Best Places to Ski and Snowboard in the Pacific Northwest

The Pacific Northwest is widely regarded as one of the most beautiful places in the country. In almost every direction you look, towering, snow-capped mountains loom in the background. This makes it one of the best areas to zoom down the mountain, so grab your skis or snowboard and head to one of these top destinations!

1. Mt. Hood, Oregon


best places to ski Pacific Northwest Flickr photo courtesy Kage Greenland


Mt. Hood is located an hour and a half southwest of Portland, and it's so massive there are two major ski areas to choose from. Timberline is located on the west side of the mountain, and is one of the few ski areas in all of North America that you can visit year round. While you're there, visit Timberline Lodge for lunch, which is the hotel where the exterior of the famous movie The Shining was filmed. Mt. Hood Meadows is on the east side of the mountain, which some skiers prefer due to more runs being available with several advanced trails.

2. Mt. Baker, Washington


Located close to the Canadian border, Mt. Baker brings in skiers and snowboarders from all around the state. The mountain is known for its numerous backcountry routes and challenging runs. Several events attract people from all around the country, including the Legendary Banked Slalom, which has brought some of the biggest names in snowboarding to the area to compete for the top prize.

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3. Alyeska Resort, Alaska


With an annual snowfall of over 700 inches, there's sure to be plenty of snow no matter what time in the winter you visit. The locals don't even consider it a "powder day" unless there's over a foot of snow on the ground. Experienced snowboarders love the steep slopes of the mountain to challenge themselves on. Alyeska Resort is also known for their night skiing, so you can be on the mountain the entire day and night.

4. Crystal Mountain, Washington


Best Places to Ski Pacific Northwest Flickr photo courtesy Matt-Zimmerman


While it's several hours south of Seattle, the journey is more than worth it. There's 2,600 acres to spread out and practice your skills on the slopes. The hotels located across the parking lot are famous for their homey feel, so make a weekend out of visiting Crystal Mountain if possible. Plus there's nothing more convenient than waking up and walking right up to the ski lift.

5. Mt. Bachelor, Oregon


One of the largest ski resorts in all of the Pacific Northwest, Mt. Bachelor has a vertical drop of over 3,300 feet and boasts over 3,600 acres. Everything from beginner routes to double-diamond routes can be found on their 71 different runs. They have one of the fastest lift systems around so you can maximize your time on the hill.

6. Whistler/Blackcomb, British Columbia


best places to ski Pacific Northwest Flickr photo courtesy Cristiano Betta


Head north to Canada to have your choice of not one, but two mountains. The Peak 2 Peak Gondola connects Whistler and Blackcomb, so it's easy to visit both in one day. It's also the largest ski resort in all of North America, so you'll never feel like you're being crowded on your runs. There are four restaurants complete with lounges on the mountains, plus dozens at the base of Whistler to refuel at lunch.

7. Stevens Pass, Washington


Stevens Pass is one of the most popular places to ski in Washington due to its location in the middle of the state. Skiers can enjoy both the front and backsides of the mountain with everything from beginner to advanced runs. Their ski school is a great way for children and adults alike to improve their skills in skiing or snowboarding.

Team Sierra blogger
Marissa Pedersen
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Marissa Pedersen
As a member of #TeamSierra, Marissa Pedersen receives promotional consideration from Sierra Trading Post. Marissa is an outdoor enthusiast from Seattle with a passion for traveling. When she isn't on an adventure in a new place, you can find her exploring the beautiful Pacific Northwest.
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