A ski resort is a resort
A resort is a place used for relaxation or recreation, attracting visitors for holidays or vacations. Resorts are places, towns or sometimes commercial establishment operated by a single company....
developed for skiing
Skiing is a recreational activity using skis as equipment for traveling over snow. Skis are used in conjunction with boots that connect to the ski with use of a binding....
and other winter sports. In Europe a ski resort is a town or village in a ski area - a mountainous area, where there are ski trails and supporting services such as hotels and other accommodation, restaurants, equipment rental and a ski lift
The term ski lift generally refers to any transport device that carries skiers up a hill. A ski lift may fall into one of the following three main classes:-Lift systems and networks:...
system. In North America it is more common for ski areas to exist well away from towns, and the term ski resort is used for a destination resort, often purpose-built and self-contained, where skiing is the main activity. The term ski station is also used, particularly in Europe, for a skiing facility which is not located in or near a town or village
Ski areas have marked paths for skiing known as runs, trails or piste
A piste is a marked ski run or path down a mountain for snow skiing, snowboarding, or other mountain sports. The term is European, from the French for trail or track, synonymous with trail, slope, or groomed run in North America....
s. Ski areas typically have one or more chairlift
An elevated passenger ropeway, or chairlift, is a type of aerial lift, which consists of a continuously circulating steel cable loop strung between two end terminals and usually over intermediate towers, carrying a series of chairs...
s for moving skiers rapidly to the top of hills, and to interconnect the various pistes. Rope tows can also be used on short slopes (usually beginner hills or bunny slopes). Larger ski areas may use gondolas
A gondola lift is a type of aerial lift, normally called a cable car, which is supported and propelled by cables from above. It consists of a loop of steel cable that is strung between two stations, sometimes over intermediate supporting towers. The cable is driven by a bullwheel in a terminal,...
or aerial trams
An aerial tramway , cable car , ropeway or aerial tram is a type of aerial lift which uses one or two stationary ropes for support while a third moving rope provides propulsion...
for transportation across longer distances within the ski area.
Some ski resorts offer lodging options on the slopes themselves, with ski-in and ski-out access allowing guests to ski right up to the door. Ski resorts often have other activities, such as snowmobiling
A snowmobile, also known in some places as a snowmachine, or sled,is a land vehicle for winter travel on snow. Designed to be operated on snow and ice, they require no road or trail. Design variations enable some machines to operate in deep snow or forests; most are used on open terrain, including...
Sledding , sledging , sleding or tobogganing is a common activity in wintry areas, similar to sliding, but in a prone or seated position requiring a device or vehicle generically known in the US as a sled or in other countries as a sledge or toboggan...
, horse-drawn sleds
A sled, sledge, or sleigh is a land vehicle with a smooth underside or possessing a separate body supported by two or more smooth, relatively narrow, longitudinal runners that travels by sliding across a surface. Most sleds are used on surfaces with low friction, such as snow or ice. In some cases,...
A dog sled is a sled pulled by one or more sled dogs used to travel over ice and through snow. Numerous types of sleds are used, depending on their function. They can be used for dog sled racing.-History:...
Ice skating is moving on ice by using ice skates. It can be done for a variety of reasons, including leisure, traveling, and various sports. Ice skating occurs both on specially prepared indoor and outdoor tracks, as well as on naturally occurring bodies of frozen water, such as lakes and...
, indoor or outdoor swimming
A swimming pool, swimming bath, wading pool, or simply a pool, is a container filled with water intended for swimming or water-based recreation. There are many standard sizes; the largest is the Olympic-size swimming pool...
, and hottubbing
A hot tub is a large tub or small pool full of heated water and used for soaking, relaxation, massage, or hydrotherapy. In most cases, they have jets for massage purposes. Hot tubs are usually located outdoors, and are often sheltered for protection from the elements, as well as for privacy....
, game rooms, and local forms of entertainment, such as clubs, cinema, theatre and cabarets.
Though skiing is less dangerous than many popular sports (such as bicycling, golf, football, swimming, and weightlifting),
it is widely perceived as being high risk, in part due to significant accident rates as recently as the 1970s. Nevertheless, ski areas usually have at least a basic first aid
First aid is the provision of initial care for an illness or injury. It is usually performed by non-expert, but trained personnel to a sick or injured person until definitive medical treatment can be accessed. Certain self-limiting illnesses or minor injuries may not require further medical care...
facility, and some kind of ski patrol
A Ski Patrol is an organization that provides Emergency Medical and rescue services to skiers and participants of other snow sports, either at a ski area or in a back country setting. Patrollers are trained in Basic or Advanced Life Support to stabilize and transport patients to definitive care,...
service to ensure that injured skiers are rescued. The ski patrol is usually responsible for rule enforcement, marking hazards, closing individual runs (if a sufficient level of hazard exists), and removing (dismissing) dangerous participants from the area.
A ski resort which is also open for summer activities is often referred to as a mountain resort
A mountain resort is a place to holiday or vacation located in a mountainous area. The term includes ski resorts, where winter sports, including skiing, snowboarding, ice climbing and ice skating are practiced, as well as places where summer activities such as mountain biking, mountain boarding,...