Exploring the Green Mountain State at Stowe near UVM.
300 inches of average snowfall. Denver has to travel just an hour up I-70 to get to
Loveland. Better still, both universities are within two hours — give or take some time,
depending on traffic and weather — of Breckenridge, Copper, Vail, Winter Park and
more. Both schools also enjoy the nation’s longest ski season most years. Loveland,
Copper, Keystone, and Breck sometimes open as early as late October so the best
racers on the planet can train between the first World Cup races at Soelden, Austria,
and North American World Cup stops in late November. Nearby Arapahoe Basin was
open for a whopping 245 days last year.
The Teams: These schools have 37 NCAA titles between ‘em and are categorically
the best programs in the history of the sport.
4. University of Utah Salt Lake City, Utah
The Terrain: For the Utes, Park City — home of the U.S. Ski Team, and the three
world-class ski areas of Park City Mountain Resort, The Canyons and Deer Valley — is
a pretty stellar option to have 35 minutes up the road. Add two of North America’s premiere powder resorts in Snowbird and Alta (each about 40 minutes from campus) and
things look even better. There are also backcountry options galore in the Wasatch and
Uinta Mountains. Need a change of scenery? Jackson Hole is just a five-hour drive.
The Team: Utah is another powerhouse in NCAA skiing, third on the all-time list of
titles with 10.
STOWE RESORT; SCOT T SPIKER; SNOWBIRD RESORT
Shredding Big Sky country not far
from Bozeman’s Montana State.
Snowblind at Snowbird
near University of Utah.
5. University of Washington Seattle, Washington
The Terrain: If you’re surprised to see UW so high up the list, get yourself to Washington’s
Cascade Range this winter. Really. About an hour east of UW are Alpental and Summit at
Snoqualmie (the homes of the Huskies’ ski team), which average 435 inches of snowfall
per year. You can also ski at night should your studies bog you down during the day. Ninety
minutes away, 450 inches of the white stuff blanket Stevens Pass every winter. To put that
in perspective, Vail averages 348 inches of snowfall per year. Meanwhile, Crystal Mountain,
Washington’s largest ski area with 2,600 acres of lift-serviced terrain, is also just 90 minutes away. It’s produced U.S. Ski Team athletes such as Libby Ludlow, Scott Macartney,
and Paul McDonald. Finally, Whistler Blackcomb — four and a half hours north — offers
discounted season tickets to UW students.