With the holiday season behind us and a long winter ahead, it’s finally time to accept the fact that the warm weather is far, far away and that we need to make the best of the season. It’s a tough fate to accept. My solace for the months ahead? The few ski weekends that I’ve scheduled with my friends and a couple of defrost trips to southern California.
But that’s the way we handle things at SuiteTrip HQ. We buckle down for the winter, and when the weekend vacation presents itself we drink the sweet, sweet nectar of freedom. For the staff here, the solution lies in indulgence.
If skiing is your poison, take that good long weekend out in Colorado and rock the resorts at Vail and Breckenridge. If it’s snowmobiling and cross-country skiing, fly into Reno and sneak up to Tahoe for some angelic snow play.
The point is, hubs in this country are well suited for winter outdoor adventures. Some are well placed relative to the most populated areas in the country. Some are easy to get to by air. And some, like our top pick below, are too beautiful to skip. Read on for the full list.Just a couple hours north of Vancouver, British Colombia is the winter playground known as Whistler. Home to a portion of the 2010 Winter Olympics, the resorts at Whistler and Blackcomb provide over 8,000 acres of snowy, mountainous terrain, with a great selection of skiing. If you need help convincing, check out the Embedded series that the resort produced last month – it’s worth watching for the music alone.
Our old friend Andrew Evans (aka, the Digital Nomad) had also been doing a great job in covering some of the Canadian ski resorts over the last few months. To live in his moment, check out his excellently curated Twitter feed at @wheresandrew.
Another obvious option for winter activity fanatics is Tahoe. This community on the border of California and Nevada isn’t particularly easy to get to, but it’s virtually a Garden of Eden for snow sports.
Visitinglaketahoe.com is your first stop for planning travel out to the region. If you want to ski, check out the resorts on the north rim of the lake. Bear in mind, though, that Tahoe is expensive. Transportation is costly, lodging is killer and the lift tickets are suffocating. But for the views and the snow, it’s totally worth it.
For a (slightly) less expensive version of the opulence that is Lake Tahoe, the activities centered around Denver, Colorado provide great opportunities for a winter vacation. Traveling two hours west of the metropolis and into the mountains brings all sorts of skiing opportunities, featuring the excellent resorts at Vail and Breckenridge. Denver itself is also a great place to hang out for the weekend, from the gorgeous facilities at Denver International to the microbrew tour through the downtown.
For those of you looking for a quick east coast weekend getaway, Burlington, Vermont is your best hub for winter shenanigans. Fly into this upstate airport and you’re two hours away from the beautiful French Canadian city of Montreal and the ski slopes in Killington. Burlington itself is quite the cute city, so if you want to snag one of those $150 flights from New York to simply hang out for the weekend, then you’re perfectly justified.
And that, dear readers, is the key behind surviving the cold American winters: Quick cheap weekends to temporary happiness. Tahoe and the big ski resorts will set you back, no doubt, but pair up with some friends, cook dinner in the suite and find discounted tickets to save a few bucks and the bill will be less painful. For the stock of happiness that you save up, you’ll thank yourself.