6 Countries Where You Can Ski All Year Round

Cori Gramms
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For many skiers, they dread the time when the joy of the winter season comes to an end. Although we associate snowfall with the select winter months, I am happy to reveal that this is not the case in every country. Here's a list of the top 6 countries where you can continue to enjoy the sport off-season as well.

Canada

Due to its climatic conditions, Canada is definitely the best country to ski all year round.

The Rocky Mountains surrounding Banff are well-known for their fantastic skiing conditions. This marvel is possible thanks to the excellent infrastructure ranging from lifts to cables cars. There are, however, many other places in Canada where you can go skiing during the summer.

Hanmer Springs is an alternative to New Zealand's resort town when it comes to winter ski vacations. Largely unregulated, the region offers the possibility to ski powder in a low-key resort. Concerning summer skiing, it is not recommended, but it is possible by using snowshoes with skis.

Japan

Niseko in Japan is not far from Sapporo and receives the most snow in the world. It is one of the best locations for beginners as the snow is soft. Niseko also attracts many skiers and snowboarders due to the incredible diversity of its runs.

Austria

Obergurgl is the highest resort in Tirol and Austria. Let’s just say that Tirol’s highest mountain seems a little higher in the middle of summer! Due to its high altitude, there are reliable snow conditions, and you can go skiing in Obergurgl from October to May.

You can go summer skiing in the Dolomites. The valleys are higher, and when it’s sunny, be sure to enjoy its natural beauty.

Obergurgl is famous for being a family-friendly resort, but it also offers off-piste exploration by more advanced skiers.

Switzerland

You can ski in the sunny part of the Les Diablerets resort. The ski descent is set between the summits of the Aiguille de Midi and Pointe de la Lesse.

You’ll need to pay a little extra for a Les Diablerets lift pass that includes access to the underground cable car. The ski slope has heated tunnels so that you can ride all year long, even in the snow.

Alternatively, you can head to the 2,400-meter high Dufourspitze for different ski descents. Its “Dufour Runner” descent is a great choice.

USA

Lake Tahoe is generally considered the place to be if you love skiing and snowboarding, with an average snowfall of 215.4 inches (5471 mm) and upper elevations receiving up to 500 inches of snow per year. The region boasts fifteen ski resorts spread across the Nevada and California border.

Tahoe gets a lot of snow, and at Heavenly, the combination of its superb snowmaking abilities and 28 chairlifts means it can more than handle the influx of skiers and snowboarders.

Considered a melting pot of the west, Lake Tahoe is the spot offering something for everyone – be it a beginner looking to learn or an expert looking to reap the benefits of the terrific lift system. Whether you are a fan of Alpine or Nordic skiing, you will find something for you here.

New Zealand

You must be thinking I'm crazy: there are no mountains in the middle of the ocean. But there’s something you’re missing here. New Zealand might be an island in the Pacific, but after the extinction of the dinosaurs, a massive volcanic plateau was formed and raised to the surface. The country, known for its whale watching, was named The Alps of the South Pacific.

Mt. Cook, the highest peak of the Southern Alps, stands at 12,218 feet (3,724 meters). It is also home to the “Queenstown Winter Festival." Picturesque ski fields line up the region’s mountains, and a hundred ski lifts transport you to the peaks. What’s more, there are more than 50 kilometers of world-class cross-country ski trails. So if you are skilled in cross-country skiing, the sun can’t keep you down from skiing throughout the year.

Final Thoughts

Winter is just one season and is soon over. It will then be time to pack your skis and forget them for a few months. But what if you could ski all year round?

Sadly, that isn’t possible in most countries. In truth, you’re unlikely to see proper skiing in the summer months, but some resorts can offer limited skiing in summer as well.

The skiing resorts described in the 6 countries above are definitely worth looking into if you dread hanging up your gear at the end of winter.