical drop, and it has a very small 30 acre skiable area. Suicide Six and Bolton Valley round out the top three, which also happen to have the second- and third-smallest vertical of any Vermont ski resort. All of these are very family friendly ski resorts, and offer trails for just about every skill level.

Rank ResortGreen TrailsBlue TrailsBlack TrailsDifficulty ScoreTM
#1Cochran Ski Area22%56%22%32%
#2Suicide Six30%40%30%36%
#3Middlebury Snow Bowl41%24%35%39%
#4Bolton Valley32%36%32%40%
#5Bromley Mountain35%34%31%42%

The Largest Ski Resorts in Vermont

Choosing the largest ski resorts is a bit of a tricky proposition. Do you look at just the summit elevation? How about the total acreage, most trails, or steepest vertical drop?

Well, we decided to combine all four of those metrics into one ranking to get the best idea, although we fully admit this is completely subjective. We’ve given you all the data in the following table to make your own decision.

As opposed to its small margin victory as the most difficult slope in Vermont, here Killington Ski Resort easy comes in first as the largest. Sporting a skiable area that is more than 1.5 times larger than its closest competitor, Killington also has the steepest vertical, and the most runs of any VT ski area.

Stowe Mountain Ski Resort has the highest base and summit elevations in Vermont. Smuggler’s Notch and Jay Peak ski resorts also come out as some of the largest ski resorts in Vermont.

Rank ResortSummit ElevationBase ElevationVertical DropAcresTrails
#1Killington4,241 ft1,165 ft3,076 ft1,526155
#2Smuggler’s Notch3,640 ft1,030 ft2,610 ft1,00078
#3Sugarbush4,083 ft1,483 ft2,600 ft581111
#4Stowe Mountain4,395 ft2,035 ft2,360 ft485116
#5Jay Peak3,968 ft1,815 ft2,153 ft38581
Author Image
Chris Cagle

I love traveling the United States. I hunt down fantastic places to visit in the summer and great slopes to ski down in the winter. The first national park I ever visited was the Smokies, but since then, I've been to dozens. However, my favorite by far has been Zion.