Where to Ski in May in the USA?
This year has been record-breaking in terms of precipitation & snow-pack, particularly in places that were formerly in pretty dire droughts ~ like essentially the whole state of California. But thanks to all that snow, the chances for some late-season skiing & snowboarding are looking mighty fine this year. While there’s one resort in Vermont that stays open thru May: really, the bulk of great ski resorts that are open late into spring are found in the West. Here, we’ll find out “Where to Ski in May in the USA” ~ & this year, you can actually ski through JULY in a few spots!
Read on to find out who’s got the longest ski seasons in 2023…
Overview of Resorts Open in Late-Spring
There are five resorts in the western United States that offer extended spring-skiing. And due to record snow, some of these resorts are staying open even later than usual…with Mammoth boasting the longest season, open until July 30th!!
- Arapahoe Basin, in Colorado = STAYING OPEN UNTIL JUNE 1ST, 2023: Of all the Colorado ski resorts, A-Basin (as it’s called by locals) has the longest season. It’s also one of the closest resorts to Denver, which makes for a pretty easy drive ~ but this is really a spot for expert skiers & boarders, as only 7% of its runs are beginner. A-Basin is known for its steeps!! (Which is why it was never my favorite Colorado mountain ~ I always preferred Vail.)
- **Mammoth Ski Resort, in California = OPEN UNTIL JULY 30TH, 2023!!! I love Mammoth: this is a great mountain for everyone. And this year, it’s open SO LATE ~ if you haven’t skied yet this year, book your tickets & get the kids out on the mountain. I’ve skied with my niece & nephew here, who were still learning…& it was great for them. Those looking for a challenge can head up to the top for some great bowls & steeper terrain. The drive from LA takes about five hours, or fly into Bishop (BIH) or tiny Mammoth-Yosemite Airport (MMH).
- **Mount Bachelor, in Oregon = OPEN UNTIL MAY 28TH, 2023: This is my stomping grounds…I live about 45 minutes from Bachelor, & I can tell you: spring skiing here is phenomenal. I actually prefer it, as Bachelor can be a very windy mountain, & the winds are always worse in winter. You can fly into Redmond Airport (RDM) pretty easily from most cities on the West Coast (direct flights to Denver, Seattle, Portland, Phoenix, SFO, & Los Angeles), then it’s an easy 45-minute drive to the mountain. As for where to stay: Tetherow Resort & Sunriver get you as close to Bachelor as possible (there are NO ski-in/ski-out hotels at Bachelor).
- Snowbird Ski Resort, in Utah = OPEN UNTIL MAY 14TH, 2023: For late-season powder in Utah: head to Snowbird. Similar to A-Basin ~ Snowbird is really best for advanced skiers & boarders. There’s very little easy terrain here. If you’re coming with kids who need to learn how to ski: this may not be the best place to do it. Fly into Salt Lake City (SLC), & it’s a pretty easy drive up the mountain to Snowbird. Check out the two hotels that get you closest to the mountain here.
- **Squaw Valley/Palisades Tahoe, in California = OPEN UNTIL JULY 4TH, 2023: California’s winning this year in terms of late-season snow: similar to Mammoth, Squaw Valley’s going to have one of the longest seasons of the year, open until July 4th. This is a great mountain for all levels (we skied here as kids & had a blast), & you’ve got some nice lux resorts at the base such as Everline Resort & Spa. Reno’s the closest major airport (RNO) at about an hour’s drive from Squaw Valley ~ which is now called Palisades Tahoe.
Squaw Valley/Palisades Tahoe
California Ski Resorts Open Late-Season
Mammoth Mountain & Squaw Valley/Palisades Tahoe
If you’re looking to ski late-season in California, your two best bets in terms of resorts open longest are Mammoth Mountain ~ which has the longest season of anyone this year (open until July 30th), & Squaw Valley/Palisades Tahoe, which is open until July 4th. Both mountains are some of my overall favorites: they work for beginners, intermediates, AND those looking for more extreme terrain. Truly two of California’s best ski resorts.
The Westin Monache ($379+/night) is a great ski-in/ski-out resort at Mammoth ~ check rates there, or read about ALL ski-in/ski-out resorts in Mammoth.
Check rates at the luxurious Resort at Squaw Creek, which puts you right next to the lifts. And if you do end up skiing Squaw, check out the best apres-spots in town…
Oregon Ski Resorts Open Late-Season
Mount Bachelor (by Bend, Oregon)
Of course I’m biased because I live here: but Mt. Bachelor is a great place to spring ski. They’re always open until the end of May, thru Memorial Day weekend ~ & this is really a great mountain for moderate/intermediate skiers. Yes, there’s more challenging terrain here…but Bachelor excels in that true intermediate range. And when you’re on top of the mountain, the views you get of nearby Broken Top & the Three Sisters mountains are truly spectacular.
The downside of Bachelor: you can’t stay right at the mountain (protected forest land prevents any hotels from being built here). You’ve got to drive about 20 minutes down to either Tetherow, Seventh Mountain, or Sunriver Resort. But the good thing about that is, you’re closer to all the action in Bend…which is an amazing mountain town (filled with good food & drink).
Check out my guide to the perfect 3-day weekend in Bend, Oregon…
This is such a helpful post for my family, as we’re trying to plan a late spring ski trip this year. We have young boys who are learning how to ski, which of these mountains do you think would be best for beginners? We’re from Los Angeles. Thanks, Lilly
Hi Lilly, thanks for your question! I think Mammoth or Squaw are your best bets for kids learning to ski, as both mountains offer Ski Schools & have a good range of beginner/intermediate slopes. Bachelor is also a great mountain for learning, especially in late spring ~ it just may be harder to reach for you guys. Snowbird is definitely a no: that’s very challenging terrain; same goes for A-Basin in Colorado. Hope that helps! xoxo Noelle
I can’t believe Mammoth and Squaw are boh open so late this year! Amazing. Our family missed out on our usual Chrsitmas ski trip so we’re looking to squeeze something in this May. Article super helpful!!
Great, Shanna! So glad this was able to help you plan a late-season ski trip : ) xoxo
We’re looking to get the kids some spring skiing this year & this article was super helpful! Looks like we’re heading to Mammoth in May!
That’s awesome, Norah ~ enjoy! xoxo