I'm in northern/central Vermont, in the heart of "ski country" which is the Lamoille County area: think Stowe and Smuggler's Notch. For perspective, we just drove an hour "south-ish" and looked at property in the Vershire region...
Vermont pretty much has it all: prime ag lands up by the Canadian border (and the farm infrastructure to support them), hills, mountains, valley farm land in the Champlain Valley basin... and a state committed to keeping as much of its ag land open as possible. So, fresh from my foray into the less developed part of the state let me compare and contrast:
It is hellishly (sorry if I'm not allowed to use that word but it is) expensive to purchase property of any size in a resort community. However... resort communities have a steady job base. They tend to be located near things like community hospitals, require the services of professionals like bookkeepers, computer programmers, and graphic designers, marketing professionals. It may not pay as well as what you're used to in the "outside" world, but hey... it is a job. And resorts abound in part-time, albiet low wage, flexible employment. Many people will purchase property outside of the resort (1/2 hour to an hour away) and commute. Harsh, but necessary sometimes. Resort communities also have a plethora of nice things like restaurants, art galleries, and good shopping.
Which... fresh from my foray south... the tiny towns of the north central hill country utterly lack. In fact, I never did see a grocery store. Couple of small, very pricey, country stores... but narry a single chain store. People on this forum write of shopping at wal mart. Not happening from these towns. A minimum of a 3 hour drive, one way, to find a Wal Mart. Land is considerably less expensive, but there are NO jobs. For work you can expect to commute an hour and half or more over poorly maintained roads... in the dead of a VT winter, where like as not it will be snowing and blowing.
IF (big if) my husband and I were closer to retirement age we would purchase property in one of these small towns in a heartbeat. But anyone looking at these small Vermont towns would do well to take a good look at the property taxes.. and where they're expected to go, and their own abilities to manage when you're so far out there that just fetching groceries becomes a day long chore.