Best Ski Resorts in West Virginia

Powder enthusiasts planning their next ski vacation can’t go wrong with a ski trip to some of the marvelous ski resorts in West Virginia. Located in the vast range of the Appalachian Mountains, West Virginia is the home of some of the best ski resorts within the United States. 

West Virginia resorts have high elevation and an abundance of annual snowfall, which ensures that the ski resorts are in optimal condition throughout the whole season. Aside from that, the best ski resorts in West Virginia offer a variety of runs, premium lift infrastructure, and great facilities.

Visitors can expect to find a family-friendly and cozy atmosphere. Besides that, the best ski resorts in West Virginia have challenging terrain suitable for all ability levels. All ski resorts here have a rich ski culture, welcoming atmosphere, and breathtaking scenery. Most of the resorts are visited by powder hounds from Washington DC, Baltimore, and Charlotte metropolitan areas.

We’ve researched everything West Virginia has to offer to skiers and snowboarders, so you can start planning your next ski vacation after reading this article. You’ll learn what resorts in West Virginia provide in terms of accomodation, terrain, apres-ski, and dining.

Three of West Virginia’s resorts – Snowshoe, Canaan Valley, and Timberline have caught our attention, so let’s check what they have to offer.

Snowshoe

Located in the Allegheny Mountain Range, Snowshoe is one of the largest ski resorts in West Virginia. Snowshoe offers visitors a lot of facilities to explore, challenging terrain, and an amazing apres-ski scene. The average snowfall is 180 inches per year and the resort takes good care of grooming the snow. There’s a great terrain for beginners and intermediates as well as expert runs and dangerous steps for the daredevils. Due to the great atmosphere in the ski village, Snowshoe is very popular among powder junkies and tourists alike.

Pros

  • An abundance of snowfall
  • Great lift infrastructure
  • Amazing apres-ski scene
  • Lively and vibrant atmosphere

Pros

  • You can expect to spend some times in long lines
  • Pricey

Famous for: world-class ski resort, impressive apres-ski scene, and diverse terrain.

Town Area

Surrounded by the nicely designed condo-hotels, the small village of Snowshoe is a winter paradise for powder hounds. Snowshoe is considered one of the best ski resorts in the Mid-Atlantic region and this is partly due to the great atmosphere in the village where guests are provided with all required amenities and facilities. Guests will love the restaurants and the fine dining at offer. The resort regularly organises fun activities while also hosting wedding parties. Aside from skiing and boarding, guests can try hiking, fishing, biking, scenic horseback riding with guides, wilderness Segway tours, swimming, geocaching, and golfing on an 18-hole Championship golf course. When it comes to the apres-ski scene, Snowshoe is leading the pack.

Ski Terrain

With more than 180 inches of snow per year, Snowshoe runs are in prime condition throughout the whole season. 36% of all runs at Snowshoe are for beginners, so novices will have plenty of space to practise their craft. There are also many intermediate runs and the steepest and longest slopes in the entire U.S. south of New England. 

Experienced skiers should hit the north side and check some of the more advanced runs. There are some challenging steeps there that can test the craft of the veterans. Night skiers can enjoy the Silver Creek area which has 12 runs available for night skiing. If you like to take your little ones for some skiing classes, head to the Kid’s World and Silver Creek Ski and Snowboard School. The terrain at Snowshoe is ideal for beginners and intermediates with 60 ski trails in total. 

Crowd Density and Ski Lifts

Snowshoe is an amazing ski resort, but it can get crowded as it has a high population of visitors from Washington DC, Baltimore, and Charlotte metropolitan areas. You can expect long lines especially on weekends, however, you can always explore the village while waiting for the long lines to clear. And the weather here can be bone-chilling, so keep in mind to check the weather before booking accommodation.

The resort is served by 14 lifts including four-person chair lifts and magic carpets. The lift system is rapid and efficient and it does a good job at managing the large crowds. One-day ticket at Snowshoe costs $59. Keep in mind to book lift tickets on time as there are some very affordable packages available.

Accomodation

When it comes to lodging, visitors at Snowshoe have many options. There are many hotels with amazing mountain views where visitors can also enjoy a spa treatment. What’s more, lodging at Snowshoe is all about indulging yourself into luxury and coziness.  

You can choose between inns, hotels, or suites. The prices differ depending on the season and your luxury needs. There are many affordable options if you book your stay on time. There are also a number of all-inclusive ski packages and weekday packages that come at a remarkably affordable price, so make sure to research your options. 

Verdict

Snowshoe  is a great destination for anyone looking to experience diverse terrain, cozy village atmosphere, and some fun apres-ski activities. The ski resort is family-friendly and welcoming for anyone regardless of their level of experience. Snowshoe gives powder junkies a unique opportunity to practice their craft surrounded by the most beautiful views in West Virginia.

Canaan Valley

Canaan Valley is one the largest ski centres in West Virginia. This beautiful ski resort attracts thousands of visitors every season with its great powder, friendly atmosphere, and authentic charm. Canaan Valley is very popular among younger powder junkies because of its vibrant apres ski-scene. It offers a variety of trails and each run seems to be different, so if you’re up for adventure time on the slopes in the area of West Virginia, Canaan Valley should definitely be one of your first choices.

Pros

  • Amazing scenery
  • Great lift infrastructure
  • Amazing apres-ski scene
  • Good ski schools
  • Groomed trails
  • Family-friendly

Pros

  • Unpredictable weather conditions

Famous for: diverse terrain, fun atmosphere and breathtaking views.

Town Area

Canaan Valley is a year-round fun vacation destination.The ski resort has all the required amenities including bars, restaurants, retail shops, and more. The apres-ski scene is also exciting at Canaan Valley and you can always find some cheerful tourists drinking the local brew. Canaan Valley is all about coziness and sharing some good vibes with like-minded powder junkies. 

One of the main attractions is the Canaan Valley National Wildlife Refuge with more than 30 miles available for hiking, and fishing. Guests also love the Gandy Dinner Theater where fun shows can always be found on the repertoire.

Ski Terrain

With an average annual snowfall of over 140 inches, Canaan Valley has never had an issue with delivering great powder for its guests. Besides that, the ski season at the resort spans approximately 140 days. The ski terrain at Canaan Valley has a variety of trails suitable for all ability levels. There are 45 trails, 19% of which are considered perfect for beginners. 

This ski resort is located in the higher ranges of the Allegheny Mountains and promises long runs for those who prefer to stay for hours on the slopes. There are good kids and adult schools for those with no ski experience. Most of the runs at Canaan Valley are intermediate and advanced, but you can also find expert runs with 850 feet of vertical drop.

Crowd Density and Ski Lifts

The ski lift infrastructure at Canaan Valley is modern and efficient. There are 4 lifts with a capacity of carrying over 6000 people an hour, which is enough to prevent large crowds from forming. 

The resort is popular among young families, locals, and veterans, which is why it can get crowded over the weekends. However, the atmosphere is relaxed and the terrain is wide, so you won’t get stuck waiting in long lines.

Accomodation

Canaan Valley offers its guest’s cozy accommodation options and delicious dining that blends refinement with local flavors. The prices differ depending on the place you choose. For a small resort, Canaan Valley really delivers great quality when it comes to accommodation. Guests can choose from a number of condos, chalets, hotels, youth hostels, B&Bs, and inns. 

A popular choice is the Canaan Valley Resort which is visited by families year-round. The rooms are pet friendly, well-equipped, and guests can enjoy some delicious dining. Additional perks at this lodging include spa services, a fitness club, shopping, and free parking.

Verdict

Canaan Valley is often described as the best kept secret in West Virginia and now we can see why. It offers amazing skiing and snowboarding conditions, great dining, gorgeous scenery, and affordable prices. Additionally, Canaan Valley offers a number of fun activities including hiking, fishing, horse riding, and swimming. 

Timberline

The Timberline ski resort is widely popular among powder-junkies because of its long skiing tradition. The resort offers both skiers and snowboarders a peak elevation of astounding 4,300-feet. Prepare to be astounded by the size of the terrain, breathtaking scenery, diverse terrain, and the bewitching nature surrounding the resort. 

It’s located 6 miles away from Malibu Raceway and it has challenging terrain for all ability levels. For intermediates and anyone with years of experience looking to further extend their level of expertise, Timberline is the perfect place to do that. Another thing you might be interested in is that part of the ski resort served as a location in Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining.

Pros

  • Abundance of annual snowfall
  • Diverse terrain
  • Great apres-ski scene
  • Family-friendly
  • Challenging runs for experts

Pros

  • Foggy weather

Famous for: challenging terrain, peaceful atmosphere, great staff.

Town Area

Timberline is a popular resort year-round where guests enjoy hiking, night skiing, and great customer service. Aside from that, Timberline has the longest ski season in North America, so the summer ski scene is a big thing here. 

This village isn’t as big or populated as some of the other neighboring villages nearby, however, there are still many things to do while you’re here. You can enjoy some of the local cuisines in many of the different restaurants available, or you can shop at the ski shops offering snowboard and ski rentals. Party animals may be disappointed, but those looking for a relaxing atmosphere after a long day of skiing will certainly enjoy drinking a hot beverage in some of the cafeterias. 

Timberline also offers some fun activities such as tubing, snowmobiling, and cross-country skiing, after which you can relax in a spa for affordable prices.

Ski Terrain 

The terrain at Timberline is a paradise for any experienced skier who likes a dose of adrenaline and adventure. However, Timberline also has varied terrain suitable for all ability levels. The ski resort has 39 runs: 34% for beginners, 34% for intermediates, and 14% for advanced skiers. 

This ski resort receives an average annual snowfall of 200 inches. Timberline ski resort’s summit elevation of 4,300 feet delivers 100 feet of vertical for powder-junkies to enjoy. One thing that visitors find particularly enjoyable here is that the night skiing spreads across all kinds of terrain, which is not the case with the nearby ski resorts. This basically means that the twilight skiing at this resort includes advanced runs, which is a nice perk.

As we already mentioned, Timberline has the longest ski season in North America. Olympic athletes, beginners, and adrenaline junkies all gather at the resort between the months of June and September to enjoy some summer skiing. 

Crowd Density and Ski Lifts

Despite the fact that this resort is quite popular for its summer scene and night skiing, there aren’t huge crowds of powder junkies during the weekends. However, the terrain can get crowded during the holidays and the winter months.

The terrain is serviced by a total of 4 lifts including 2 triple chairs. The price of the ski lifts is very cheap compared to other ski resorts in West Virginia. The adult lift tickets cost around $66, whereas children aged 7-10 can ski all day for $39. The Timberline Season Pass costs $149 which is a great price.

Accomodation

Just a short drive away from the historic Timberline Lodge, the Government camp features 6 cozy MT Hood condos. The condos are beautifully decorated with fully-equipped kitchens, wireless internet, cable TV, and comfortable beds. Amenities in the Timberline Lodge also include outdoor hot tubs, fitness centre, and access to the outdoor restaurant.  

No matter where you decide to stay at Timberline, you’ll find reasonable prices.

Verdict

The Timberline ski resort will surely bring you lots of joy and relaxing time if you are somebody who is looking for a peaceful ski vacation. It’s the perfect place to practise your craft and enjoy an authentic resort atmosphere. Besides that, twilight skiing at Timberline can be an incredible experience.

You can check out more on our USA Ski Resorts page.

Article by:
Abby Ward
Senior Content Writer at Bluehouse
Last Updated October 2020