Yep, you read that right. Skiing isn’t just for wintertime or spring break.
There’s no such thing as a one-size-fits-all summer vacation: some people are pining to visit the ocean, others are rooting for a trip to see a national park, and still, a third group is hoping for an adrenaline-filled amusement park.
Our bet is that a ski vacation isn’t even on your summer wishlist, but we think it should be. We’ve pulled together four of our favorite ski locations that stay open throughout the warmer months. So next time you find yourself complaining about the miserable summer heat, consider unpacking your ski gear a few months early and hitting these snowy slopes.
1. Timberline Ski Area
Just a short drive from Portland, Oregon, Mt. Hood is host to the only year-round skiing in the U.S. at the Timberline Ski Area. Here, you can find more than 40 ski trails designed for a variety of skill levels. During the warmer months, only the trails at the highest point of the mountain called Palmer Express are open to skiers.
Where to Stay:
- Timberline Lodge — The historic Timberline Lodge was built by public workers in 1937 and is a masterpiece of a ski lodge. When you visit the Timberline Resort, choose among dining options like the Ram’s Head Bar and Restaurant, the Blue Ox Bar, Phlox Point Cabin, or the Cascade Dining Room, which serves farm-to-table buffet options during breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Also, enjoy meeting the famed St. Bernard mascots, who are the living embodiment of a tradition started in 1937 when Franklin D. Roosevelt dedicated the lodge. The first St. Bernards at Timberline were named Hansel and Gretel, but since the 1960s, the snow-loving dogs have carried the names Heidi and Bruno.
- Best Western Mt. Hood Inn — This Best Western is just minutes away from the Timberline Ski Area and located in the Government Camp village. If your family or group of friends is looking for off-resort accommodations, this is the choice for you. Hotel amenities include a free breakfast to fuel you up and a hot tub to soak away any soreness from your day’s exertions.
2. Beartooth Basin Summer Ski Area
Open from May 30 to July 7, on the border of Wyoming and Montana, the Beartooth Basin Summer Ski Area is a special place. Unlike most North American ski areas, this one is only open during the summer. In fact, the only road that leads there is closed all winter. Traveling the road is precarious, even during the summer, due to snowstorms and an avalanche risk.
Beartooth is an expert skier’s haven. Some of the ski runs boast an incline angle of more than 50 degrees, beating most black diamond expert options by around 20 degrees of incline. The ski area is owned by a partnership of four individuals who invested because of their passion for skiing.
Where to Stay:
- Quality Inn of Red Lodge, Montana — You’ll find this cozy Quality Inn located less than 30 miles from the Beartooth Basin in Red Lodge, Montana. Outdoor enthusiasts burrow into the comfort of this hotel after visiting the slopes, the Yellowstone Wildlife Sanctuary, or Yellowstone National Park. When you book your stay it includes free breakfast, freshly baked cookies, an indoor heated pool and hot tub, free Wi-Fi, and guest laundry facilities.
3. Mammoth Mountain
Often you’ll find late spring and early summer skiing available on Mammoth Mountain in Mammoth Lakes, California. You can book ski rentals and private lessons through the main office and shop for off-season ticket packages that will make your friends and family jealous.
Where to Stay:
- Best Western Plus High Sierra Hotel — Minutes away from the Mammoth slopes you’ll find the Best Western Plus High Sierra Hotel. Centrally located, this newly renovated hotel perches amid the local shops and restaurants making everything easily accessible and giving you picturesque views of the Sierra Nevada. Fuel up on complimentary breakfast before hitting the ski trails and wind down with your choice of an evening spent at the indoor pool, relaxing in the hot tub, or surrounded by competition in the game room.
- The Westin Monache Resort — Discover the Westin Monache Resort just 10 minutes from the ski area. The hotel is surrounded by mountains, so you’re bound to have a stellar view. When you’re beat from skiing, relax at the Body Works Mountain Spa or in the outdoor pool (which stays heated for the winter months.) This pet-friendly hotel features a fitness center, resort restaurant, free Wi-Fi, and shuttle and valet services. Additionally, if you’re looking to host a business meeting or a retreat, look no further. You can choose from among the 2,000 square feet of flexible indoor and outdoor meeting spaces.
4. Whistler Blackcomb
If you’re interested in a Canadian summer skiing vacation, visit the Whistler Blackcomb ski area in British Colombia. It’s a 10-minute drive from Whistler Olympic Plaza to Whistler Village, where you’ll find all sorts of shopping and hotel accommodations.
Skiing on the Horstman Glacier is reserved to one public lane, as the rest are used for summer ski camps. The glacier skiing and snowboarding are for advanced to expert skiers and riders, and anyone who goes must be able to ride the T-Bars.
Where to Stay:
- Hilton Whistler Resort & Spa — The Hilton Whistler Resort & Spa was named by Condé Nast as the 10th top resort hotel in Canada and is nestled into the community at the heart of Whistler Village. Mere steps away from the Whistler and Blackcomb Mountain chair lifts, this pet-friendly hotel is also home to the Taman Sari Royal Heritage Spa. Grab dinner or light snacks at the Cinnamon Bear Grille restaurant or step into the business center and knock out your work to-do list.
- The Westin Resort & Spa, Whistler — Live like an Olympian—specifically one who competed in the downhill events during the 2010 Winter Olympics—and feel like a winner when you book rooms at the Westin Resort & Spa, Whistler. There are 400 suites designed to make you feel at home with warming fireplaces and spacious soaker tubs. Round out your experience by eating at the Grill and Vine or scheduling a visit to the Avello Spa & Health Club.
Let Us Help You Book Your Next Ski Trip
At Roomkey, our goal is to help you find the right hotel and to do it in a straightforward and simple way. We know searching for rooms can be frustrating with all the online hotel search options, but we’ll make it easy and help you book directly with the hotel, so you wind up with the best possible vacation experience.
Stop endlessly searching and let us help you find the right rooms at the right price for your summer ski vacation.