These ski resorts in the US, Canada, and Europe boast the best programming and lessons for female skiers and snowboarders of all levels.
In America, women’s-only ski programming has mushroomed to the point where you’d be hard-pressed to find a resort that doesn’t offer an all-female lesson at the very least. Carving spaces specifically for women within a sport culture that can still feel overly competitive and intimidating, such courses ensure fun and supportive experiences for beginners and advanced skiers alike. Of course, they’re also an optimal way to meet other women with similarly adventurous spirits and ultimately build a network of friends and fellow snow sport enthusiasts all over the world.
While most common within the United States, female-only programming is starting to gain traction at a dappling of international resorts as well, making overseas ski trips all the more enticing. Check out nine such winter wonderlands below and get ready to shred.
1. For the Experienced Shredder
Snowbird Ski and Summer Resort in Snowbird, Utah
Utah has been steadily gaining traction as America’s favorite ski state and Snowbird is undoubtedly one of the reasons why. Boasting sweeping views, spacious trails, and routes of every level, it’s an ideal spot for families and pros alike. Taught by various professional female skiers, their women’s camps cater to the more experienced athlete—you’ll need to be able to manage blue and black trails to play. Along with daily coaching, the five-day camps promise opportunities to go backcountry skiing, participate in gates and powder clinics, and more. As another treat, Snowbird also offers Women’s Wednesdays on select dates throughout January and February where you can expect a small group size and individualized attention.
2. For Skiers of All Stripes
Keystone Ski Resort in Keystone, Colorado
Just an 80-minute drive from downtown Denver, Keystone is one of the more convenient resorts to travel to from Colorado’s capitol. Loved for its bowls, chutes, and tree runs that span across six peaks, it’s known as a destination for experienced skiers. However, Keystone’s Ultimate 4 ski lesson is perfect for the beginner skier or boarder and will help acquaint you with the mountain in no time. Capped at four women per lesson, it provides individualized attention to ensure you feel supported, safe, and confident during your lesson. Looking for something a bit more challenging? The resort also offers two-day Betty Fest workshops, which are aimed at intermediate and advanced skiers and boarders and are taught by Keystone’s top female PSIA/AASI Certified Instructors.
3. If You Like Your Slopes to be Scenic
Méribel in Les Allues, France
It’s every skiers dream to zip down slopes within the French Alps and Méribel, Tignes, and Val d’Isère are some of the most idyllic places to do it. With all three located in the Tarentaise Valley (Tignes and Val d’Isère border each other and comprise the Espace Killy ski center, while Méribel is an hour and a half away driving), they’re worth building an extended snow sport vacation around.
Interestingly, finding women’s programming outside of North America is a somewhat difficult task, but thanks to The Development Center, a British ski and snowboard school that operates in the French Alps, Méribel plays host to women-only clinics taught in English. Held across three days for three hours per day, the clinics consist of small group classes (three to six participants max) that cover “technical and psychological lessons” and focus on “regaining and building confidence on terrain suitable for you,” as described online.
4. If You Believe Skiing and Self-Care Go Hand-in-Hand
Stratton Mountain Resort in Stratton, Vermont
As one of the most accessible resorts from New York City, Boston, and other nearby cities, Stratton is well-known among the East Coast ski crowd. Promising to “supercharge” your skiing and snowboarding skills in a supportive and encouraging environment, their women’s ski and snowboard camps are an excellent way to acquaint yourself with the mountain. Whether you’re an absolute beginner or a seasoned expert, they’ll have a three-day clinic that’s right for you. Certain midweek clinics even include yoga sessions and meditation and mindfulness classes—if you’re able to sneak away from work (or you’re cool with playing hooky), this is a great place to recharge.
5. For the Serious (Yet Glamorous) Skier
Verbier in Verbier, Switzerland
A glamorous destination that, while expensive, is worth the cash for its ample bars, restaurants, lodges, and pristine trails of all levels, Verbier is one of Switzerland’s premier places to ski. In 2015, two instructors working at Verbier decided to break off and create a new kind of ski school called Element, which includes—you guessed it—stellar women’s programming. Available in three levels, Element offers three types of camps: weekend camps, which are capped at eight participants; five day camps, which are also capped at eight participants; and backcountry camps, which last for two days and are capped at six participants. Each course includes five hours skiing per day, expert coaching, video analysis, and a biomechanics and psychology session, so if you’re serious about improving your skills, Verbier might be the spot to do it.
6. For Snowbunnies and Social Butterflies
Alta Ski Area in Alta, Utah
Located adjacent to Snowbird, Alta is another ace destination in Utah. Boasting ski-in/ ski-out access, a cozy après ski bar with stunning mountain views, and quirky room decor, Alta Lodge is the preeminent place to stay when visiting the picturesque town. Beyond its amenities, it also hosts a women’s program that The New York Times has described as the “Bentley of the many clinics, lessons and camps offered throughout North America.” Geared toward intermediate and advanced skiers, the program includes three days of skiing with top-tier instructors, four nights of lodging with breakfasts and dinners included, skis and boots, a yoga class, and more. Women from all over the world flock to this program, so you can expect to build your network of fellow snowbunnies.
7. For an All-Girls Group Ski Trip
Jackson Hole Mountain Resort in Jackson Hole, Wyoming
Known for its “cowboy powder,” aerial tram, and lively après scene, Jackson Hole is another superb resort for skiers of all levels and all ages. Boasting two different women’s camps, it’s an especially great destination for a girl’s trip. The first is their Lady Shred camp, which is appropriate for intermediate to advanced skiers and snowboarders and spans five days. Including 15% off the best available rate at the local Teton Lodge, it’s an ideal package. The second camp is an even more decadent offering. Called the Elevate women’s ski camp, it’s led by Jackson Hole’s top female coaches along with pro-athletes Jess McMillan, Kim Havell, and Crystal Wright. Appropriate for intermediate and advanced skiers, it lasts for five days and includes trail and backcountry skiing, pilates classes, and forming lasting connections with fellow female adventurers who are part of the Jackson Hole Babeforce.
8. For Beginners, Ski Moms, or Ski Winos (or All Three)
Breckenridge Ski Resort in Breckinridge, Colorado
An excellent family-friendly spot that’s both affordable and laidback, Breckenridge is a right of passage for every Colorado skier. When it comes to women’s programming, the resort has some of the most robust offerings around. First up is their three-day women’s camp, which is available to all levels and includes daily coaching as well as after-hours discussions about women-specific ski equipment. Next is their Women’s Ultimate 4 ski lesson, which caps classes at four participants and provides more individualized coaching. Have a child who’s super into skiing? Consider joining a Breck Bombshells multi-week ski program. Appropriate for women of all levels, it’s held from 9am -12pm, which is during normal ski school hours. Drop them off, hit the slopes with other ski moms, and improve your skills. And finally, Breckenridge really knocks their programming out of the park with their Women and Wine lesson. Every Wednesday, hit the slopes around 1:15 pm for an all-level ski lesson, then wrap up the halfday with a complimentary glass of wine.
9. If You Want Brand-Name Skiing
Whistler Blackcomb in Whistler, Canada
The mere mention of Whistler might send chills up the spine of anyone who’s ever had the pleasure of skiing its epic slopes. Located near Vancouver in British Columbia, it’s one of the largest resorts in North America and boasts a charming chalet-style pedestrian village at its base. The North Face happens to host two-day all-level women’s ski camps at the resort, which include five hours of skiing per day, a private après after the first day of skiing, and a goodie bag from The North Face.