Covid Safe Snow In USA: Which Ski States Are Best?

Choosing where to ski in America is always tough – so many great choices.

Now to all the usual criteria to weigh up there’s another – the widely different approaches by different states to covid controls. Especially vaccination.

Since Aussies will need to be fully vaccinated to leave the country, that should not be a problem, you think.

Hopefully not for you catching a serious case of the discease itself. That is the key point of getting vaxxed, along with not passing it on to others. Though obviously the more cases there are anywhere the more chances there are of that.

More important is what happens if you need treatment for something like a major ski injury trauma or worse, a car accident. Hospital ICUs full to the brim with covid patients are not where you want to end up.

A few stats show the picture – percentage fully vaccinated vs hospital occupancy.*

Vermont, which has the best skiing in the east, and one of the country’s highest vax rates, 71.30% as at 20 September* has hospital occupancy like this, covid patients just 1/7th of ICU bed occupants

Compare that to Idaho out west, 44.8% fully vaccinated, 90% ICU beds full, 2/3rds of those with covid patients

Colarado sits between them, 61% fully vaccinated, covid patients a bit over 40% of ICU patients

The stats show the effects of vaccination pretty clearly.

As Australia rushes to catch up and open up, it also shows that should not be too hard to manage once we hit the required high vaccination levels. After all, even now our outbreaks in NSW and Victoria are blips by North American standards.

Colorado and California are looking best at the moment.

For the record, the % fully vaccinated of the main ski states are:

  • California 59.72%
  • Colorado 60.97%
  • Montana 48.57%
  • Utah 53.37%
  • Idaho 44.79%
  • Wyoming 40.48%
  • Vermont 71.30%

Canada generally has much higher levels of vaccination, with much less anti-vax sentiment than the USA. But there’s a sizeable difference between BC & Alberta the main ski states. BC hit 79% on September 11, Alberta 71% (people over 12 years) according to the lastest government figures**

BC has been running with a vaxxed card for entry to venues for a while now. After deriding that idea Alberta is switching too.

Hopefully this problem of choice won’t remain academic for us for too much longer with outbound and inbound travel issues sorted in time for winter.

As mentioned last week, Canada remains the safest bet to book a snow holiday too from downunder so far.

Sources: all USA data/graphs John Hopkins University; Canada government covid info