Where to ski in New Hampshire
Hey there! After a fantastic long weekend on the slopes, today’s post is about where to ski in New Hampshire.
Our family loves a day of skiing with après ski either on mountain or maybe at home – with our favorite buffalo dip appetizer.
I grew up skiing in New Hampshire and Vermont. While I have skied all over the U.S., New Hampshire has a charm of its own. No nonsense, not too fashion conscious and full of down-to-earth folks who love a good brisk day on the slopes (with plenty of après ski afterwards). And, if you have an Epic pass, you won’t want to miss the three resorts that take it.
Where to ski in New Hampshire for Epic Pass Holders
This past weekend, Mr. SB and I decided to explore New Hampshire resorts. We focused specifically on those that took the Epic pass – Wildcat, Attitash and Sunapee. We started off with Wildcat mountain.
Wildcat Mountain – Know before you go
Wildcat is the furthest away (of the three) from southern New Hampshire and the Boston area (where many skiers make day trips). You wind your way through North Conway, NH which has a very extensive outlet shopping area and many quaint restaurants and shops. The drive up from our place near Winnipesaukee was beautiful. We drove along a pristine river and some darling small towns.
Wildcat is known for its stunning views of Mt. Washington. Mt Washington is the highest peak in the East (East of the Mississippi) at over 6,000 feet. While half the size of some of the Rocky Mountains, it is impressive. The week before it also held the world’s attention as temperatures dipped to 100 below zero degrees.
I recommend checking the weather carefully and in particular the wind conditions at Wildcat which I will get into next. As you can see, I prepared well by wearing all the layers and being sure to cover my face!
What it was like to ski Wildcat
Thankfully Saturday was a balmy 32 degrees going up to 40. Not surprisingly, there was some wind. Wildcat, being so close to Mt. Washington, can be very windy. Two of the lifts were closed when we arrived. Unfortunately, the Express to the top was one of those lifts. We took the triple up halfway and while the views were beautiful, we did not have the complete Wildcat experience until the Express lift to the summit opened.
Wildcat has some of the longest runs from the top in the state. We were not disappointed. In addition to a beautiful view, the skiing was superb and with blue skies and excellent snow we had a great day. Be sure to snap a photo in front of Mount Washington with the sign telling you the altitude (see my main photo for the view).
We love après ski as much as we love to ski. Wildcat’s lodge, while basic looking on the outside, had a charming pub. Food prices in the cafeteria were also very reasonably priced. Epic pass holders get 20% off!). All in all, Wildcat is a hidden gem that I wished I had not waited this long to try!
Attitash: Know before you go
Next up on our Epic pass New Hampshire tour, was a visit to Attitash Mountain. We skied Attitash a few years ago with the girls on a cold and icy day. Frankly, I was not too happy with the experience. While you should always check the weather before skiing, I would say it is particularly important for Attitash.
What it was like to ski Attitash
Attitash was amazing this past Sunday. Skiing Super Bowl Sunday will now be a tradition chez SB! We felt like it was our own mountain for the day. The skies were blue, the snow was great, and temperatures were like spring skiing. Attitash has 68 trails and 8 lifts. Almost every trail was open.
Trails wind past some lovely ski chalets. I loved the wooded feel of many of the runs.
The lodge has entertainment almost every Saturday with live music. There was a cute pub. We ate in the cafeteria which offered typical ski food. Mr. SB enjoyed a bratwurst while I sampled the chili. Both were tasty and while a bit overpriced – in line with typical ski lodge pricing and quality.
After skiing we decided to stop in at the outlets in North Conway. There are numerous brand name outlets including: LL Bean, J Crew, Talbots, Loft and more. I picked up a cute puffer vest at Talbots for $30 (retails $150 and even on sale is about $100) while Mr. SB scored some $10 J Crew shirts. Definitely worth a trip!
Sunapee: Know before you go
Mr SB and I took the day off Monday to ski Sunapee. Sunapee is the closest of the three resorts to Boston so it can be crowded on the weekends with day skiers. I would avoid long weekends in particular as well as school vacations for both Massachusetts and New Hampshire.
Mount Sunapee looks over Lake Sunapee which is a beautiful lake surrounded by summer homes.
What it is like to ski Mount Sunapee
Skiing Sunapee was highly enjoyable. The ski resort boasts 66 runs. Of the three resorts, we found the skiing to be the easiest. The views were gorgeous as you see the lake and five other ski resorts in the distance. As it was a Monday, we skied ten runs in two hours!
After skiing we hit the pub. The lodge where it is housed, was a bit on the older side – typical seventies ski lodge look. Of note, you will not get the Epic pass discount in the pub. The chili was tasty. Mr. SB had a turkey avocado wrap which he said was delicious.
Where else to ski in New Hampshire?
While this mini get-away focused on the Epic resorts, we have also skied Waterville Valley and Gunstock. I grew up skiing Waterville. It is a favorite. There is only one road in and out of Waterville Valley and it is stunning. Last I skied there, it still had the old double lifts that go all the way to the top. I remember skiing that terrain when I was about six years old!
Gunstock has gorgeous views of Lake Winnipesaukee. We also love their local pub for lunch. For non skiers there is a mountain coaster which our girls tried and said it was great fun. There is also an outdoor sports center where you can rent cross country skis. We tried that one day and loved it too. Lastly, fun fact, Gunstock also offers night skiing.
Where to ski in New Hampshire? Try one of these options or explore others. For a great day with some old New England charm thrown in, I highly recommend trying these resorts. Until next time – happy skiing!