Snow Sports in the Grand Canyon State



If you’re not an Arizona native, you might be perplexed by the idea of snow sports in the Grand Canyon State. Believe it or not, though, Arizona is a fantastic place for skiing and snowboarding with two top-tier ski resorts. Learn more about the unique features of each below.

Arizona Snowbowl 


Arizona Snowbowl is one of the best-known ski resorts on the West Coast thanks in part to its 80-year history. It has a fun, young vibe with Northern Arizona State University just 30 minutes away, and it’s easy to get to from the Valley as it’s only two and a half hours from downtown Phoenix. 

With four terrain parks, intermediate runs and even a few expert runs, this resort is fantastic for both beginner and advanced skiers and snowboarders. There are 55 runs and 700 skiable acres, so while it’s not the state’s largest resort, there’s certainly no shortage of skiing to enjoy. 

Overall, Arizona Snowbowl is a great spot for younger skiers and snowboarders who want a challenge. Plus, it’s surrounded by a great city to enjoy after a long day on the slopes. It’s ideal for weekend trips thanks to Flagstaff’s multitude of great bars, restaurants and overall fun, small-town feel. 

Sunrise Park Resort 


Sunrise Park Resort is the state’s largest resort and a great family-friendly option with exclusive beginner areas, childcare and kid-focused coaching. While it’s closer to four hours away from downtown Phoenix, it’s a great vacation spot with a resort hotel and several nearby towns like Pinetop and Show Low to enjoy. 

It also has something for nearly everyone with two terrain parks, lots of beginner runs, several intermediate runs and a few advanced runs. However, there aren’t any expert-level runs in its mix of 65. 

This is the top option for beginners and more laidback skiers, with lots of activities and resort restaurants. 

Where Else You Can Ski 

Smaller resorts include Arizona Nordic Village in Flagstaff, Mount Lemmon Ski Valley in Tucson and Elk Ridge Ski Area in Williams.  

What Else You Need to Know 

Arizona’s ski season begins in November and, depending on the weather, can stretch into April. 

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Want more? Check out our recommendations for beginner-friendly golf courses! 

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