Beech Mountain Resort is the highest ski area in the Eastern U.S., with a peak elevation of 5,506 feet.
It has 17 trails – including an expansive terrain park – on 95 skiable acres serviced by eight lifts, including two state-of-the-art Doppelmayr quad lifts installed for the 2018-19 season. The resort’s ski school offers programs for young and old, beginner or advanced. Snowboarding instruction is provided by an on-site Burton Learn-to-Ride Center.
A unique aspect of Beech Mountain Resort is the alpine village at the base of the slopes. The village is home to ice skating, snow tubing, a two-story ski lodge, craft brewery, ski rental shops, outdoor fire pit, snack bar and a souvenir store.
Beech Mountain has some of the widest runs in the High Country of North Carolina, including the Oz Run on the backside of the mountain. The Oz Run is popular because it is one of the west-face ski runs in the United States.
At the peak is the 5,506 Skybar, named for the mountain’s signature elevation. The glass roundhouse is the perfect place to grab a beverage at the end of a full day of skiing or to warm up between runs. The Skybar has heated restrooms and a large observation deck overlooking the slopes.
Recent investments in equipment have greatly increased the snow making capability, and the resort also have a full-time terrain park coordinator who updates the terrain park features on a regular basis.
Two unique services offered by Beech Mountain Resort are an on-site nursery and an apparel rental shop. No need to pack ski pants, ski bibs or jackets.
The typical ski season for Beech Mountain runs from Thanksgiving weekend to the middle of March. For more information, visit www.BeechMountainResort.com.
On the snow or in the air, a thrilling winter experience awaits at Hawksnest Resort.
Hawksnest is home to the East Coast’s largest snow tubing park for those who wish to play in the snow, and a special Snowbird Zipline Tour for those who want to fly through the air.
On the ground, the Hawksnest snow tubing park has four interconnected areas consisting of more than 30 tubing lanes. The lanes are 400 to 1,000 feet in length with two moving carpet lifts that continuously take tubers back to the top for more fun. The tubing park has 100% snowmaking and lighting on all lanes, providing the best possible conditions for the whole family.
Hawksnest is open seven days a week throughout winter (weather permitting) with sessions lasting one hour and 45 minutes. There are four daily sessions Monday through Thursday, five sessions on Fridays, Saturdays and holidays, and three sessions each Sunday. Tubing is open to anyone age three and older.
Hawksnest also offers an opportunity for zip lining high above the tubing lanes. Each winter the resort operates a Snowbird Tour that traverses four cables above the snow. The four cables are part of the larger Hawk Tour, which is comprised of 11 cables in warmer months.
The Snowbird Tour takes about 1.5 to 2 hours to complete and participants must be five years or older.
Also, don't forget to enjoy the coffee bar, Carolina barbecue and tasty pizza before, during and after your tubing and zipping sessions.
North Carolina’s largest ski area is Sugar Mountain Resort. Sugar offers 21 trails and nine lifts, including a hi-speed detachable six-person chairlift that is the fastest in North Carolina. The peak elevation is 5,300 feet, and Sugar has 115 acres of skiable terrain.
Sugar also boasts the only double black diamond slope in North Carolina, as well as the largest vertical drop (1,200 feet) in the state. Upper Flying Mile is an intermediate slope that connects with Lower Flying Mile for a total run of 1.5 miles long, while Gunther's Way is the newest slope in the NC High Country. Gunther's Way is rated difficult and is 2,900 feet in length.
Meanwhile, guided snowshoeing tours are another aspect that makes Sugar unique.
Sugar also has an outdoor ice skating rink and snow tubing park with magic carpet lift, plus the Sugar Bear Ski School, which offers a range of lessons for all ages and abilities.
The typical ski season for Sugar Mountain runs from mid November to late March. For more information, visit www.SkiSugar.com.