Smugglers' Notch Resort

Joretta Wong
SnowPak Local Insider
Joretta Wong
Save up to 38% when you book a Smugglers' Notch Resort package! View Smugglers' Notch Resort packages
  • Great value lift ticket given size of terrain
  • Variety of trails and glades across three mountains
  • Great ski school for kids and adults
  • Variety of ski-in/ski-out condos
  • Family-friendly ski resort
  • Slow and outdated lifts
  • The return from Madonna or Sterling Mountain back to the Village Center can be a trek if you don't take the shuttle
  • Far from New York City (6 hours) and Boston (4 hours)
  • Very limited nightlife
  • Can get quite cold

One of the top ski resorts in Vermont, Smugglers' Notch has a well-earned reputation for its family-friendliness. Not only does it have one of the best ski schools on the East Coast, their lift ticket prices are relatively inexpensive considering its sizeable terrain spread across three mountains. With different family activities and events on offer every night, it's no wonder why this resort has become a favorite!

17/18 Historical Snowfall

Best month to go


February is the best time to visit Smugglers' Notch Resort as there will be enough snowfall and it’s cold enough to retain the great conditions.


Burlington International Airport


Smuggler's Notch (1 hour)

Village East Community/Village West Community (Walk)

  • Base of Morse Mountain
  • Easy walk to Village Center amenities and dining
  • Wide range of condos and townhouses

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Highlands Hill Community (Walk)

  • Located upper mountain on Morse Mountain in Morse Highlands area
  • Close to Morse Highlands lift
  • Far from Village Center, shuttle required

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West Hill Community (Walk)

  • Situated mid-way up Morse Mountain
  • Limited amenities
  • Walk or short shuttle to Village Center

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North Hill Community (0.50 mi)

  • Short walk to Smuggs Central
  • Far from Village Center and slopes, shuttle required
  • Newest Community at Smuggler's Notch

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For beginners

Morse Mountain is for beginners. All the beginner runs are here plus there are only two intermediate and one advanced trail so there's little chance of more experienced skiers speeding past. There are a variety of greens here but our favorite would have to be the Magic Learning Trail; a gentle slope with the perfect mellow pitch so beginners won't lose control.

For intermediates

There's a wide range of blue runs on Madonna Mountain and Sterling Mountain. From wide groomers to glades and even steep windy trails, intermediates will have plenty to shred. Our top pick for intermediates is Upper Chilcoot from the summit of Madonna Mountain. The views from the top are impeccable and you can even enjoy them as you head down this thrilling run!

For experts

Madonna Mountain and Sterling Mountain serve up a variety of steeps, moguls, and glades for advanced skiers and snowboarders to enjoy along with their 6 terrain parks! Doc Dempsey's glades offer quite a challenge for those looking to ski and ride between trees while Upper FIS is another favorite of ours and is where you'll find stashes of powder!

Find freshies

The best spot to find freshies is in the glades on Madonna Mountain and Sterling Mountain. They don't get tracked out quickly after a storm making them an ideal place to ride! Just be warned that these trails don't usually open if snow is lacking.

Ditch the crowds

The Village Lift and Village area at the base of Morse Mountain tend to have the most crowds and often sees the longest lift queues. Intermediate and advanced skiers and snowboards can avoid the crowds by staying on Sterling Mountain or Madonna Mountain until they're ready to call it a day.

Non skiers

Non-skiers will find plenty to keep them entertained at Smugglers' Notch. There's everything from zip line canopy tours to snowmobiling tours and even arts and craft workshops. For those just wanting to relax, there are hot tubs, massages or yoga classes!


Smugglers' Notch is a fantastic family-friendly resort with wide trails for the whole family to ski together on. At night, the resort also offers a range of family activities and events such as family karaoke, airboard family fun races, and character dance parties.

Smugglers' Notch Resort vs
Smugglers' Notch ResortJay Peak
beginner19 %20 %
intermediate50 %40 %
advanced25 %40 %
expert6 %-
total runs78 78
ski area1,000ac 385ac
summit elevation3,639ft 3,968ft
total lifts8 9
child lift ticketFree Free
adult lift ticket$76 $64
back country
value for money
average total snowfall162″ 226″
Save up to 38% when you book a Smugglers' Notch Resort package! View Smugglers' Notch Resort packages

Smugglers' Notch Resort Reviews

Good 3.9 / 5
based on 10 reviews

How well the resort caters for beginner skiers / boarders


How well the resort caters for intermediate skiers / boarders?


How well the resort caters for advanced skiers / boarders


How accessible and convenient it is to get to this resort from a major destination


Quality of the off-piste terrain


Overall value for money of the resort

Value for money

Quality of lifts, lift speed and lift layout in the resort


Quantity and quality of the snow


How uncrowded is the resort


Après ski and dining options


Services and facilities e.g. child care, tubing, health care, equipment hire


How family friendly is this resort?

Family Friendliness
Fabulous!4.3 / 5May 09, 2018
Gregory D. Gregory D.
advanced skier
A great family friendly mountain with terrain for new skiiers/riders and experts. They have multiple peaks with AMAZING glades. The only downside is the old out dated slow lifts. But the waterpark is super cool... More
Very Good!4 / 5May 02, 2018
Erik F. Erik F.
expert skier
Great fun, nice steeps, better glades, plenty of natural beauty but oh those lifts..... yikes. Best mountain with the worst lifts. Taking the low speed undetatchable doubles up 2000 vert on a freezing windy January day ain't no joke.... More
Fabulous!4.3 / 5Apr 24, 2018
Michael F. Michael F.
advanced skier
Have been going to Smuggs, for 18 years. Kids learned how to ski there, when they were 2. Been bringing up their friends, also. Terrain for everyone,, Great for beginners, Great for Advanced Great glades Never crowded Always something to do, with the family... More
Average!3.5 / 5Nov 24, 2017
DJDaniel J.
expert snowboarder
Smuggs is my favorite in VT and maybe in the east as a whole. If you want to be sure they allow a free half hour in the morning as a "try before you buy" opportunity. No other resort offers that! Lots of steep stuff and awesome glades. Great snow and amazing snow on powder days. You will have a blast!... More
Superb!5 / 5Oct 07, 2017
KAKyle A.
Skiing the trees and steeps has never been so fun! The two chair lifts keep the mountain uncrowded and service is top "Notch" hehe. They have a whole mountain for beginners and if you're an expert try the triple black diamond, "The Black Hole"
Superb!5 / 5Feb 10, 2012
Great kids program. We vacationed the last week of March and still had great conditions. Very friendly family ski resort
Very Good!4 / 5Dec 30, 2011
it was a high school field trip and it was so great that i will definitely return
Very Good!4 / 5Dec 01, 2011
Smugg's is the best w/ kids in the business. The skiing is surprisingly good too!
Poor!1 / 5Mar 29, 2010
Old and outdated.
Very Good!4 / 5Feb 16, 2008
We have 4 skiers - 3 learning & 1 non-skier; so keeping the whole family entertained and in appropriate lessons was key. Smuggs covered all the bases for us.

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