New To Ski

9 Best Washington Ski Resorts for Families

by Anthony Schwabe | Updated: October 27th, 2022
family ski - washington

NewToSki.com is reader supported. We may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page. As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases.

Ski resorts make for an awesome winter vacation. For those living in the states, Washington offers some epic ski resorts. But with so many decisions out there, it can be hard to choose which one is the perfect one for your family. Luckily, we’ve got you covered here.

Washington ski resorts may not all be destination resorts but there are still great options. Mt. Baker has some of the best snowfall in the region. 49 Degrees North and Stevens Pass offer some challenging runs. You’ll find some of the most beautiful views in all of Washington at Crystal Mountain, Mission Ridge, and White Pass. For peace, quiet and easy skiing,  Meany Lodge and Badger Mountain will be perfect. 

Our Top Picks

    9. Badger Mountain

    If Meany Lodge represents a quiet vacation location, Badger Mountain takes it a step further. Badger Mountain offers a no-frills skiing experience. Established in 1983, this ski hill located in the Yosemite offers three different lift options to take you across the main runs.

    Badger Mountain is also by far one of if not, the most affordable locations in the whole of North America at a mere $10 per full-day lift ticket. That’s simply unbeatable, right?

    Family Skiing

    As this is a ski hill, the terrain is definitely simplistic, making it very appropriate for less experienced families. Kids will be right at home learning on the relative beginner slopes. 

    Plenty of families have come to the calm slopes of Badger Mountain to teach their young ones the joys of skiing and snowboarding. The quiet, uncrowded atmosphere is great for very young kids too. Just a heads up, there are no rentals available at Badger Mountain so bring your own gear!

    Off the Slopes

    Being in Yosemite Valley means you can take the whole family off the slopes and into one of the best national parks in the whole US. 

    That does come with its own quirks though. Accommodation can be very expensive in the Yosemite, so careful planning to find deals is highly recommended as Badger Mountain is not a destination resort. 

    Fun for Kids

    Exploring and sledding in the Yosemite are two of the coolest activities that you’ll be able to do here, and not really anywhere else on this list. 

    What We Love About Badger Mountain

    • The cheapest lift tickets in North America
    • Excellent terrain for learning 
    • The Yosemite Valley 

    Badger Mountain Stats

    Summit Elevation:8000 ft / 2438 metres
    Skiable terrain: 90 acres
    Lifts:5
    Runs:10

    8. Meany Lodge

    skiresort3

    Meany Lodge is by far the coziest and smallest entry on our list, with a modest 54 acres of skiable terrain. Being the oldest winter sports resort in Washington, families are guaranteed a rustic, cozy trip. 

    Bear in mind, Meany Lodge is a volunteer lodge, meaning you will need to put your back into some work during your stay. 

    Family Skiing

    Meany Lodge is definitely not to be confused with some of the more glamorous resorts. All snowboarding and skiing are done on only 12 or so groomed runs. Luckily, a small resort means quiet slopes. 

    Cross-country skiing is also a huge part of the Meany Lodge experience.  

    Off the Slopes

    There is very little in the way of off-slope activities at Meany Lodge. The whole point of the lodge is to find peace and quiet in the volunteer-driven accommodation. 

    Lodge stays include a Snowcat ride, hot lunch, and snacks, as well as access to skiing, snowboarding, sled-riding, and snowshoeing. 

    Fun for Kids

    There are a few beginners runs for the kids to enjoy at Meany Lodge. However, the most fun for the kids will be found exploring the unique atmosphere Meany Lodge provides.

    What We Love About Meany Lodge

    • Extremely rustic
    • Peace and quiet
    • Unique volunteer experience

    Meany Lodge Stats

    Summit Elevation:3200 ft / 975.36 metres
    Skiable terrain: 54 acres
    Lifts:3
    Runs:32

    7. Stevens Pass 

    Stevens pass
    Photo by Ski Picture Archive at licensed under CC0 1.0

    The fact that Stevens Pass covers two different mountains, it’s no surprise there’s something here for the whole family. All 1,125 skiable acres of Stevens Pass offer great variety, although all of it is quality. 

    Family Skiing

    Stevens Pass has been home to countless family adventurers for a reason. The opportunity for deep powder, excellently groomed runs, and epically steep slopes will give something for anyone to enjoy. 

    Akin to many of Washington’s ski resorts, Stevens Pass shines when it comes to off-piste and the more challenging backcountry terrain. That being said, they do have well-groomed runs and multiple terrain parks. 

    Off the Slopes

    The Cascadian Kitchen is a great spot for the family to grab meals in between or after a big session. There’s also the Foggy Goggle, a full-service pub at one of the lodges. Here you can learn why Washington is known for its beer. 

    Just 30 minutes drive from the resort you’ll find the Bavarian-style town of Leavenworth. Leavenworth provides some great accommodation options. 

    Even better, the whole town is lit up magically over the festive season. Now that’s something the kids will love!

    Fun for Kids

    The Training Grounds terrain park is a great introduction for kids wanting to push their skills to new heights. There’s also the ski school for kids wanting to learn. Kids often go from complete novices to skiing green runs in just a few hours here.

    Again, the town of Leavenworth is an awesome adventure for the whole family. Sledding, Nordic skiing, and even an escape room are all great ways for the kids to have fun off the slopes. 

    What We Love About Stevens Pass

    • Local vibe
    • Nearby Leavenworth
    • Great terrain
    • Excellent ski school

    Stevens Pass Stats

    Summit Elevation:5845 ft / 1781 metres
    Skiable terrain: 1125 acres
    Lifts:12
    Runs:57

    6. Mt. Spokane 

    Mt. Spokane
    Photo by Bjorn at licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

    Found in the Mt. Spokane State Park is the Mt. Spokane Ski and Snowboard Park. This nonprofit ski area has been voted #1 by The Inlander for over a decade now. The park itself boasts 52 runs, all ranging in difficulty, over 1,700 skiable acres. 

    Something that sets Mt. Spokane apart from other areas in this region is the quality of its snow. Here you’ll typically find dry and fluffy snow, a rarity for the region. 

    Family Skiing

    Mt. Spokane offers a wide variety for all riders. There are a couple of steep runs available for the more experienced. They also have the kids covered, with some of the best beginners runs in all of Washington. 

    There’s also a selection of terrain parks built every season for anyone wanting to catch some air. These parks also vary in difficulty, meaning you’ll have a great opportunity to learn the ropes and test your skills all at the same resort. 

    Off the Slopes

    There are a number of day lodging options for folks wanting to take a break from the slopes to grab a bite to eat or just catch a breather. The Vista House is another beautiful option. What could be cooler than taking a break in a historic house from 1933 situated on the summit? 

    Fun for Kids

    Like White Pass, Mt. Spokane offers great tubing for the kids. The Children’s Choice Tubing Hill is open on weekends and is a great way for your kids to spend hours in the snow. 

    There’s also a ski school for all ages. Holiday camps, shredding courses, and private lessons are available for all kids ages four to 17. 

    What We Love About Mt. Spokane

    • Great snow quality
    • Natural trails
    • Multiple terrain parks

    Mt. Spokane Stats

    Summit Elevation:5889 ft / 1795 metres
    Skiable terrain: 1704 acres
    Lifts:8
    Runs:55

    5. White Pass 

    White Pass
    Photo by Ski Picture Archive licensed under CC0 1.0

    Another ski resort near Mt. Rainier, White Pass sports some gorgeous views. White Pass is one of the best options available for families looking for a winter vacation in Washington.  

    Family Skiing

    White Pass has a great selection of terrain for all levels of rider in your family. For the more confident and thrill-seeking, they have some of the awesome steeper stuff on the Great White Express. For the less experienced and kids, check out Paradise Basin. 

    Looking for a more relaxed vibe than skiing? The Nordic Center has you covered. White Pass has just over 11 miles of cross-country skiing, all ranging from beginner to expert level. 

    Off the Slopes

    White Pass is also another unique resort on this list as it offers mid-mountain lodging at The High Camp. For families looking for more than just a day trip, this is an opportunity you shouldn’t pass on. There is also on-mountain dining waiting for you to experience. 

    If you’re planning a trip around February, you have to check out the Winter Carnival. Fun for the whole family. 

    Fun for Kids

    White Pass has some of the best activities for the little ones in comparison to other ski resorts in Washington. From ski school for kids from six to 16 to the White Pass tubing hill, the kids will definitely have fun at this resort. Just a heads up, the tubing hill is only open on weekends.

    They also offer a childcare facility. It’s a good idea to call ahead to see if it will be open during your trip though. 

    What We Love About White Pass

    • A lot of events and activities for the whole family
    • On-mountain lodging
    • Epic Nordic skiing 
    • Childcare service

    White Pass Stats

    Summit Elevation:6550 ft / 1996.44 metres
    Skiable terrain: 1402 acres
    Lifts:8
    Runs:45

    4. Crystal Mountain 

    Crystal Mountain offers some of the best views in the whole of Washington. This beautiful ski resort is also the only one to offer above-treeline terrain in the state. 

    These two reasons are enough by themselves to sell Crystal Mountain, but there’s more! You’ll also find possibly the best views of the iconic Mt. Rainier. 

    Family Skiing

    Skiing at Crystal Moutain is very diverse and offers a huge amount of variety for the whole family across roughly 2,600 skiable acres. Pretty typical for Washington resorts, the skiing is a little better suited for the more intermediate to advanced skiers in the family. 

    Another huge perk of Crystal Mountain is how easy it is to get to the resort from the hustle and bustle of nearby Seattle. Just load the kids up for an awesome day out. 

    Off the Slopes

    Crystal Mountain is a bit more of a day trip location, so families will most likely want to spend the majority of their time on the slopes. There are a few activities that are great ways to pass the time though, as well as some on-mountain lodging options. 

    While not technically off the slopes, Crystal Mountain has a number of on-mountain dining experiences the family will love. 

    Fun for Kids

    As with a lot of the Washington state ski resorts where it’s all about skiing, Crystal Mountain is the same. Gondola rides and night skiing are two of the cooler activities the kids will enjoy during their time here. 

    What We Love About Crystal Mountain

    • The only above-treeline terrain in Washington
    • Excellent lifts
    • Beautiful views
    • Huge amounts of good snow

    Crystal Mountain Stats

    Summit Elevation:7012 ft / 2137 metres
    Skiable terrain: 2600 acres
    Lifts:11
    Runs:85

    3. Mission Ridge 

    skiresort6

    One of the sunniest ski resorts out there, Mission Ridge can be found 12 miles from Wenatchee, Washington. 

    Mission Ridge boasts 300 days of sunshine over a beautiful basin that stretches 2,000 acres across the eastern slopes of the Cascade Mountains. If overcast days aren’t a family favorite, Mission Ridge is the solution. Just be sure to bring your goggles!

    Family Skiing

    The majority of the runs are geared more towards intermediate skiers, but the true Mission Ridge experience is the off-piste terrain. People often claim it to be the best skiing in all of Washington. 

    This is definitely a result of being able to enjoy uncrowded slopes in the glorious sunshine. This is the spot for bluebird skiers! What’s better than skiing under the clear blue sky? Nothing, that’s what. 

    Not only that, but Mission Ridge has some of the driest powder in the state.

    Off the Slopes

    Mission Ridge does fall slightly in comparison to our other entries in the off-slope department. For folks wanting anything to do other than ski, you’ll have to make the 12-mile trip into Wenatchee. 

    Here you’ll find several restaurants, the Pybus Public Market, and even a movie theatre. The Pybus Public Market is an excellent choice for families wanting a taste of the local farm goods and artisanal food of the area.

    Fun for Kids

    Mission Ridge offers a selection of kids’ ski and snowboard classes. From their Flyers program geared towards skiers ages three to five and snowboarders four to five to their regular classes for children ages six to 12.

    The kids will love being able to learn to ski or snowboard while making friends. 

    What We Love About Mission Ridge

    • Beautiful sunshine and panoramic views
    • Epic dry powder
    • Uncrowded slopes
    • Just 12 miles from the town of Wenatchee

    Mission Ridge Stats

    Summit Elevation:6820 ft / 2079 metres
    Skiable terrain: 2000 acres
    Lifts:6
    Runs:53

    2. 49 Degrees North Mountain Resort 

    skiresort7

    49° North Mountain Resort has 2,300 acres of skiable terrain, featuring 50 different runs. All of which have a great deal of variety in terms of difficulty.

    Family Skiing

    The majority of the runs are suited to more intermediate to advanced skiers. The resort features several runs in all difficulties, from green to double Black Diamond. All of these runs are accessible from the single lift at the resort. 

    The kids will be able to have fun on the groomed green runs, while the more adventurous can tackle the treeline blue and Black Diamond runs. 

    Off the Slopes

    There are several cafes, as well as a bar & grill for your family to get some great food in between runs. You can also treat your family to weekly events like live music and Saturday night skiing

    Snowshoeing and cross-country skiing are also very popular at 49 Degrees North.

    Fun for Kids

    There’s an awesome ski school at 49 Degrees North that offers lessons for all ages from as little as two years old. How cute? 

    What’s better, the FAST Program is a great way for kids to learn the ropes of alpine racing. This school is for kids five and up. 

    What We Love About 49 Degrees North Mountain Resort

    • Great treeline skiing
    • Awesome ski and race school
    • Weekly events

    49 Degrees North Mountain Resort Area Stats

    Summit Elevation:5774 ft / 1760 metres
    Skiable terrain: 2325 acres
    Lifts:7
    Runs:89

    1. Mt. Baker Ski Area 

    mt baker
    Photo by U.S. Forest Service- Pacific Northwest Region At licensed under Public Domain Mark 1.0

    Located just south of the Canadian border is Mt. Baker. This resort has one of the best reputations for immense snowfall, with a whopping 57 feet every season. 

    You’ll have a hard time finding a ski resort in the US that can compare to the volume of snow on a powder day. Naturally, this means there are a lot of people wanting to have a go on the slopes here. 

    Family Skiing

    Skiing at Mt. Baker is definitely geared more toward families with competent skiers and snowboarders. There are a number of groomed runs for the less experienced, but a lot of the enjoyment at Mt. Baker is found on their more extreme terrain, the in-bounds, and backcountry. 

    Mt. Baker is no stranger to heavy snowfall, combined with the rugged terrain, it makes for great skiing for the more advanced riders. 

    Expect quite a crowd on weekends following heavy snowfall. Otherwise, Mt. Baker is pretty uncrowded, making it a good option for families wanting to ski together. 

    Off the Slopes

    Mt. Baker also boasts some great and unique off-slope activities. Wining and dining are one of the best ways to enjoy yourselves after a long day of skiing. For the parents, Washington offers some of the best beers in the country. 

    There is also a selection of lodging options available just outside the resort. Glacier and Maple Falls provide several good options in the ways of bed and breakfasts and cabins. For those wanting a bit more of a luxury feel, Bellingham has many hotels for you to choose from. 

    Fun for Kids

    This is definitely a resort that is ski-focused. They don’t offer many activities for the kids, besides private ski lessons for children between three and four years old. Older kids are also able to attend group ski lessons. It’s also worth mentioning they don’t have childcare facilities. Parents with very young kids, be warned.

    What We Love About Mt. Baker

    • Very heavy snowfall 
    • Excellent craft beer
    • Relatively uncrowded
    • Good expert terrain

    Mt. Baker Ski Area Stats

    Summit Elevation:5000 ft / 1524 metres
    Skiable terrain: 1000 acres
    Lifts:10
    Runs:38

    Why Choose Washington for Skiing

    The numerous ski resorts in Washington have everything a family will need to have a great ski and snowboard session. From licensed daycare services that care for young children, trails that cater to all degrees of skill, ski and snowboard schools, and other activities to keep both the parents and the children engaged throughout the day. Round it out with a tasty dinner and sleep the fatigue away comfortably before rising up on a new day, energized and eager for a new adventure with the whole family.

    Get Weekly Ski Tips:

    Please wait...

    Welcome aboard, check your email.


    How did we order this list?

    To help rank our top selection of ski resorts for this list we compared the following ranking factors:

    👨‍👩‍👦 Ranking Factor📈 Power to affect Rank
    Amount of Beginner Trails (Mi) 4x
    Amount of Skiing Area (Mi) 3x
    Cost of two adult tickets + child ticket1x
    How many magic carpet lifts1x

    We gave each factor its own weighting depending on how important we feel it is for family fun across all ages. For example, a resort with more beginner trails is higher ranked than a resort with a lower-priced family ticket – with all else being equal. That’s because while cost is a factor, it’s not a primary one. We may also use our editorial judgment to remove or add resorts that we believe should make the list.

    When taking all of this into account, it gives us our awesome list above. We hope it was helpful in planning your next family ski vacation.


    View Map

    Best Ski Resorts for Families In Washington

    About Us

    NewToSki.com is where over 1 million people a year come to learn more about skiing. I share everything I wish someone had told me when I was learning to ski. My name is Simon & I've been skiing since 2005. This winter, our family is taking a 3-month camper ski trip across the Alps. If you enjoy our articles, please join the free email club. We'd love to have you.
    As seen in Yahoo, HowStuffWorks, MSN.

    Daily Ski Deals

    Obermeyer

    Obermeyer Force Snow Pants – Men’s

    $164.25

    save 25%

    $219.00

    rei.com
    OutdoorMaster

    PRO Snow Goggles

    $45.13

    save 26%

    $60.99

    outdoormaster.com
    OutdoorMaster

    Wireless Bluetooth 5.0 Helmet Drop-in Headphones

    Check Price

    Amazon.com

    amazon.com

    Good To Know: We earn a commission if you click the product links above and make a purchase. You’ll never pay more & you’ll fund our free ski guides on newtoski.com. Win-Win!