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Afton Alps

Just an hour outside the Twin Cities is Afton Alps, a recent addition to Vail Resorts and a family friendly ski resort since 1963. Since this time, people from Minnesota have cherished their home ski resort as a day trip vacation and it has grown to the largest ski resort near a major city in the Midwest.

The Backdrop—St. Croix River Valley

With 300 skiable acres and 48 trails, the Afton Alps Recreation Area is set in the St. Croix River Valley and is often described as quaint and beautiful. While on the mountain, skiers and snowboarders enjoy night skiing and riding, tubing, terrain park features, and 100 percent snowmaking ability ensuring a full ski season. Afton Alps has been a favorite day trip destination for folks and has even bred athletes like professional snowboarder Brennen Swanson. With the acquisition from Vail Resorts, the terrain and resort will see 10 million dollars’ worth of expansion and care, attracting even more athletes and families alike. Currently, there are four base areas, 18 lifts that lead the athletes up to trails that are ranked 20 percent beginner, 60 percent intermediate, and 20 percent advanced.

In addition to more trails, terrain parks, and facilities, Afton Alps is now a part of the Vail Epic Pass. Pass holders have access to 11 mountains total throughout the United States and can use their pass to record online their distance and speed while on the mountains. It’s a very cool feature that Epic Pass holders have grown to love.

Off the Slopes

The town of Hastings is a smaller town with about 10 hotels, a quaint downtown area with restaurants and shopping, all located on the banks of three converging rivers. Nationally known for its Victorian architecture, Hastings has 63 buildings (33 commercial buildings, 28 private homes, and two churches) that are a part of the historical national register. You can tour these buildings and feel at home when you visit the area. Because of its size, however, this resort truly is known as a place people travel to ski for a day or two, and most do not stay much longer.

Getting Here

Fly into the Twin Cities and take Hwy. 94 to 95. Take a right and turn left on County 20 to the ski resort area.

Ski Vacation Discounts

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Photo Courtesy of Afton Alps Recreation Area