leaderboard

USA

USA

The Beautiful Slopes of Switzerland

USA is a big country with a lot of skiing – in the region of 600 resorts in close to 20 states. Choices include Idaho (Sun Valley), New Mexico (Taos), Wyoming (Jackson Hole), New York (Greek Peak), and Maine (Sugarloaf), and many more.

There are three mountain ranges to choose from – The Appalachians in the east, the Rockies in the west and the Sierra Madre mountains in the south west.

Best known to Brits are the Colorado resorts such as Vail, Aspen, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge and Copper Mountain. These are high altitude resorts – so high that it is not uncommon for some people to find difficulty in acclimatising. The time difference and ‘jet lag’ can also be an issue for those travelling from the UK for relatively short stays.

It’s obviously something of a trek to get to these places, but once there skiers can expect good snow conditions – usually of the light powdery variety – wide, well groomed, not overcrowded ski slopes, efficient lifts systems and friendly, efficient service. Some, especially those more used to popping into hot steamy mountain-top restaurants for lunch, might find it all a bit clinical.

Although we speak the same language, the US is still a foreign country with its own laws and customs. So visitors are well advised to check out such things as slope etiquette, liquor laws (no drinking alcohol under 21) and visa requirements (in addition to a valid passport everyone now needs prior travel authorisation, which can be obtained online) – and, as much as it might go against the grain for free riding, powder loving skiers and boarders, to make sure they are very well insured.

Fact File

Resorts There are too many to list – over 600 in close to 20 states, spanning three mountain ranges. These are: the Appalachians in the east, the Rockies in the west, and the Sierra Madre mountains in the south west.
Jackson Hole
Magic-mountain
Vail
Currency US Dollar
Language English
Time zone Five time zones apply across mainland USA  Of these Pacific time (which includes California and Washington) is UTC -8, Mountain Time (Colorado and other states) UTC -7, and Eastern Time (Maine and others) UTC -5. Daylight saving applies in summer.
International dialing code +1
Domain .com
Useful websites www.usembassy.org.uk,
www.usatourist.com,
www.visittheusa.co.uk,
https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov (for permission to travel)