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Best Snow In Vermont - Right Now And Historically
BY Christopher Steiner

Vermont has an array of different mountain and snow environments. The best snow in Vermont is determined by the quality, frequency and volume of snow—something that varies greatly across the state's different mountains and hills.

This is the definitive guide for finding the best snow in Vermont. Snow-seekers can reference this to find out what ski resorts will receive the most snow in Vermont during the next 10 days and where it has snowed the most during the past 10 days in Vermont.

Farther down on the page, readers can reference 40 years of data that show what Vermont ski resorts have the best snow conditions historically—and this is something that tends to hold up year after year.

This article and data were updated on December 10, 2023. Updated daily.

Vermont Snow Totals Last 10 Days (inches)
Vermont Snow Potential, Next 10 Days (inches)

The best snow in Vermont falls on a persistent mountain ridge that runs from the border with Quebec down to the middle of the state. The ski resorts that benefit from this, starting with Jay Peak in the north down to Okemo at the southern end of the ridge, tend to be the best bets for skiing in the east. The deepest and best snow on this ridge resides at three ski resorts—Jay, Stowe and Smugglers—and that's reflected in the rankings.

The highest reaches of Vermont's ski resorts offer some small slices of alpine environment, a rarity on the east side of North America. Vermont's northern mountains offer the best snow in the East. Here, there are a bevy of factors, from weather patterns to a pronounced northern ridge that runs north-south helps scrape more out from passing storms. The southern hills of Vermont are more traditional Eastern ski outposts, with modest snowfall numbers. Vermont, like the rest of the east, also faces the prospect of rain a few times a winter, which can wreak havoc on the snowpack.

These are Vermont's ski resorts ranked in order of their overall snow quality, which reflects volume (average annual snowfall), consistency (smaller standard deviations are better), and a mountain's ability to preserve snow (higher relative elevations and north-facing terrain are key).

Ski Resorts with Best Snow in Vermont

   Resort True
Base & Top Elev.
Days w/ more
than 6 inches
Months w/ more
than 90 inches
Months w/ less
than 30 inches
North-facing Terrain
East-facing Terrain
West-facing Terrain
South-facing Terrain
Vermont Snow Score
Jay Peak
322" 1815'
15.1% 22.2% 7.4% 40% 57% 0% 3% 52.4 more
305" 2235'
13.3% 6.8% 11.3% 35% 50% 0% 15% 48.5 more
Smugglers Notch
322" 1030'
13.1% 8.6% 11.2% 65% 0% 35% 0% 48.4 more
267" 1483'
11.3% 6.5% 14.1% 28% 60% 0% 12% 41.8 more
240" 1165'
10.5% 5.2% 19.7% 30% 55% 0% 15% 41.7 more
Pico Mountain
250" 2000'
11.0% 6.0% 20.0% 85% 5% 10% 0% 41.3 more
Mad River Glen
269" 1600'
12.0% 6.5% 13.1% 25% 65% 0% 10% 38.8 more
167" 1144'
6.9% 1.1% 55.9% 20% 60% 0% 20% 33.0 more
189" 1872'
8.0% 0.8% 41.0% 38% 50% 2% 10% 31.3 more
Burke Mountain
200" 1256'
8.0% 1.0% 40.0% 65% 35% 0% 0% 31.2 more
Mount Snow
167" 1900'
7.2% 0.0% 47.6% 30% 50% 0% 20% 28.8 more
Bromley Mountain
145" 1950'
7.0% 1.0% 51.0% 0% 60% 15% 25% 21.8 more

Jay Peak - Snow Score: 52.4

Jay Peak's location near the northern tip of the Green Mountains and its proximity to large bodies of water means it often catches moist air. As this moist air is forced upwards by the mountain's topography, it cools and condenses, leading to snowfall, a process known as orographic lift. The "Jay Cloud" can essentially be thought of as a microclimate that frequently forms around Jay Peak. This microclimate results in the mountain receiving consistently higher snowfall totals compared to other resorts in the Northeast.
With an impressive annual snowfall of 322 inches, the resort boasts numbers that would be good even if it were located in the Rockies. Its base elevation of 1,815 feet, fairly high for the east, helps preserve snow quality. With 40% of its slopes facing north, Jay Peak excels in snow conservation. Its mere 3% of south-facing terrain hardly impacts the overall snow quality. For those chasing powder, Jay Peak offers a good frequency, with 15.1% of winter days witnessing more than six inches of snowfall.

Jay Peak has the best snow in Vermont—and the East.
Jay Peak has the best snow in Vermont—and the East.

Stowe - Snow Score: 48.5

Stowe, located in the northern reaches of the ridge that runs down Vermont's spine, offers one of the strongest snow profiles in the east. Sitting near the zenith of Mt. Mansfield, the highest peak in Vermont, helps to draw more from storms that don't amount to much elsewhere. With 305 inches of annual snowfall, the mountain is far above average when it comes to straight snow volume in the east. Its significant base elevation of 2,235 feet ensures the snow remains in peak condition. While its 35% north-facing slopes are a testament to good snow retention, the presence of 15% south-facing terrains could be a slight impediment. Nonetheless, skiers can eagerly anticipate the 13.3% of winter days that are graced with over six inches of snow at Stowe, a big number for Vermont.

Smugglers Notch - Snow Score: 48.4

Smugglers Notch, with a Snow Score of 48.4, offers one of the best snow environments in Vermont and the east. An average snowfall of 322 inches blankets its slopes annually. Smuggs shares many of the traits that make Stowe such a strong snow performer, as it sits close by. While its base elevation of 1,030 feet might not be the loftiest, the substantial 65% north-facing slopes more than compensate, enhancing its snow retention. The complete absence of south-facing slopes adds to its snow presevation prowess. Winter enthusiasts can look forward to 13.1% of the season bringing over six inches of snow, high for the east.

Killington - Snow Score: 41.7

Killington, with a Snow Score of 41.7, remains a favored spot in the Vermont skiing scene. It sees a yearly snowfall of 240 inches, providing a good base for skiing. The base elevation of 1,165 feet and the 30% north-facing slopes offer moderate snow preservation. Killington's 15% south-facing runs pose challenges to optimal snow longevity and are to be avoided after the coldest parts of winter as they will slip into a hard freeze-thaw cycle. At Killington, 10.5% of winter days bring more than six inches of snowfall, a strong number for the east.

Pico Mountain - Snow Score: 41.3

Pico receives 250 inches of snow on abase elevation of 2,000 feet. Combine with its terrain, on which 85% of its slopes face north, Pico is an excellent preserver of snow. The 11% of winter days receiving heavy snowfall further elevate the skiing experience.

Sugarbush - Snow Score: 41.8

Sugarbush receives a respectable 267 inches of snow annually. A base elevation of 1,483 feet and 28% of north-facing terrains offer a mediocre snow conservation environment. The presence of 12% south-facing slopes might reduce snow longevity. Skiers have decent powder odds here, with 11.3% of winter days that see generous snow dumps of six inches or more.

Mad River Glen - Snow Score: 38.8

Mad River Glen, with its Snow Score of 38.8, presents a distinctive skiing ambiance. Graced with 269 inches of snow annually and a high regional base elevation of 1,600 feet, it provides ample opportunities to find good snow. Its modest amount of north-facing slopes, only 25%, means snow retention isn't a major strength. Frequent snowfalls, with 12% of winter days seeing over six inches of snow, make it a sought-after destination for powder seekers.

Stratton - Snow Score: 31.3

Stratton's slopes enjoy 189 inches of snow annually. The base elevation of 1,872 feet aids in snow retention, and with 38% of its terrains facing north, Stratton holds its own in the snow conservation game. Stratton sees 8% of winter days bring more than six inches of snow.

Okemo - Snow Score: 33.0

Okemo boasts an annual snowfall of 167 inches. A base elevation of 1,144 makes it about average for Vermont. However, the resort presents a mixed bag when it comes to slope exposures: while 20% of its slopes face north, the same percentage faces south, which can compromise snow retention during warmer spells. Okemo offers a modest number of powder days with 6.9% of winter dates witnessing more than six inches of snow.

Burke Mountain - Snow Score: 31.2

Burke Mountain, with a Snow Score of 31.2, is a reliable ski destination in Vermont. The resort enjoys 200 inches of snow annually. A base elevation of 1,256 feet combined with an impressive 65% of north-facing slopes underlines its snow preservation capabilities. The absence of south-facing terrain is a bonus. Powder enthusiasts can look forward to 8% of winter days when the resort is graced with more than six inches of snowfall.

Mount Snow - Snow Score: 28.8

Mount Snow receives 167 inches of snow yearly. Its 1,900 feet base elevation is high for Vermont, but its 30% north-facing and 20% south-facing terrains present challenges for optimal snow preservation. Still, the resort promises powder days, with 7.2% of winter days seeing more than six inches of snow.

Bromley Mountain - Snow Score: 21.8

Bromley sees an annual snowfall of 145 inches. While its base elevation of 1,950 feet is high for Vermont, the resort lacks north-facing slopes and a quarter of its terrain faces north. Seven percent of winter days bring more than six inches of snow.

Christopher Steiner is the founder of ZRankings, and a New York Times Bestselling Author of two books. Find him on Twitter.