Spring is that special time of the ski season for corn snow, sun-drenched après-ski, and fun events at ski resorts. While ski resorts in the east don’t stay open as long as many of the ski resorts out west, spring skiing in the east is a good time. Just don’t forget your sunscreen. When you head east for spring skiing, plan on some wonderful sunny ski days with icy mornings and slushy afternoons. Like much of skiing, timing is everything. We’ve picked a few of the best ski resorts in the east for that classic mashed potato spring skiing. For our broader list of the best resorts for spring skiing across North America, head to this article.
Great ski resorts in the east for spring skiing
Any list of the best spring ski resorts should include Killington, the “Beast of the East,” located up the hill from Rutland, Vermont. Killington often offers skiing and riding as late as Memorial Day in May. Just don’t expect a full mountain adventure — whatever snow is left gets pushed to the Superstar lifeline and gets turned into a bumpy free-for-all. That is not usually the case until May though so for the rest of the spring, you can expect more but still limited terrain options. There’s some corn snow fun when there’s a freeze at night and sunshine in the morning. Note that late-season skiing and riding at Killington will be more for intermediate and advanced skiers. Killington regularly offers a spring pass good from mid-March until the end of the season that’s also good at neighboring Pico, conditions permitting. (See our list here of some of the best spring ski passes.)
Whiteface at Lake Placid, New York
Spring has sprung by the time mid-March arrives in the Adirondacks at Lake Placid. It often makes for the combined snowiest and sunniest time of the season thanks to Whiteface’s elevation at almost 5,000 feet. Think of Whiteface a little bit like skiing on mashed potatoes, both heavy and soft. Spring corn snow is generally found higher up on steeper terrain. Your leg muscles may burn, but that’s when you can treat yourself after a day of skiing at Mirror Lake Inn Resort and Spa. This spring, the resort will be running a heavily discounted afternoon ski program for riders of all ages. Every Tuesday and Friday, March 24th to April 7th from 2:00 pm to 5:00 pm for $10. Quite possibly the best deal in the Dacks. Add on rentals and a one-hour class for $10 each and you got yourself a deal. Swing into Spring while you still can as Whiteface often closes by early- to mid-April.
As the self-proclaimed, “King of Spring,” Sugarloaf truly comes alive in the warmer months. The winds die down, the temps rise, and the only above-treeline skiing becomes more accessible and sought after. The mountain’s popular Reggae Fest event also happens in the spring, which brings guests from all over the East Coast to enjoy a weekend full of sunshine laps, slush bumps, silly costumes, and live music right at the base. It’s one of the best ski events of the season and helps close out the winter in the best way possible. Boasting the second-highest peak in Maine allows it to retain much of its snow later than many other resorts in the area and Sugarloaf usually closes in late April.
Sunday River, Maine
The spring at Sunday River is all about securing the best deck spot for après. Don’t get me wrong, the soft skiing is fun too, but there’s nothing like swapping out your goggles for some shades and soaking in the warm sun with a cold beer. Lucky for you, Sunday River has numerous lodges with deck and dining options to suit your needs. From the Upper Deck at White Cap Lodge over to the Barker Bar, you’ve got plenty of spots to choose from for a sunshine beer in between hot laps. There’s also the beloved Foggy Goggle which has the best nachos around. Sunday River likes to keep things spinning as long as possible and will usually close at the end of April or the beginning of May.
Stowe Mountain Resort, Vermont
When spring arrives at Stowe – the Grande Dame of Eastern ski resorts – pay attention and enjoy the softer snow in the mornings and warmer weather in the afternoons. Warmer weather arriving in Northern Vermont brings some fun events including the Mount Mansfield Ski Club’s Sugar Slalom. Junior racers and some members of the U.S. Ski Team ski in costumes, and you can enjoy music and a post-ski barbecue in the parking lot. Stowe typically closes in mid-April.
Jay Peak, Vermont
The snowiest mountain on the East Coast can still hold it down during the spring. For a less crowded spring skiing experience, Jay is the place to be. Many city-dwelling East Coasters are not willing to make the trek up to northern Vermont this late in the season so lift lines shrink dramatically while there is still a decent amount of snow to be found. Less windy rides and frigid fingers make for a day focused on tearing it up while you still can. The tram will shut down, but many of the other lifts will remain spinning, and, if you’re lucky, there will still be some of Jay’s famous tree skiing open.
Cannon Mountain, New Hampshire
Cannon is the highest ski area in the Granite State, taking skiers and riders up to 4,078 feet high. Mornings can be a little icy for skiers, while the sunny, corn-snow afternoons are always fun. Cannon’s plunging Front Five attracts spring experts, particularly on the slightly softer springtime moguls on Paulie’s Folly. Book early to stay at the Franconia Inn, a charming inn dating back to 1853. Cannon, like most New Hampshire ski resorts, closes by early- to mid-April.
Bretton Woods, New Hampshire
Bretton Woods, along with its historic Omni Mount Washington Resort, makes a perfect pair for a last grasp spring weekend. The ski area itself is New Hampshire’s largest ski area with 464 acres of skiing and snowboarding, and home to the state’s only 8-passenger gondola. Bretton Woods typically stays open until early- to mid-April. Don’t miss the all-new Rosebrook Lodge at the top of the gondola, which offers up panoramic views of the Presidential Range. Bonus: Spring often means great deals at the hotel (which also owns the ski area).
Wildcat Mountain, New Hampshire
There’s always tons of activity to be found in the White Mountains of New Hampshire. While the bowl at Tuckermanies Ravine will be jam-packed with folks earning their turns, head over to Wildcat Mountain just next door and find sunny skies and no lift lines. The snow will be slushy, the vibes will be high, and on a clear day, you can get a solid view of the famed Mt. Washington. Wildcat’s 4,062 feet of elevation keep the snow coming for longer than resorts further south. Wildcat tends to stay open until mid-April before transitioning over to a popular summer hiking destination.
Jiminy Peak, Massachusetts
Jiminy Peak, as the largest ski and snowboard resort in southern New England, is a fun ski resort for the entire family, and like Wachusett, also has night skiing. One of Jiminy Peak’s most unique spring events is in early March when STRIDE Adaptive Sports welcomes regional Wounded Warrior rehabilitative sport and mentorship programs. Warriors and their families enjoy two days of skiing and snowboarding activities. With the support of STRIDE’s adaptive equipment and teaching methods, the veterans learn how to overcome the challenges of injury and enjoy independence and freedom through sport. Historically, the resort closes in late March or early April.
More Spring Skiing Reading
- The best of spring skiing in North America
- Where to go spring skiing in the West
- Where to go spring skiing in the Midwest
- Where to go spring skiing in the Rockies
- Where to go spring skiing in Canada