By: National Geographic
March 20, 2013
These ten North American ski towns may not have the name recognition of the world’s best-known destinations, but that’s just fine with them. These are the local’s favorites, the up-and-comers. They’re real towns, often cheaper and friendlier than the big dogs—at least for now. If you’re on the hunt for great skiing without the crowds and glitz, read on.
Best For: Utah powder seekers who don’t like crowds
Long overshadowed by its larger cousin to the south, Ogden sits only 40 miles north of Salt Lake City’s international airport and its two primary mountains—Snowbasin and Powder Mountain—have the same ethereal powder as the heralded resorts in Cottonwood Canyon without the pesky crowds that track everything out by lunch. Spread across the lower flanks of the famed Wasatch Range, Ogden, population 82,825, has recently become a key Rocky Mountain hub for the outdoor industry—Salomon, Atomic, Rossignol, Scott, and Descente all have headquarters here. But its sporty, buttoned-down veneer hides its past life as a rough-and-tumble railroad town and cultural melting pot, a past evident today in its surprising array of ethnic restaurants. The happening scene is on 25th Street downtown, where historic false-front buildings formerly home to brothels and opium dens now house hip bars and eateries. The nearby Salomon Center features indoor skydiving, climbing, and surfing.