In a state known for rural beauty, Sugarbush may have the prettiest corner of any ski area. In the bucolic Mad River Valley, residents find a way to embrace tourism without spoiling the natural beauty that attracts tourists. Along with beautiful views, Sugarbush has an often under-appreciated variety of charismatic terrain. Skiers rave about Castlerock, of course, with its ungroomed steeps and throwback fixed-grip vibe.
Over at Mt. Ellen, Sugarbush’s whole other ski area connected by commuter lift and the huge tracts of Slide Brook sidecountry, there’s more of the real-Vermonty feel on trails like Black Diamond, Exterminator, Tumbler, and Hammerhead. That said, the resort’s finer things don’t go neglected. Visitors praise the dining experiences both on and off-mountain, the tastefulness of Lincoln Peak’s base-area architecture, and the resort’s bold decision to offer Vermont-only beers from its taps.
The one criticism of Sugarbush: it’s a little hard to get to. Of all the ways to get to the mountain, none perfect, Route 100 is certainly the prettiest. The stretch connecting Killington and Sugarbush might be one of the most scenic drives in all of Vermont. – Joe Cutts
Resort Guide 2022—Sugarbush, Vt.
Sugarbush Mountain Stats
Sugarbush Pass Info
Sugarbush is on the Ikon Pass and the Mountain Collective. Ikon Pass holders get 7 days at the resort; Ikon Base pass holders get 5 blackout-restricted days. Mountain Collective pass holders get 2 days at the resort, plus 50 percent off additional days.
From lodging and and dining to off-slope activities and local tips, here are the SKI editors’ picks for what to do in Sugarbush, Vt.
Perennial faves include The Hydeaway (local flavor) and Lawson’s Finest Liquids (beer worship), but the Green Mountain Lounge at Mt. Ellen is a true classic.
If you came for the beer, you’re in the right place. The Bush exclusively serves Vermont brews, including Sip of Sunshine, which is brewed locally and is also available at the Lawson’s Finest taproom in town.
Everything changes. Vermont's Sugarbush is no stranger to that concept. So when Alterra Mountain Company bought the resort late last year, the locals let out a collective sigh. What would this mean for their beloved ski mecca, “the Vermontiest of Vermont ski resorts?” Turns out, change isn’t always to be feared.
A new base village and a growing emphasis on steep, powder-stuffed glades have made Sugarbush one of Vermont’s top resorts. The ski area offers 111 trails, served by 16 lifts, spread across three peaks, each with its own distinct flavor. For manicured steeps and fat bumps, hit Lincoln Peak. For no-bullshit, rowdy terrain, schralp Castlerock. For underutilized glades and meandering cruisers, there’s always Mount Ellen. Here’s how to make the most of all three.
A single-day lesson always helps, but to truly transform your skiing takes a commitment of time and energy. Here are our favorite multi-day immersion clinics that will finally take you to the next level. From Vail to Vermont, the list includes a resort near you.