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Spring Fever

Ski, eat, party, sleep, repeat—nearby hot spots where you can play while the powder is still fresh

Photograph: istockphoto.com©dell640

Just when the season’s at its peak, some skiers hang up their boots until next year. But those who’ve tried spring skiing know that carving turns on corduroy can be even more fun when you’re wearing a t-shirt or light layers. It’s also a great experience for kids who don’t like dealing with frigid temps. Mountains that stay open through April and even early May cater to the late-season crowd with festivals and special events. Here’s where you can hit the slopes.

1. Stowe  

As Vermont’s highest mountain, this northern ski area is just hitting its prime in March—the resort receives an average of 333 inches of snow each winter and one third of that falls during this month. You can break out the stretch pants and straight skis during 80's weekend on March 14 through 16, a celebration of the decade’s music, lifestyle and skiing fashion. For a gourmet experience that takes après-ski to new heights, reserve a spot at a Cliff House Summit Series dinner, scheduled for March 15 and 22. You ride a special gondola to the top, where you’re treated to a multicourse dinner. In April, there’s even an Easter egg hunt on the mountain.

2. Sunday River

Up in western Maine, Sunday River has top-notch snow coverage and—after months of snowmaking—excellent conditions through March and April across all eight of its mountain peaks. In spring, even the après-ski crowd hangs outdoors, with people on decks in Adirondack chairs. On March 30, warm up with the Eat the Heat Chili Cook-Off and Firefighter’s Race. You can ski in your Hawaiian shirt during the annual Parrothead Festival, April 4 through 6, where the festivities include a Margarita Mix-Off, and Jimmy Buffet cover bands.

3. The Hermitage Club

Here’s a new way to experience luxe spring skiing without the crowds. This private four-season club in West Dover, Vermont, is a members-only property founded by Jim Barnes, who’s from Connecticut. Hermitage’s slopes stay covered in white late into the season thanks to its arsenal of snowmaking and grooming equipment. In addition to downhill skiing and instruction on demand, the Club at Haystack Mountain offers a well-rounded experience with cross-country skiing, tubing, snowmobiling, ice skating and horse-drawn sleigh rides, as well as a four-star country inn, fine dining with a national renowned wine cellar and an upscale pub.

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