Bariloche Ski Resort
Bariloche is a picturesque town in Patagonia close to South America's largest ski area - Cerro Catedral or Mount Catedral. Advanced high-speed chairs, apres ski bars, ski shops and Swiss-style chalet buildings give the resort a European flavour.
Bariloche, or San Carlos de Bariloche to give it it’s full name, is a large town and an all year round holiday resort in a classically beautiful ‘lakes and mountains’ setting, that is sometimes referred to as Argentina’s Little Switzerland.
Cerro Catedral (“Mount Catedral” in English) is the name of the main ski area. It is less than 20km from Bariloche so it’s often referred to as Bariloche Ski Resort. It has a good range of runs for all ability levels and stretches across 1200 hectares (2964 acres), the largest lift served terrain in all of South America. Half of the area is ungroomed ‘off-piste’ skiing for advanced skiers and freeriders, with steep chutes and backcountry open bowls. As well as staying in Bariloche, there is also accommodation at a small village near the lifts.
The ski area has a vertical of over 1000m (3300 feet), which is more than many famous American ski resorts, and it has nearly 40 ski lifts. There are some old slow ones, but there are modern high-speed, hifg-capacity chairlifts comparable to what you would find in the Alps or the Rockies, and overall you’re unlikely to find a better lift system in any ski resort in South America.
The top of the Cerro Catedral ski area gets a decent amount of snow – about 6 metres. Lower down snow quality can be patchy.
Although Cerro Catedral is the main ski area, skiers and boarders staying in Bariloche can also reach Cerro Bayo, Perito Moreno and Cerro Chapelco. There is also cat-skiing and heliskiing nearby.