I Love Las Vegas: Las Vegas Ski & Snowboard Resort

Snowboards Las VegasIt may be 65 degrees in the Las Vegas Valley, but it snowed on the ski mountain a mere 30-minute drive from our house. I know, I know. The words “Las Vegas” and “snow” do not belong in the same breath, but it’s true: Las Vegas has a ski and snowboard resort that is said to rival some of the most famous mountains in Utah, and it was the first ski resort to open this winter.

So there you go.

I’ll be the first to admit that I love the warm weather that comes with Las Vegas living, so the idea of bundling up in a winter jacket and layers that involved long underwear left my teeth chattering. Add to that the fact that I haven’t skied in nearly ten years and it was a whopping 15 degrees at 9:00 on a Saturday morning when I arrived at Las Vegas Ski & Snowboard Resort and you have a fairly good idea of how I felt when I tumbled out of the car onto this place that felt a million miles from my nice warm bed.

Las Vegas Ski & Snow Resort is fairly robust considering the constraints its working within. If the mountain face was pointed even a few degrees in any other direction, the snow conditions would be drastically different, but because of its unique location in Lee’s Canyon at the base of Lee Peak, the resort is able to offer 16 trails and three chair lifts over 385 skiable acres. A large-scale renovation project expected to take 10 to 12 years to complete will increase the size of the resort to 50 trails and 10 lifts. Three special events and ski school yurts have already been built.

Ski Slope Las Vegas Ski Snowboard ResortObviously big things are on the horizon at Las Vegas Ski & Snowboard Resort, but for me, the goal was simply to stay upright on my skies. Pizza slice, not French fries, my high school friends from Wisconsin reminded me when I mentioned I was venturing out into the snow. Stuffed like a marshmallow already with two layers of pants, two shirts, a coat, gloves, a hat and a scarf, I shuffled into the gear room to put on snow pants, stuff my feet into boots and gather up my skis and poles.

Knowing I hadn’t skied in what seemed like eons, it seemed like the smart decision to sign up for lessons when I was given the opportunity, but I discovered on my first slide down the hill that skiing comes back to a person kind of like riding a bike does. I held fast in my pizza slice, snowplowed to the bottom of the hill and hopped on the ski lift. The chilly morning nip had melted from the air and the sun reflected on the slopes. For a few brief moments I even slipped my gloves off.

I took a few more trips down the bunny slope—safe and tame—before venturing up the mountain to something a bit more challenging. This time the chair lift rose higher and the ride was longer. We rode over the stunt area and I watched in awe as snowboarders slid down railings and over jumps. I found out later our foreign exchange student had taken a jump or two and she gave the snowboarding experience two thumbs up. I must be getting old because while I like watching these kind of stunts, I can’t imagine doing anything like what these snowboarders were doing. My skis will stay in a pizza slice, thank you very much.

Las Vegas Ski Snowboard ResortAt the top of the ski run, I took the path of least resistance (that is to say, those marked with green circles) all the way back down to the lodge. It was a fun, exhilarating run, and I was thrilled to realize I hadn’t lost too much since I’d last visited a ski hill.

I absolutely love living in Las Vegas for all of its action, activity and quirky attractions, and Las Vegas Ski & Snowboard Resort is just one more reason to love my city. Despite being a warm-weather girl, I love knowing that I can go from city life in capris and a t-shirt in one hour and be on a ski lift the next. What’s not to love about that?

If you go:

  • Plan to hit up the resort in the morning. Because Las Vegas Ski & Snowboard Resort generates its own power, it closes at 4:00 in the afternoon, so evening skiing isn’t an option.
  • Take a lesson if you’re new to skiing or snowboarding. The beginner lesson package includes a 2-hour group lesson, equipment rental and a lift ticket.
  • The food offerings are not all that stellar, so I suggest you pack a snack or bring your own lunch. With the expansion of the resort, there may be better dining options in the coming years.
  • A single day lift ticket on the weekend costs $60, which might seem steep but it’s actually in par with similar mountains. What you get for your money at Las Vegas Ski & Snowboard Resort are short chair lift lines, lots of staff on site and well-groomed runs.
  • Check out the events that are going on at the resort. Races, competitions and mixers are frequently scheduled, and visitors are welcome to watch or participate (depending on the event).

My experience at Las Vegas Ski & Snowboard was compensated but all opinions are my own.

16 Responses to “I Love Las Vegas: Las Vegas Ski & Snowboard Resort”

  1. John

    I honestly had no idea such a place existed…I can’t believe it’s only 30 minutes away! That’s as far as the resorts are from Salt Lake City.

    Reply
    • JoAnna

      Hard to believe, isn’t it? I love Las Vegas. It continues to surprise me.

      Reply
  2. Abby

    You did great!! I still can’t believe we went either. Doesn’t seem real lol. I was eye-ing your (real) pizza slice. So it wasn’t that tasty?

    Reply
    • JoAnna

      Yeah, the photo wasn’t so hot. We all felt awesome in the morning but the food took its toll on all of us. I hope the food improves with the expansion.

      Reply
  3. Randy

    So cool! I never knew Las Vegas had anything like this. It makes sense though. Spending a good amount of the last 13 years in San Diego, I use to frequent the mountains in San Bernardino a lot. Personally, I think it’s a lot more fun to be able to live in a warm place and visit the snow when you want it then to live in it 24/7 during winter.

    Reply
    • JoAnna

      I agree because I’m not a cold weather girl. I don’t mind playing in the snow, but I always want to return to the warmth!

      Reply
  4. Turtle

    That’s hilarious! I would never in my life have thought you could get to something like this in the middle of the desert!

    Reply
    • JoAnna

      Strange things in strange places. The city is surrounded by mountains, though, so anything is possible!

      Reply
  5. Emily @FamilyNLifeLV

    Everytime I saw you ski that day you were doing awesome! It is so great to live in a city with so much to offer!!

    Reply
  6. Reena Ganga

    Wow, very cool! I can’t imagine many people know this place exists – I certainly wouldn’t have believed you could go skiing right beside a desert!

    Reply
    • JoAnna

      A lot of people don’t believe it, and I’m glad so many people are learning about it.

      Reply
  7. Nomadic Samuel

    What a surprise! I would have never guessed you’d be able to do this so close to Vegas 🙂

    Reply
    • JoAnna

      Surprise! Visit the resort pool in the morning and ski in the afternoon … or something like that!

      Reply
  8. DTravelsRound

    My dad is coming to town this weekend … I totally pitched him on going up there for a ski day!

    Reply
  9. Deb

    Who would have thought Vegas had a ski hill. Can you believe we’ve never been to Vegas? We really have to do a road trip soon to hit all the places in the US we haven’t been yet. This is some good motivation for us. I love hitting the slopes when we travel.

    Reply
    • JoAnna

      I think lots of people are surprised by the things they don’t know about Las Vegas. It’s a city that keeps people guessing!

      Reply

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