What matters when it comes to snow for February skiing:
For a lot of ski areas, February is the best month for a visit when it comes to snow conditions. Mountains have usually filled in by now, even during weaker snow years, and the North American sun still is subdued enough to keep most ski areas from dipping into a freeze-thaw cycle. That said, February is the month when North America gains more sunlight minutes than any other. So the end of February is quite a bit different than early February, when it comes to how the sun is affecting the snow.
For instance, Jackson Hole, where prolific snowfall has usually thouroughly buried its rocky and serrated terrain by February, becomes highly exposed to the sun by the end of the month. Most of the resort faces east, and the sun is peaking over the eastern horizon earlier in the morning and with more strength at the end of February compared with earlier in the month. If it's stormy, this may not matter—and that often can be the case in Jackson—but if it's clear and sunny, the snowpack will suffer more quickly here than ski resorts with more north-facing terrain.
Crowds: February is the kickoff for school breaks than run all the way through March and keep most ski areas busy. Early February—the period before Presidents' Day Weekend—is the best time to avoid crowds during this month. After that, spring breaks start popping. In addition, many skiers view late February as an ideal time to ski: they know that enough snow has fallen to get ski areas fully open, but the spring conditions of March haven't yet come to pass.
In western North America, more ski resorts peak in February than in any other month. To learn more about what affects the skiing characteristics of a given mountain and how they're affected by the time of the winter, see our snow rankings page.