Bretton Woods is the largest ski area in New Hampshire and regularly is among the top ten ski resorts in the East. It is considered part of the Omni Mount Washington Resort and is located just across SR302. Bretton Woods spans 464 acres, making it one of the largest resorts in New Hampshire. The vertical at Bretton is 1500 feet, with the summit resting at 3100 feet and base lodge at 1600 feet. Annual average snowfall for the area evens out at 200 inches (5.1 meters) annually. For those years of lean snow, Bretton has snowmaking coverage over 92 percent of its trails.
The Lifts and the Runs
The lift system at Bretton has ten total lifts, which can ferry over 14,000 skiers up the mountain per hour. There are four high-speed quads, one standard quad, a triple, a double, and three surface lifts. There are three peaks to Bretton Woods, Mt. Stickney, Mt. Rosebrook, and West Mountain. Across these three mountains, there are 102 named trails with a difficulty mix that is 25 percent novice, 29 percent intermediate, and 46 percent expert.
If you’re new to skiing, Bretton Woods has one of the best ski schools on the East Coast. A dedicated learning center will get you comfortable on your skis and send you out to tackle the novice rated trails found at the end of the B Chair Double or the groomed steep Bigger Ben at the drop off point of the Bethlehem Express chair. When you’re ready to tackle something bigger, hit the Zephyr high-speed and take Avalon down the mountain.
Intermediate skiers will find trails to romp on across all three peaks Mt Stickney is almost exclusively filled with blue trails and Rosebrook has some great groomed steeps with just enough variation to challenge you as you’re whipping down the mountain. West has one of the best intermediate steeps in New Hampshire, the Oscar Barron’s. With an exhilarating start, this trail is fun from beginning to end.
With nearly half the named trails marked as single or double black diamond, Bretton Woods has a lot to offer the advanced and expert skier. A crazy amount of glade skiing, from Mount Stickney to the Rosebrook glades are there to satisfy that particular itch. On West Mountain, there are more glades, steeps, and bumpy rolling trails to satisfy even the most jaded skier. Of course, every expert skier at Bretton has to take Bode’s Run, named for the famous champion skier Bode Miller.
The Rest of the Story
If you’re looking for a resort with apres-ski activities, Bretton has you covered. There is a tax-free outlet only thirty minutes away for shopping. If drinks and dining are your pleasure, there is access to over twenty different restaurants, ranging from rowdy pubs to elegant multi-course meals. There is live music featured at The Cave in the Mount Washington Hotel. If you’re looking for locals and great stories, hit the Slopeside or Fabyans as day lifts close and the night skiers start to come out of the woodwork. Bretton is also a great place for families. There is daycare available, a winter playground, and if alpine isn’t your thing, over 100 kilometers of Nordic track. No matter what your ability level, you’ll have a blast at Bretton.