Top 4 Best Ski Resorts in West Virginia

West Virginia has easy access to many mountain-based activities, skiing included. This area is home to the Appalachian Mountains, one of the bigger ranges in the eastern US. 

Skiing is one of my biggest passions, and I’ve been on the slopes for decades. I’ve had the chance to ski all over the slopes, and I’ve been to West Virginia a few times over the years. I know through first-hand experience and research what skiing here is like. 

This post will look at all of the best ski resorts in West Virginia. I’ll highlight what makes each resort a desirable location and point out other useful information to help you plan a ski trip here. 

Let’s dive in. 

1. Snowshoe Mountain

  • Resort Website
  • Opening Day: November 25 (Average) 
  • Closing Day: March 30 (Average)
  • Best Known For: Good snow for the east, highest peaks in West Virginia

Snowshoe Mountain is a favorite ski resort for locals and visitors alike. It’s a fun resort that sits on the highest peaks in West Virginia, giving you access to plenty of good skiing when the snow is falling during the winter months. 

The elevations at the summit of the highest point of the resort are nearly 5,000 feet, which helps ensure a good chance for fresh snow. And even if natural flakes aren’t falling from the sky, Snowshoe Mountain does an excellent job of providing extra coverage with artificial snow. 

Snowshoe Mountain is three resorts in one, so you have a lot of different terrain to explore. It mainly caters to beginner and intermediate skiers, with nearly three-quarters of the mountain being blue and green runs

If you like to freestyle ski, the resort has five terrain parks you can take advantage of. These parks have different features for various ability levels, so you’ll be sure to push your limits or learn something new if you want to go big. 

There are several lodges scattered around the mountain, and you won’t need to venture far away from the slopes to find a comfortable place to stay. Many of these offer ski-in/ski-out convenience, making for a great ski trip experience. 

Ski rentals and lessons are also readily available, and the beginner-friendly nature of the mountain shines with a range of different instructors that can help you improve your on-snow skills. And there are many food options to stay fueled for a long day on the slopes. 

There is a lot to like about Snowshoe Mountain, but it doesn’t have much advanced and expert terrain. If you are an experienced skier looking for a challenge, this isn’t the resort for you. 

2. Timberline Mountain

  • Resort Website
  • Opening Day: December 10 (Average) 
  • Closing Day: March 20 (Average)
  • Best Known For: Recent improvements and upgrades, weekend night skiing

Timberline Mountain is another one of the top ski resorts in West Virginia. This resort has new owners that recently dumped a ton of money into much-needed improvements, and now this is one of the most modern skiing destinations in the state. 

If you want to get as many runs in as possible without waiting in long lift lines, the new high-speed lifts here will have you covered. There is a quad and a six-pack that keeps skiers steadily flowing uphill so you can spend more time on the snow instead of in line. 

Timberline Mountain has just over a 1,000-foot vertical drop, giving you access to over 40 runs that work for many different skier ability levels. There isn’t a ton of expert terrain, but beginner and intermediate skiers will be more than satisfied. 

The resort also does night skiing on the weekends, so you can take advantage of the lifts staying open after dark and get as many runs in as you can handle. They also do a good job of keeping things groomed and supplementing natural snowfall with artificial. 

You can find group or individual lessons on the mountain to help you and your friends improve your skills and learn something new from a qualified instructor. There are also equipment rentals to get you hooked up with everything you need for a solid day on the slopes. 

There is a full cafeteria in the main lodge, offering all sorts of meals and snacks to keep you ready for action during a long day on the mountain. If you want to stay for a few days, you’ll need to make lodging arrangements in the nearby town of Davis.    

3. Canaan Valley 

  • Resort Website
  • Opening Day: December 15 (Average) 
  • Closing Day: March 20 (Average)
  • Best Known For: Locals mountain, more advanced terrain, inviting atmosphere

Canaan Valley isn’t the biggest ski resort in West Virginia, but it has some of the best terrain for more experienced skiers. That makes it a favorite spot for locals who love to ski or visitors who want the best skiing in the state.

There are almost 50 different ski runs here, with a good combination of beginner, intermediate, and advanced terrain. So even if you aren’t an expert, there is still plenty of room to explore and have a good time. 

You can set up a ski lesson right at the resort, and Canaan Valley has some excellent instructors to help you improve your skills and learn how to take advantage of the time you have on the mountain. 

Rentals are also available, but since it’s a smaller resort, you might want to call ahead of time and make a reservation, so they have everything you need. And there isn’t lodging right at the mountain, but you can stay at a resort that is only a few minutes away.  

4. Winterplace

  • Resort Website
  • Opening Day: December 15 (Average)
  • Closing Day: March 15 (Average)
  • Best Known For: Few crowds, great ski school, good terrain park

Winterplace is a less-known but still solid ski resort in the southern part of West Virginia. This location isn’t as easy to access as some other resorts in the state, so you can bet there won’t be much of a crowd. 

The resort has under 30 runs, but you can ride any of the ten lifts to explore all the terrain. There is a good mix of beginner and intermediate runs, and it’s a great place for beginners to learn the basics of skiing. 

Winterplace is well-known for having one of the best ski schools around, so I highly recommend taking a lesson here, even if you are an intermediate skier. There are also five restaurants, providing all sorts of food you can enjoy during your stay. 

It’s not a huge mountain, but Winterplace is still a lot of fun to visit. It also makes are great family ski trip if you want to bring everyone with you. 

Additional Tips for Skiing in West Virginia

West Virginia has higher elevation ski resorts than some other areas on the East Coast. If you are from sea level, you might want to take some time to get adjusted to the altitude to avoid feeling sick or getting dehydrated. 

Here are some high-altitude skiing tips to help you avoid any adverse effects.

Final Words

West Virginia is a fun state to visit any time of year, and the ski resorts on this list are a great way to spend the winter months. If you want access to good skiing and a fun atmosphere, all of the locations mentioned above are recommended.

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