Top 10 Ski Resorts Near Chicago For Snowy Adventure

By Meghana Agashe on Dec 08, 2017
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Hello peeps, as you can see, winter is finally here! (For those who didn’t get the Game of Thrones reference, never mind :P) With winter, come the exciting prospects of ice skating, skiing and snowboarding. Searching for a ski-worthy slope in Illinois can be a bit taxing considering this state is the second flattest state in the country. Surprisingly, despite being a part of this flat state, Chicago is blessed with plenty of hills that have some unexpectedly good ski and snowboard options. Check out this list of best ski resorts near Chicago to know more!

1. Alpine Valley Resort - One of the Best Places to Ski in Wisconsin

A marvelously adventurous ski resort, the Alpine Valley Resort is one of the best places to ski in Wisconsin. Boasting of three high-speed quads and five Wonder Carpets, this resort beckons the skiers for an exciting time. With a longest run is 2,500 feet and a vertical drop is 388 feet, the Alpine Valley Resort is surely not for the faint-hearted!

This season, the resort has also launched a new learning-to-ski area, that’s based on the principle of “terrain-based learning.” Providing training on gentle slopes which helps the skiers to develop the methods of turning and stopping, the Alpine Valley Resort is best for novice skiers. Also offering top-notch ski-lodging services, you can be assured of a complete electrifying vacation package when you head to this place.

Distance from Chicago- 90 miles; 1.45-hour drive Northwest in Elkhorn, WI

Season Dates- December to February

2. Mount Bohemia- Challenging Slopes for Experts


The picturesque Mount Bohemia Ski Resort is where you will find some of the state’s longest runs with 900-foot vertical drops and sharp turns. Considered to be one of the best Midwest Ski Resorts, Mount Bohemia is one of this area’s hidden gems, offering 500 acres of wild, ungroomed terrain. A trip to this ski resort also bequeaths you with an exciting prospect of skiing down the Bad Seed run built over a prehistoric volcano!

Flaunting 94 expert runs, almost all of which are rated black diamond or above, Mount Bohemia Ski Resort is the best place for seasoned skiers and experts. A perfect spot to attempt cliff jumps, a trip to this resort has to be on your list of things to do near Chicago in winter if you are an adrenaline junkie.

Distance from Chicago- 455 miles; 8-hour drive North in Grant, MI

Season Dates- December to July

3. Granite Peak Ski Area - Wisconsin’s Highest Vertical Drop

PC: Wikimedia Commons

Nestling in the Rib Mountain State Park, the Granite Peak Ski Area boasts of Wisconsin’s highest vertical drop. Located a bit farther from Chicago than the other ski resorts, the Granite Peak Ski Area is spread over 400 acres and has 74 trails served by seven lifts. The whopping 700-foot vertical descent however, is worth the extra distance!

Not an expert at skiing and feel like indulging in other adventure sports? Don’t worry, the Granite Peak Ski Area has got you covered! With 15 jumps, 40 jibs, rollers, rails and spines, this ski resort is also ideal for snowboarding! The ample number of ‘ski-and-stay’ packages and the affordable season passes make Granite Peak Ski Area one of the cheapest ski resorts near Chicago.

Distance from Chicago- 275 miles from Chicago, 3605 N. Mountain Road, Wausau, Wis.

Season Dates- Mid-November to Early April

4. Chestnut Mountain Resort- An Impressive Collection of Rolling Hills

Consisting of a 120-room resort situated on the towering peak of the Chestnut Mountain, the Chestnut Mountain Resort is one of the best skiing spots near Chicago. Offering breathtaking views of the Mississippi River, this ski resort entices thrill-seekers with its 475-foot vertical drop which runs 3,500 feet through 19 slopes.

From bunny slopes to steep ones, the Chestnut Mountain Resort is suitable for skiers of all levels of expertise. With an impressive collection of rolling hills, this ski resort is also famous for snowboarding. Head over to this place for an exciting, snowy time!

Distance from Chicago- 162 miles; 3-hour drive West in Galena, IL

Season Dates- December to April

5. Devil’s Head- A Blend of Romance and Adventure


Featuring a 500-foot vertical drop, 30 trails, 9 lifts, and 2 conveyor belts for novices, Devil’s Head Resort is an exhilarating place to be at. The charming resort is located atop one of the highest mountains in Wisconsin, thus making it one of the most romantic ski resorts near Chicago. Another notable aspect of this resort is the huge variety of ski rental gear which is made available to the visitors at very affordable prices.

The ski trails are groomed twice a day without fail, thus ensuring that you have a smooth ride. The area of the ski resort is divided into three segments - 30 percent for beginners, 40 percent for intermediates and 30 percent for advanced skiers and snowboarders. So, people with all levels of expertise can have a magnificent and a fun-filled time indulging in snow sports at this resort!

Distance from Chicago- 185 miles from Chicago, S6330 Bluff Road, Merrimac, Wis.

Season Dates- December to April

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6. Villa Olivia- Exciting Snowboarding and Skiing Prospects

Bequeathing visitors with 7 downhill runs, the Villa Olivia is one of the best ski resorts near Chicago. A factor which makes this ski resort so popular among tourists is the fact that they have the facility of a chairlift even to the top of its longest trails.

Along with splendid skiing prospects, the tubing and snowboarding opportunities tempt tourists to visit the Villa Olivia Ski Resort. This tiny hidden gem in Illinois is perfect for weekend getaways in Chicago during winters!

Distance from Chicago- 40 miles from downtown Chicago

Season Dates- December and January

7. Raging Buffalo Snowboard Ski Park- A Kid-friendly Ski Resort Near Chicago

PC: Wikimedia Commons

Open to both skiers and snowboarders, Raging Buffalo Snowboard Ski Park presents an interesting mix of unique mountain challenges to visitors. With excellent instructors, this ski park is perfect for those who are new to snow sports. The 150-foot vertical drop with 5 runs changes throughout the skiing season, thus making sure that the visitors have a huge variety of slopes to choose from!

With a beginner hill consisting of a “magic carpet,” a slanted moving sidewalk, this ski resort is ideal for families with children, thus making it one of the most kid-friendly ski resorts near Chicago. Since this resort is located very close to the suburbs, it is always packed with visitors; so, it is better to make prior reservations when visiting this place!

Distance from Chicago- 45 miles from downtown Chicago

Season Dates- November End to March

8. Crystal Mountain- A Comprehensive Ski Resort

Touted to be one of the best ski resorts in Midwest, the Crystal Mountain Ski Resort is one all-inclusive place! This Alpine Ski Area in the Cascade Range of Washington offers you a horde of exhilarating ski runs which are sure to leave you pumped up and breathless at the same time!

58 ski slopes, 8 lifts, 4 terrain parks, a snow-sports school and daily NASTAR racing are some of the exciting prospects which await you at the Crystal Mountain. In addition to the skiing opportunities, the accommodation options too are state-of-the-art. From luxury suites and hotel rooms to condos and resort homes, you can pick from a huge plethora of choices!

Distance from Chicago- 306 miles from Chicago Downtown

Season Dates- November to April

9. Bittersweet Ski Resort- Plethora of Adventurous Opportunities

Ideal for skiers of intermediate level of expertise, the Bittersweet Ski Resort boasts of 20 runs and 7 chairlifts. You can sharpen your skiing skills at the ski school housed in this resort and make the use of the Wonder Carpet lift on the beginner hill to take you to the top of the slopes.

The 350 feet vertical is divided into trails of varying difficulty levels. So, from relatively easy to black diamond slopes, Bittersweet Ski Resort provides you with phenomenal terrains to have an adventurous time!

Distance from Chicago- 151 miles from Chicago

Season Dates- December to March

10.Swiss Valley Ski and Snowboard Area- A Quintessential Ski Park

One of the oldest and the most popular ski resorts near Chicago, the Swiss Valley Ski and Snowboard Area is a favorite among locals and tourists alike. Featuring 11 slopes and a 225-foot vertical drop, this resort promises you a snow-and-adventure filled escapade!

Offering tabletops, high spines, grind rails and pyramids for skiers, the Swiss Valley Ski and Snowboard Area is perfect for all the stuntmen out there! The super-friendly staff, the huge variety of good condition rental equipment and the wonderful fireside lounge enhance the charm of this area. The affordable season pass and the ample number of group deals which are up for grabs make this resort one of the cheapest ski resorts near Chicago.

Distance from Chicago- 126 miles from Chicago

Season Dates- December to February

Featuring such astounding choice of snowy slopes, Chicago in winters is a paradise for skiers. Head over to these magnificent ski resorts near Chicago for an exciting time

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