Hometown Mountain Shoutout: Chestnut Mountain Resort, Galena, IL

Haleigh Hafner |
Chestnut Mountain Resort
Trail Map with lifts and runs highlighted. https://www.chestnutmtn.com/on-the-mountain/winter-activities/trail-map/

When you think of Illinois, an activity such as skiing is probably not the first thing to come to mind. I was born and raised in Illinois, and I still find it hard to believe that a ski resort could exist in a state that is infamous for its cornfields and flatness. However, tucked away in a quaint town of just over 3,000 people, you will find Chestnut Mountain Resort. The resort is located just three hours northwest of Chicago and is known as “The Midwest’s Premier Year-Round Resort.” 

During the winter months, the 220-acre resort becomes a Midwest native’s ultimate playground. With a 475-foot vertical drop, 19 runs, and eight chairlifts offered, skiers and snowboarders from Illinois and surrounding areas have the opportunity to tear up the slopes without leaving the state. 

Winter Amenities

  • Ski and snowboard equipment rental
  • Ski/snowboard lessons for all ages
  • Top-rated terrain park offering over 25 rails
  • Five beginner runs, eleven intermediate runs, three advanced runs
  • Three different freestyle terrain areas
  • Restaurants and affordable lodging
  • Season pass deal
Chestnut Mountain Resort’s premier terrain park https://www.chestnutmtn.com/on-the-mountain/winter-activities/trail-map/

In addition to the amenities listed above, downtown Galena has a wide array of shops, restaurants, and stunning 19th-century architecture. The downtown strip is perfect for family bonding, a girls’ trip, a romantic weekend getaway, or a night out with good friends after a long day out on the slopes. City planners host events year-round: concerts, firework shows, farmer’s markets, and other community activities consistently engage those of all ages.

If you or your family are looking for a fun stay-cation idea this winter, do not overlook the hidden gem known as Chestnut Mountain Resort. Chestnut Mountain satisfies every midwesterner’s craving for a quick trip down the slopes without having to travel halfway across the country to get to bigger ski/snowboard resorts. The resort is perfect for a short weekend ski trip. You can plan your stay through the resort website; trust me, you will not be disappointed.

Downtown Galena
Beautiful image of Downtown Galena on a sunny day (Bell). https://www.visitgalena.org/Blog/walking-tour-of-downtown-galena

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