A small Wisconsin resort less than 70 miles from both Chicago and Milwaukee, Wilmot Mountain has marketed itself as the “Matterhorn of the Midwest” since it opened in 1938.
Wilmot Mountain caters to families and beginners with its excellent ski-and-snowboard school and 20-lane tubing facility. After it was purchased by Vail Resorts in 2016, Wilmot Mountain received a $13 million face-lift that included a new base lodge, a covered conveyor lift and the expansion of two terrain parks.
An Epic Pass destination, Wilmot Mountain has a summit elevation of 960 feet, with a vertical drop of 190 feet. The skiable terrain is 120 acres, accessed by 23 runs, the longest of which is 2,500 feet. Wilmot Mountain has 11 chairlifts with a lift capacity of 12,500 people an hour. The mountain gets about 48 inches of snowfall annually, and snowmaking covers 100 percent of the terrain here. Night skiing is offered until 10pm.
Wilmot Mountain’s ski & snowboard School offers classes for all skill levels (adults can participate, too). Private lessons can also be booked for one hour, three hours or a full day. There is an on-site ski and snowboard rental shop that offers package rentals. There is slopeside dining at the resort, but no on-site lodging. Accommodation options can be found in nearby towns like Kenosha, Lake Geneva and Antioch.
Wilmot Mountain’s season generally begins in early December and wraps up around mid-March. The best snowfall usually occurs in mid-February. You’ll find the trails less crowded, not to mention better hotel rates, if you avoid visiting over weekends and holidays.
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The closest lodging to Wilmot Mountain is about 15 minutes away in Antioch, Illinois, where guests have a number of options, including the Dragonfly Bed and Breakfast. The 1885 Victorian property features pine floors and tin ceilings, and guests are treated to a full homemade breakfast each morning and refreshments in the afternoon.
About 30 minutes from Wilmot Mountain, The Cove of Lake Geneva in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, has spacious rooms, a fitness center and an indoor pool and hot tub.
Right off Interstate 94 in Kenosha, Wisconsin, about 40 minutes from the ski resort, the Best Western Executive Inn also has an indoor pool and a fitness center, while the on-site bar and lounge soothes post-ski hunger with dinner and bar snacks.
Wilmot Mountain has two slope-side restaurants. Walt’s Tavern has windows looking out to the ski hill and menu items like Ahi tuna poke bowls, homemade meatloaf, burgers and sandwiches, while the bar offers cocktails, beer and wine. The Ski Hill Grill is a quick-service food court with made-from-scratch pizza, deep-fried cheese curds and a large grab-and-go selection.
The closest major airport to Wilmot Mountain is the General Mitchell International Airport in Milwaukee, about 45 miles from the resort. However, you may more reasonably priced flights if you’re willing to fly into Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport in Chicago – about 60 miles from the ski area – instead.
By car, Wilmot Mountain is about an hour and 20 minutes from Chicago and 55 minutes from Milwaukee. There are shuttle services and car rentals available at both airports. Once at Wilmot Mountain, there is limited taxi service and public transportation – guests may want to consider renting a car for more flexibility.