Believe it or not, the term ‘ski resort’ is actually misleading. Sort of. We mean, yes, they are tailor made for those that love to strap bits planks of whatever to their feet and enjoy their heart rates hit astronomical figures. But they aren’t exclusively for skiers or snow-lovers. No way. In fact, long after the snow has melted, the ice has disappeared and the season has come to a close, these mountain resorts ramp up their offerings for the non-skier types, so much so the mountains come alive in the summer months.
And to take some of the guesswork out of it for you, we’ve pulled together a list of the best hills to head for when summer has well and truly touched the earth.
This teeny-tiny mountain resort has a population of under 1000, yet it boasts the largest ski area in Eastern USA. Come summertime, though, and this place attracts people with its array of amazing activities. For the thrillseekers, there is over forty miles of terrain made for mountain biking, all of which starts with a gondola ride. For the golf-lovers, there is an 18-hole course set amongst the amazing mountain scenery. And for those that just want to laugh and smile and giggle and dance, there is an outdoor concert series called “Cooler In The Mountains” that sees musicians come from all over to play every Saturday.
For those that love all things snow, then the word Vail has them thinking of America’s third biggest ski resort. But by the time the summer comes around, the winter season has been forgotten; a bevy of amazing summertime-activities smoothly replacing it. Seriously. You need to book yourself a suite at the Marriott’s StreamSide Evergreen at Vail and join in the fun. Zip-lining canopy tours, bungee trampolines, tubing, suspended aerial bridges, alpine coasting through the forests, picnics at Gore Creek, hiking with llamas and a village that is packed with amazing restaurants and quaint shops. It’s big, it’s beautiful, it’s amazing.
Big Sky, Montana
It is famed for its winter offering, but this place is perfectly positioned for summer fun, which is partly thanks to the Yellowstone National park being on the doorstep. There are hair-raising adventures to be had at every turn, from paddling through the white-water waves of the Gallatin River or getting harnessed up for a rope course with magical views. Once again, it isn’t all about getting your thrill on because summers at Big Sky also consist of local food stalls, wine tasting and plenty of live music, especially at the Vine and Dine Festival.
The world is bigger than just America and to celebrate that fact we have to mention the Niseko, which is famed for its deep powder in winter. However, it is also getting a reputation for being one of the best places to go for a summer trip, especially as it is absolutely bursting with breathtaking scenery. To give you some idea of what’s on offer for your eyes, there is a dormant volcano, Mount Yotei, sunflower fields and emerald green forests that cover the hills like a silk blanket.