It’s pretty much spring, which means soft snow, the occasional powder day and plenty of park riding. Spring snowboarding is a time-honored tradition; sunny March, April and sometimes (if we’re lucky) May can often deliver the best days of the season.
Many of the resorts that are synonymous with epic spring conditions have been limited by low snowpack and dismal winters over the last several years. However, the 2016/17 season has proved to be quite the provider. A number of large storms barraged the West Coast in late 2016, covering ranges from California to Utah.
With this abundance of snow and storms continuing to roll in, we are on course to see the best spring conditions in years, and the resorts that were once spring riding destinations will once again be catering to those who love sunny days riding in just a hoodie (or a T-shirt). Here are five stellar options.
Mammoth Mountain, California
Mammoth is back. After years of being affected by drought, the crown jewel of California is looking primed to have one of the best springs in resort history. Even Shaun White (who is a part-owner of the resort) joked at the recent U.S. Open of Snowboarding that he heard Mammoth was planning on “having a halfpipe until August.”
Mammoth is a dream destination for all-mountain riders, as it caters to powder fiends, park enthusiasts, pipe jocks and lovers of good old-fashioned corduroy. The crew that grooms Mammoth’s multiple terrain parks is world-renowned and they will surely have them dialed for spring visitors.
Whistler Blackcomb, British Columbia
The Wildcats are surely thanking the snow gods, as Whistler Blackcomb got annihilated by storms this winter. Whistler not only has a world-class terrain park, but it’s also known to get hit by big spring storms that deliver powder in feet, not inches.
The resort is also a favorite among spring breakers, so if you plan on being there in March or April, you will also be able to indulge in plenty of collegiate antics, not to mention the annual World Ski & Snowboard Festival.
Park City, Utah
Utah is having a phenomenal season and the Wasatch has long been a favorite among spring snowboarders. While many will flock to Brighton and Snowbird when the powder is plentiful, for sunny spring days in the terrain park, head to Park City.
The features and pipe at Park City are always pristine, so roll up with your crew and ride along some of your favorite pros.
The U.S. Open recently rolled through Vail, and the halfpipe and park were superb. Colorado is a spring break favorite and for good reason, as you can often get a few powder, park and pipe laps in before lunch.
Vail has become one of the leaders in performance terrain parks, and with plenty of sunshine, you can catch both air and a sweet goggle tan.
Mount Bachelor, Oregon
While Bend, Oregon, has always been an outdoor paradise, it has really come to prominence in the last few years, as everyone from surf icon Gerry Lopez to backcountry enthusiasts like Austin Smith and Curtis Ciszek call this place home.
Mount Bachelor is jam-packed with wind lips and rolling features, which will appeal to natural-terrain enthusiasts. The ski area does have a park, but make sure you explore the whole resort if you make the journey there this spring.