By Brad Lane
If you are in the mood for some skiing and snowboarding action this winter, Iowa will help you out. Spread across the state, from the bluffs and elevated outcroppings of the Missouri and Mississippi Rivers to a few across-the-border gems, these seven best ski destinations in Iowa are perfect for you and your family!
Featuring 21 runs, four lifts, and a wide variety of terrain park features, Sundown Mountain of Dubuque is one of Iowa’s hottest spots for skiing. Featuring natural and man-made snow throughout the winter, half the fun of Sundown is flying down the slopes surrounded by friends and family, and the other half is enjoying the same company at one of the two lodges available at Sundown.
Located on the far western border of Iowa, only 15 miles northeast of Omaha, Mt. Crescent Ski Area is well-known as great learning grounds for skiing, and a pretty fun place to hop on a sled. Featuring runs up to 2,400 feet in length, it’s not just beginners that enjoy the constant and manufactured snow of Mt. Crescent. Alongside the winding slopes for skiing and snowboarding, Mt. Crescent also provides a 1,000-foot sledding hill that everyone can enjoy.
Family owned and operated, Seven Oaks Recreation Area of Boone is one of the most popular spots in central Iowa to grab some vertical action. Serving as a great location to ski, snowboard, tube or enjoy a fire in the lodge, Seven Oaks creates their own snow throughout the season, ensuring some freshly groomed tracks on every visit. With guided lessons available, and top-of-the-line rentals on demand, Seven Oaks Recreation proves itself to be one of the best ski resorts in Iowa.
Also located in Des Moines, Sleepy Hollow Sports Park offers awesome recreation throughout the year. Come winter, the elevated surroundings of Sleepy Hollow transform into the perfect sledding and tubing hills. You won’t find much room for skiing and snowboarding at Sleepy Hollow, as this winter destination is exclusively reserved for other downhill options, but with some serious speed and downhill exhilaration, you can find all the winter fun you fancy at Sleepy Hollow Sports Park.
Venturing outside the state of Iowa, and just across the Mississippi River from Sundown Mountain, Chestnut Mountain also offers some downhill skiing options this winter. You can literally see Iowa as you make your way up and down Chestnut Mountain, and this rival ski resort to Sundown also stacks on the slopes, lifts, and comfortable lodges.
The good people over at Mount Kato in Mankato, Minnesota, have been celebrating winter in style for over 40 years, and this across-the-Iowa-border ski resort has figured out a thing or two in that time about hosting a fun winter resort. Just over an hour north of the Iowa border, Mount Kato features long runs, daily grooming, and a community of skiers that welcomes everyone who hits the slopes.
Located just across the Missouri River from Sioux City, Iowa, Great Bear Ski Valley can be found in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and provides some of the biggest ski terrain in the Midwest. Featuring over 220 acres of skiable terrain and 14 different downhill trails, Great Bear Ski Valley is good for those looking to pick up the sport of skiing, practice their skills, or perfect their downhill technique as they glide down the mountain.
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