America’s oldest ski resort—it’s in its 77th season—Sun Valley still manages to be a bit of a well-kept secret among locals. That means smaller crowds than big-name resorts and a pristine slope with more than 2,000 acres and a 3,400-foot drop at the edge of the Sawtooth National Forest. Plus, Sun Valley has some of the best resort Nordic trails in the country. The 220 inches of average snowfall is a tad scant, but friendly staff and superb on-mountain dining top most other resorts. Take the 56-car Roundhouse Gondola up to the fancy Roundhouse Restaurant on Bald Mountain’s summit for a Northwest lamb burger and long alpine views.
DON’T MISS: Sun Valley hosts the Norwegian Olympic team for their annual Nordic Festival, a weeklong event filled with nordic skiing, demonstrations, seminars, and the Boulder Mountain Tour Race.
GETTING THERE: Alaska Air offers daily direct flights to Sun Valley from Los Angeles and Seattle, and SkyWest flies direct from Salt Lake City. (sunvalley.com)