No matter what splendid ski resort he enjoys in the United States or Canada, a dream lurks in every true skier’s soul of carving down the great slopes of Europe’s Alps. And why not?

The scenery is spectacular. Skiing is generally above timberline on mountains of snow that extend from horizon to horizon. Most ski resorts have base-to-summit verticals that average 5,000 to 7,000 feet. Only a dozen in the United States are actually higher than 3,000 feet.

European ski areas range from large to enormous. Some are even larger. Consider, for example, the Val d’lsere-Tignes complex in France: 102 lifts, including T-bars, cable cars, gondolas, chairlifts, high-speed

detachable quads, and an underground funicular, looking much like a New York City subway, which can whisk 3,000 skiers per hour from the base to the soaring glacier snows. The complex of lifts serves an impossible 200 square miles of skiing.

How about the Arlberg region of Austria? Five interconnected resorts - Lech, Zurs, St. Anton, St. Christoph, and Stuben - offer skiers 162 square miles of trails served by 86 lifts.

Nothing elsewhere in the world compares with the Trois Vallees in France - - Val Thorens, Courchevel, Mirabel - with 200 lifts, 400 miles of marked runs, and an uphill capacity of 230,000 an hour.

Or ski with a guide from country to country, from Zermatt in Switzerland to Cervina in Italy, or from Courmayeur, on the Italian side of Mont Blanc, to Chamonix, on the French side, or between France and Switzerland.

More about Skiing:
It’s impossible to go hungry at Whistler/Blackcomb. Between them the two areas have 15 on-mountain cafeterias, pizza parlors, and restaurants, ranging from the expensive and eleg
Put two great ski mountains side by side, each with more than 5,000 feet of vertical - the most in North America - and you’ve got the first hint of what it’s like to play on th
There are two nurseries and day-care centers for the wee ones from 2 months to 6 years, and ski schools for kids from 3 to 12. Teens have their own programs. A fabled “Kids Only
Vail is a resort put together with superlatives. Whatever can be said of it today will be revised, enlarged, or improved tomorrow. For skiing, it’s among the most imposing areas
A third area is Elkhorn, near Dollar Mountain, a village in its own right with a variety of lodgings and a cluster of shops. And the fourth is incomparable Old Baldy, a roundish mo
Sitting inside the grand palace that is the elegant Sun Valley Lodge, you can look across bathers in an outdoor heated circular pool - the first ever built by a ski resort - to tow

Disabled Competitions

Ski competitions for both standing and sitting skiers are held throughout the country and in Europe. Both Aspen Highlands and Mount Hood Meadows ski resorts…

Mountain Manners

in Kids
However, the fact that they did spend time in various ski schools did not eliminate what I feel keenly is the responsibility of all parents of kids on the…

Nonskiing Necessities

in Kids
Apres-ski boots: These are an important adjunct on a ski trip. The best are those that slip on quickly and are both warm and tolerably lightweight. Laceup…


The ancient grandfather of alpine skiing, cross-country skiing, is alive, healthy, and more popular than at any time in his 4,000-year history. True, no longer…

Whistler/Blackcomb - Part 1

Put two great ski mountains side by side, each with more than 5,000 feet of vertical - the most in North America - and you’ve got the first hint of what it’s…

Who Pays the Piper?

If a skier runs into serious difficulty skiing beyond an area’s boundaries, someone will be along to help him. In the United States, this task usually falls to…