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No Chairlift Needed: A Comprehensive Guide to Resort Uphill

No Chairlift Needed: A Comprehensive Guide to Resort Uphill
Photo Credit: Aspen Snowmass

You know what they say – you gotta get up to get down – and with the boom we’ve seen in backcountry skiing across the state the last two seasons, it’s safe to say that going uphill is here to say. And frankly, earning your turns make them feel that much sweeter. 

Resort uphill is a fantastic way to work on your skinning technique, nail those kickturns, and get a good ol’ fashion workout in. Here’s a comprehensive list of resorts to help you get your uphill fix and all the details you need to know before you head out.

An important note before you head out – it is your responsibility to be aware if the mountain is closed to uphill access during avalanche control, snowmaking, race training, or other special activities. Always add your ski area’s patrol phone number into your contacts in case of an emergency. You should also be sure that you’re aware of all machinery on the mountain – snowcats, winch cats, snowmobiles – and make yourself as visible as possible to them. Wear bright colors, and if it’s dark out wear a headlamp and flash to any oncoming machines. 

Arapahoe Basin Ski Area

Earn your turns to ski the Legend. Purchase a pass for $79 which will get you an uphill access pass and armband and season long access. Already an A-Basin passholder? Awesome, you already have a free uphill pass that you can pickup at any ticket window between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Be sure to wear your armband while skinning or hiking and carry your uphill access pass with you as well.

Looking to head out before the mountain opens? Use any of the open frontside green or blue routes below mid-mountain/ Black Mountain Lodge. You can access the summit outside operational hours on open routes. Access above Black Mountain Lodge is only via open routes and is not allowed after 8:30 a.m. During operational hours, uphill is restricted to the eastern edge of High Noon between the Base Area and Black Mountain Lodge. The East Wall, Beavers and Steep Gullies, and all terrain parks, are always closed outside operational hours for skinning – so save those turns for the chair. You will not be able to head above Black Mountain Lodge after 8:30 a.m. Yes, you can bring your four legged friend but only after operational hours. 

If you’re really looking for a sweat, they even have an early morning Rando Race series that you can register for here. 

Aspen Snowmass 

Aspen, Highlands, Buttermilk, Snowmass – whatever vibe you’re looking for or workout you want, uphill is allowed on each of the four mountains. Each mountain has their own uphill policy so be sure to know before you go. Designated trails are marked by orange signs, and in some cases, marked with rope to designate a lane. No matter where you head, be sure your pass is visible at all times. 

Aspen Mountain 

Uphillers, stay on designated, signed routes during all operating hours. Uphilling is permitted from 5 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. and not allowed from 9 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. as the lifts are spinning. Be sure to leave your four-legged friends at home no matter the operating hours. If you’re not feeling the ski or ride down, feel free to download during the Silver Queen Gondola at no charge. 

Aspen Highlands

Ah yes, the legendary Highlands. If you’re not already planning on hiking the bowl during operating hours, uphilling is allowed from 5 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. along designated uphill routes. Your four legged pal is even allowed to join you from before 7:45 a.m. and after 4:45 p.m. Head up Jerome Bowl to Park Avenue, to Memory Lane to the Merry-Go-Round Restaurant. If you arrive at the Restaurant prior to 8:30 a.m., feel free to keep on chugging, otherwise it’s time to turn around. 


Uphilling is allowed seven days a week on Main Buttermilk, Tiehack, and West on designated routes from 5 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. Same deal as Highlands – yes to dogs but only after operating hours Follow the orange disks across Columbine, through the woods and cross Midway Avenue to Ridge Trail to reach the top of main Buttermilk or head up Eagle Hill to Ptarmigan for Tiehack, or up Teaser to Bridge and finish up on Ridge Trail for West. 


For the most variety of routes, Snowmass is the place to be. Either start from the Base Village or the base of Two Creeks anytime between 5 a.m. and 10:30 p.m. The Two Creeks route follows Cascade to the top of Funnel and around Causeway to the Elk Camp Restaurant. To reach the High Alpine Restaurant, follow Fanny Hill to Lower Green Cabin and finish on Coffee Pot. Follow Base Village to Funnel to reach the Elk Camp Restaurant, or sneak your way up to Sam’s Knob at the top of the Burn. 

Loveland Ski Area

If you’ve never stopped at Loveland, uphill at the Basin is a great way to check out this iconic I-70 resort. If you’re interested, be sure to grab your Uphill Access Card, which must be visible at all times when on the mountain. Follow designated routes to the top of Ptarmigan anytime before 8 a.m. and after 4:30 p.m.What’s important to know here is the base area sign that will not only tell you if uphill access is open and also inform you if there’s any winch cat operations or ongoing avalanche mitigation. 


Steamboat allows uphill access on designated routes before the hours of 9 a.m. and after 4:30 p.m. daily – please note that currently uphill is closed and that dogs are never allowed on the mountain. An uphill access armband is required and Ikon and Steamboat pass holders can purchase a pass for $29, while non pass holders can grab one for $49. A portion of the Uphill Pass proceeds will be donated to Routt County Search and Rescue. In order to get the armband, you must watch a video found on their uphill page as well as sign a waiver. With your armband visible, head up designated routes along Preview, Short Cut, Vogue, Sitz, Jess’ Cut-Off, and Heavenly Daze. 

Winter Park 

Winter Park offers one of the most adventurous uphill options for skiers looking to earn their turns. Pre-purchase your uphill pass for $25 and pick up your armband at the resort. The cool part? All proceeds benefit Grand Country Search & Rescue, Colorado Rapid Avalanche Deployment Dog Team, and Friends of Berthoud Pass. Be sure to wear your armband whenever heading up the mountain and stick to trails that were open that day or day before in any of the Four Territories. A few things to note on trails during operating hours: uphill is not allowed on Lower Parkway and Parkway Chute in Winter Park, all double black diamonds and Trestle, Runaway, Sluice Box and Pine Cliffs in Mary Jane, Village Way and Parry’s Peak unless Panoramic Express is open in Parsenn Bowl, and all trails in Vasquez Ridge. If you’re not sure where to begin, check out their Intro to Uphill lesson 

Ski Cooper

Ski Cooper is all about putting in the vert, stating “uphill access is an activity that Ski Cooper permits in the interest of promoting the enjoyment of the Ski Area and the National Forest.” If you’re planning on skinning, sign up for the pass online and get your uphill card loaded on to your Cooper Card. Your Cooper Card will be scanned at the “Port of Entry” and be sure to carry it with you in case patrol wants to check your pass. With your reflective gear on, pass in pocket, set out up looker’s left of Trail’s End for a frontside ascent, looker’s left of Ambush to head up the backside or Looker’s right Low Road to Motherlode Flats. Routes will be marked by yellow and blue signs. From 4 p.m. to 7:30 a.m., uphill access is allowed on all trails except those that are closed or being groomed. No matter the time of day, keep your four legged friend at home – they’ll be there to greet you once you’re back. 

Howelsen Hill 

Oldest running ski area in Colorado, you bet they have uphill access. During operating hours either take the Lower Hobo Park cross country trail up Mile Run onto Blackmer Trail. Otherwise, park at the Blackmer Trail trailhead to avoid downhill skiers. No additional pass is needed for uphill, and dogs are not allowed within the ski area boundary. After hours, uphill access is permitted anywhere in the ski area. 


For skiers and snowboarders wishing to climb and descend the alpine slopes, Eldora offers uphill access through specific uphill tickets or passes. Uphill passes include early access three days per week from 7 to 9 a.m. (uphill tickets do not include early access), otherwise uphill access is available Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. once uphill access opens for the season (it has not opened as of this writing). There are blackout dates for uphill access at Eldora, so it’s best to sleep in on Saturdays, Sundays, Dec. 20 – Jan. 3, Jan. 17 and Feb. 21. Once you’re ready to put in some sweat equity, start at the Nordic Center to Tenderfoot to Foxtail to Bunnyfair and cross Sundance to Summer Road and Jolly Jug before topping out at the Alpenglow chairlift (this route may change, so be sure to check Eldora’s website prior to visiting).. Another option follows Lower Diamond Back to the junction of Four O’ Clock Trail and into the woods between Klondike and Upper Diamond Back before crossing International to Windmill to the summit of Challenge Mountain. If you have an uphill season pass and plan on heading out for early access, start out by heading to the Indian Peaks Lodge to scan your pass before ascending Bonanza and following the daytime route on Jolly Jug. 

Sunlight Mountain 

Soak up the sights of the Roaring Fork Valley! Free for season pass holders and $10 for a day ticket or $50 for an uphill pass, be sure to keep your pass visible at all times and leave your dog at home. The Blue Route follows under the Tercero lift line to hiker’s left of Loop, and then follow the signs past the top of the lift to Sunking. Continue along the right side of Little Max before summiting. If you’re looking for something a bit more mellow, follow the Green Route from the base along hiker’s left of Ute trail to the top. 


Before you get into some of Colorado’s most storied terrain, head uphill to scope your lines. Uphill access is only permitted on ski trails in the Sunshine area with the exception of Sundance trail from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.. Even fat biking is allowed from 4:30 p.m. to 10 p.m., as is your leashed, well behaved, four-legged friend. 

Powderhorn Mountain Resort

Although uphill access is currently unavailable at Powderhorn, why not get a head start on planning your uphill season? Uphill tickets are $5 and require an online reservation, and uphill passes are available for $29. If you’re already a Powderhorn Season Pass holder, you’re good to go. No matter what option you choose, be sure to have your ticket or arm band with you. During operation hours, stay hiker’s right of Bill’s Run, Red Eye, Lower Greenhorn, Woderbump, Lower Dude, and Tenderfoot. Be sure to never enter closed terrain, and leave your dog at home. 

Granby Ranch

If you’re looking to head uphill, be sure to snag a season pass, lift pack, or day ticket. Whether you’re a snowshoer, a skier, or a splitboarder access is allowed from 7 to 9 a.m. and 4 to 6 p.m. If you head out with your dog, be sure it is only from 7 to 8 a.m. or 5 to 6 p.m. Be sure to stick to designated routes up East Mountain, East Ballroom / Rod’s Way / High Roller, and West Mountain. 

Monarch Mountain 

If you like Monarch in the summer, you’ll love it in the winter. Pick up an uphill access pass at guest services or the Monarch Outpost – uphill access is free to passholders or $59 for the season. Venture out from both during normal operating hours from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and after hours from 4 p.m. to 9 a.m. If you’re a tried and true bike fanatic and missing Monarch Crest shuttle laps, you’re able to fat tire and mountain bike outside of operating hours. No matter your mode of transportation, keep your pass on hand at all times. Monarch recommends leaving your dog at home, even after operating hours, but if you do bring Fido be sure they’re under voice command or on a leash. Uphill routes are marked by yellow, diamond shaped markers with black hours and follow the Barrel Loop, Pano Route, and Milk Route. If the Milk Route and Mirkwood is your destination, be aware that this is avalanche terrain and may be closed, but it’s always important to implement backcountry decision making when in these areas. 

Copper Mountain 

If you spend most of your time in Summit County, Copper is the place to earn your turns. Be sure to have your armband visible while you stay on designated routes during prescribed times when traveling uphill and downhill. Route 1 leaves from East Village and ends at EZ Road at the top of Rhapsody and Route 2 leaves from Center Village up Carefree to the Highpoint/ Coppertone split, and you can access these routes from 5-8:30 a.m. and 4:3-10 p.m. only. Route 3 heads from the bottom of Timberline Expressto the top of Copperfields and Route 4 goes from West Village to the top of Lumberjack lift, and both routes are available form 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. If you’re not sure where to begin, Copper offers uphill tours and if you want to build your backcountry knowledge, check out the new Mammut Education Center. 


Why This is the Perfect Season to Learn to Ski or Ride

Why This is the Perfect Season to Learn to Ski or Ride
Photo: Cooper | Chicago Ridge


If you’ve been biding your time on learning (or relearning) how to ski or ride, your timing couldn’t be better. With the Covid-19 pandemic receding and a new wave of outdoor recreation enthusiasts emerging, there’s never been a better time to learn. If you’re ready to take on an exhilarating new hobby, enjoy breathtaking Colorado mountain scenery, and spend quality time with your friends and family, then lace up your ski boots and we’ll see you on the slopes. If you’re not quite sure yet if this season is the right one for you, keep reading – because winter is here.

You’re ready to re-emerge from the pandemic with new outdoor hobbies. It’s no secret that the Covid-19 pandemic, and the resulting disruption to our daily lives, has inspired a surge in outdoor recreation. Folks are finding new ways to get outside, whether it’s as simple as a picnic in a local park, or a more ambitious outdoor outing, like hitting the slopes for the first time. Because let’s face it – After being locked inside all last year, who wants to be locked inside all winter?

If you’re ready to emerge from the pandemic with a new way to get outside, improve your mental health, get some exercise, and have fun, learning to ski or snowboard might be the perfect fit for you. 

Colorado ski areas offer beginner deals that make learning affordable. If you’re new to winter snowsports, or returning to the slopes after a long break, you might be concerned about the start-up costs of learning to ski or ride. Luckily, Colorado ski areas offers a wide range of options to make sure learning to ski or ride doesn’t have to break the bank.

For brand-new participants to the sport, consider a lesson package. Many ski areas offer discounted packages that include the lessons, lift tickets, and gear rentals you need to get started. For example, Loveland Ski Area’s First-Timer 3-Class Pass includes three half-day lessons, with lift ticket and equipment rentals. Another great option is the Colorado Gems Card, which offers discounted chairlift access at some of the more off-the-beaten-path ski areas in the state, which are convenient and affordable places to learn.

No matter which ski area you choose, you’ll find affordable opportunities to get started or sharpen your skills. And stay tuned for January, when Learn to Ski and Ride Month deals will make it even easier and more affordable to get started skiing or snowboarding.

Learning to ski or ride in Colorado is easier and more convenient than ever before. Whether you’re getting to the slopes by plane, train, or car, there are a lot of ways to travel to Colorado’s ski areas. If you’re coming in from out of state, you can fly into major airports in Denver or Colorado Springs, or you can utilize a variety of regional airports that will give you easy access to the mountains. You can also take the Winter Park Express, which departs from Denver’s Union Station and drops you off at the base of Winter Park Resort.

If you’re driving from the Front Range, there are several ski areas that are only an hour or two away – don’t forget your snow tires. Or, consider a bus service, like the Snowstang that can take you from the heart of Denver to Loveland Ski Area, Arapahoe Basin, and Steamboat Resort. There are also carpool apps, rideshare services, and more. Figure out which method works best for you on our Traveling to Colorado page, and don’t let transportation be the thing that stands between you and a great winter of skiing or riding.

It’s time to prioritize you. In addition to a whole slew of public health lessons, the Covid-19 pandemic taught us that life is too short, and too unpredictable, to not spend it doing what you love. This has inspired a wide range of lifestyle changes, from the Great Resignation to a surge in destination travel. And if you’re ready to start prioritizing your health and happiness, there’s never been a better time to take on an exhilarating new outdoor hobby. Treat yourself.

Kathryn Robinson is a professional communicator at the intersection of the outdoor industry and higher education. After transplanting to Colorado from Florida, she learned to ski for the first time in her early twenties and never looked back. When she’s not on the slopes, she’s working with the Outdoor Recreation Economy program at CU Boulder, hiking, kayaking, or spending time with her family.




How to Score Discounted Skiing and Riding in Colorado

How to Score Discounted Skiing and Riding in Colorado
Photo: Powderhorn Mountain Resort

No matter what type of Colorado skier or rider you are, there’s a deal for you. Whether you’re a powderhound who’s hoping to break your record days on the mountain, a first-timer or recent-returner who’s eager to learn, or a family seeking kid-friendly deals, you’ll find great opportunities to enjoy the mountains in Colorado.

Planning to spend a full season on the slopes? It’s not too late to score a season pass. While the prices aren’t the lowest they’ve been all season, a season pass is still an affordable way to maximize your time on the mountain this winter, especially if you intend to ski or ride more than a few days. Ski passes tend to become more affordable than buying daily lift tickets if you plan to ski or ride 5-6 days or more, on average.

If you’re loyal to a home mountain, or you plan to ski most of your days at the same ski area, you might want to opt for a season pass there. Many Colorado ski areas also include bonus days at additional resorts, or belong to a collective or alliance that offers free or discounted lift tickets at other resorts.

Another great option for the full-season skier is the Colorado Gems Card, which offers either 2-for-1 lift tickets or 30% off lift tickets at 11 Colorado ski resorts.

Ready to learn (or re-learn) how to ski or ride? If it’s your first day on the slopes, or your first day back on the slopes after a long hiatus, it’s a good idea to take a lesson. You can take a lesson at almost all Colorado ski resorts, and many resorts offer great deals on beginner lessons that also include your lift ticket and equipment rental, so you’ll have everything you need to get started.

Colorado ski areas have unique deals and opportunities to learn. For example, Echo Mountain offers Ambassadors that are available throughout the beginner area to offer tips and suggestions, included in the price of your lift ticket. Winter Park Resort offers a half-day lesson package, including lift tickets and equipment rentals, for only $149 first-timers who have never skied or snowboarded before. Granby Ranch offers a one hour private lesson for first-timers only, which includes equipment rentals, if you’d prefer to have personalized attention and instruction. And there are many, many more deals available for first-timers at Colorado ski areas.

Once you’ve taken a lesson or two and your ski legs are ready for the season, consider purchasing a 4-Pack of lift tickets or the Colorado Gems Card to keep the good times rolling.

Looking for deals for the whole family? There are lots of family-friendly options at Colorado ski areas, including deals on kid’s season passes, lift tickets, lessons, and equipment rentals. But the best deal for families in Colorado skiing in the Colorado Ski Country USA Passport Program, which offers 4th Graders, 5th Graders, and 6th Graders four days of skiing at 21 ski areas (84 days total). Right now, the Passport is only $59. That comes out to about 70 cents per day. So for families with children in 4th-6th grade, there’s really no better way to get your kids on the slopes.

Kathryn Robinson is a professional communicator at the intersection of the outdoor industry and higher education. After transplanting to Colorado from Florida, she learned to ski for the first time in her early twenties and never looked back. When she’s not on the slopes, she’s working with the Outdoor Recreation Economy program at CU Boulder, hiking, kayaking, or spending time with her family.


The Ski Season Secrets of the Front Range Weekend Warrior

The Ski Season Secrets of the Front Wage Weekend Warrior
Photo: Arapahoe Basin

If you’re a resident of the Colorado Front Range, you might be starting to think about the approach of another winter, and another ski season. As the nights get colder and folks in Colorado turn their attention to which resort will open next, what the Farmer’s Almanac says about snowfall this year, and the prospect of another season of skiing and riding from the Front Range.

Being a Front Range weekend warrior requires a certain finesse to your ski season planning, whether you’re a first-time skier or rider who’s ready to dip your toe in this winter, a diehard Denver powderhound, or if you’re returning to the slopes after a hiatus. Either way, you’ll face a unique set of challenges that are very different from your mountain town friends or your family members vacationing from out of state. Luckily, there are some simple secrets to getting the most of your ski season as a Front Range weekend warrior.

Secure your mountain access. Though as a weekend warrior you might not get as many days in on the mountain as the ski town locals, you’re still going to need a season pass. You don’t want to show up at the window and pay full price for a single day lift ticket every time you want to ski or ride. And in most cases, a pass pays for itself after just a few days on the mountain.

There are a ton of options for Colorado ski passes – including some multi-mountain passes, like the IKON pass. Another great option is to buy a season pass to your favorite mountain, and then take advantage of pass partnerships to spend a few days at neighboring ski areas as well. And of course, every successful Front Range Weekend Warrior is equipped with a Gems Card. The most affordable way to explore Colorado ski areas, the Gems Card offers deals and discounts at hidden gem ski areas that are off the beaten path.

Enlist your friends. It’s true, there are no friends on a powder day, and sometimes it’s nice to cruise up to the mountains on your own schedule and have the chairlift to yourself. But most of the time, being a weekend warrior is a lot more fun when you have friends to share the experience with. As you kick off your ski season, be on the lookout for pals who also like to hit the mountains on the weekends. Bonus points if they have the same ski pass as you (or if one of you has a Gems Card for 2-for-1 lift tickets).

Get in the know on snow totals. By subscribing to the Colorado Ski Country USA Snow Report, you’ll be the first to know which ski areas have the best conditions each morning. The Snow Report features new snow totals, mid-mountain snow depth, and the number of lifts and runs open. Use this handy tool to plan which ski area you’ll visit when the weekend warrior urge strikes.

Book a few long weekends. As a weekend warrior, it’s important to make the most of your time – you want to maximize your powder turns and reduce your time spent in lift lines or traffic. The solution is to break out your calendar now and book a few long weekends of lodging near the slopes. By driving up on Friday evening and spending the night, you can get the first chairlift of the day on Saturday without having to wake up before the sun. And if you choose a resort with night skiing, you might even have the chance to take a few laps under the stars the night before. 

Don’t forget about the second shift. As a weekend warrior, it feels like the default option is to wake up before the sun and race to get the car loaded up, coffee brewed, lunch packed, and get on the road before dawn. And there are occasions where this is worth it – powder days, for example. But there’s a second option for weekend warriors, which I affectionately call the second shift. Doesn’t it sound nice to sleep in, eat a leisurely breakfast, head up the hill around 11 a.m. and pull right into a front-row parking space that a family with young children has just vacated? Welcome to second shift skiing. It’s the ultimate secret for Front Range Weekend Warriors.

Kathryn Robinson is a professional communicator at the intersection of the outdoor industry and higher education. After transplanting to Colorado from Florida, she learned to ski for the first time in her early twenties and never looked back. When she’s not on the slopes, she’s working with the Outdoor Recreation Economy program at CU Boulder, hiking, kayaking, or spending time with her family.

Sunlight Adds Six (6) New EV Chargers

Sunlight Adds Six (6) New EV Chargers

Project Partners Include Colorado Energy Office, Holy Cross Energy, and Alpine Bank

Other Improvement Include Expanded Parking and Updated IT Infrastructure.

Today Sunlight Mountain Resort announced it will offer two-for-one lift ticket deals during its opening weekend Dec. 10-12 to all electric vehicle (EV) drivers in celebration of it’s six new EV charging stations.

In May, Sunlight was awarded an $18,000 grant from Charge Ahead Colorado,  a program administered by the Colorado Energy Office (CEO) to encourage the installation electric vehicle charging stations throughout the state of Colorado and also “encourage use of electric vehicles because they reduce greenhouse gas emissions, promote energy security through reliance on domestic electricity, and drive an innovative market for new technology.”

In addition to the CEO grant, Holy Cross Energy provided an in-kind equipment donation Holy Cross donated one of the three level II dual port chargers installed at Sunlight. One charger is capable of charging two vehicles at a time. Meanwhile Alpine Bank provided funding for the installation.

“Alpine Bank supports the efforts of our local community nonprofits and entities like Sunlight that are dedicated to sustainability efforts,” said John Stelzriede, president of Alpine Bank Glenwood Springs. “Sunlight’s addition of electronic charging stations for skiers and riders aligns with our priorities at the bank and we’re proud to get behind it.”

Stelzriede added that Alpine Bank recently added its own charging stations at the Glenwood branch for employees and customers.

“At Sunlight, we care about the environment and our proud to illustrate our commitment to environmental sustainability through the installation of these new EV chargers,” said Troy Hawks, marketing and sales director at Sunlight. “This is another example of how our local community helps us get things done here at Sunlight and we’re excited to show our appreciation through our two-for-one lift ticket promotion.”

New Lower Parking Lot

The new EV chargers compliment a new and expanded lower parking lot at Sunlight. This summer crews spent several months hauling in rock, regrading, and expanding the lot to accommodate approximately 60-80 more vehicles.

image 1

Other Improvements to IT Infrastructure

This summer Sunlight has also been busy upgrading its IT infrastructure including a new website on online store that allows season passholders to sign waivers and upload their photos online. Finally a new point-of-sale system brings improved technology to the mountain including new scanners at the lifts.

Aspen Mountain and Snowmass to open Thursday for 75th Anniversary Season with 57 Acres of Terrain

Aspen Mountain and Snowmass to open Thursday for 75th Anniversary Season with 57 Acres of Terrain

Nov. 22, 2021 — Aspen Mountain and Snowmass will open for daily operations Thursday, Nov. 25, with 57 acres of skiable terrain between the two mountains. Lifts will run from 9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.  

“We’re thrilled to be open,” said Katie Ertl, Senior Vice President of Mountain Operations at Aspen Snowmass. “Amid a challenging start to winter, it has been great to see our teams come together to give us all the chance to get out on the hill and make some turns. We will continue to work hard to open more terrain as we get cold temperatures and more natural snow, and we’ll have a ton of people working out on the hill, so please be alert and aware out there.”

Aspen Mountain will open with 50 acres of terrain accessed from the Ajax Express and Gent’s Ridge lifts, with uploading and downloading on the Silver Queen Gondola. There is no beginner terrain available on Aspen Mountain. The Sundeck will be open for food and beverage service. Open trails will include portions of Silver Bell, Upper Copper, Lazy Boy and Deer Park. Lift tickets for Aspen Mountain will be $149 for adults and $99 for children, teens and seniors. Sightseeing tickets are $40 for adults and $30 for children, teens and seniors.  

Snowmass will open with seven acres of terrain in the Elk Camp Meadows Learning Area. The Elk Camp Gondola will provide access to the Elk Camp Meadows Learning Area, the Breathtaker Coaster, and Elk Camp Restaurant.  A pocket terrain park will be open on Fanny Hill, and the climbing wall at Limelight Hotel Snowmass will be open in the afternoons. Access to Snowmass will be free on Thursday and Friday. Beginning Saturday, access to the Elk Camp Gondola will be $40 for adults and $30 for children, teens, and seniors for sightseeing, skiing and riding. For pricing and details on other on-mountain activities, visit

To celebrate the kickoff of Aspen Snowmass’ 75th anniversary season, there will be music and festivities at the base and at the top of Aspen Mountain, as well as at Elk Camp restaurant on Snowmass. Additionally, games and activities will be available at Elk Camp.  

The Ski & Snowboard School will offer both group and private lessons for all ages at Snowmass, including children’s lessons out of the Treehouse Kids’ Adventure Center. Private lessons will be available at Aspen Mountain. Four Mountain Sports will be open for rentals and gear. 

Per Pitkin County guidelines, masks are required in all indoor facilities. For these guidelines, gondolas are considered to be indoor spaces and masks are required. For full COVID-19 procedures and information visit  

The Aspen Snowmass app will be updated with tracking, snow reporting, parking lot status and skier information as well as on-demand, on-mountain dining options for takeout. For more information, visit:  

For information on parking at Snowmass or in the Town of Aspen, visit  

Beginning Monday, Nov. 22, Aspen Mountain will be closed to uphill travel for ski area preparation. All other mountains are open to uphilling, with purchase of an Uphill Pass. Early season conditions exist and there is heavy vehicle traffic with snowmaking, grooming and mountain prep underway on all mountains. Uphillers are advised to be alert and avoid heavily trafficked areas. For the most up-to-date uphill policies and information on purchasing an Uphill Pass, please visit  

Aspen Highlands and Buttermilk are scheduled to open Dec. 11.  



Photo: Curtis DeVore, Copper Mountain

  • First 50 skiers and riders will receive a Copper Mountain Yeti Rambler and Mammut hoodie on Nov. 22 
  • Copper kicks off the season with Snowsation featuring free performances from Daniel Rodriguez and Leftover Salmon on Nov. 27. 

Skiers and riders will have access to over 70 acres of terrain when Copper Mountain opens for the 2021-22 winter season on Monday, Nov. 22. Copper’s American Eagle lift, located in Center Village, will start turning at 9 a.m. for a first chair banner break, inviting skiers and snowboarders to access top-to-bottom terrain with four lifts and six trails open to the public. 

The following lifts and trails will be open to the public for skiing and riding out of Copper Mountain’s Center Village.  

Center Village – Beginner & Intermediate Terrain 

  • American Eagle Lift – Rhapsody, Main Vein 
  • Excelerator Lift – Mine Dump and CDL’s Trail #20. Excelerator lift will be on a delayed opening. 
  • EZ Rider Lift – EZ Rider Learning Area 
  • Pitchfork Lift – Green Acres Beginner area likely to open 

A Woodward Pop-Up park will also be available on opening day. Skiers and riders can look for more natural terrain to open as conditions allow. 

To ignite stoke for the upcoming season, opening day festivities kick-off on Sunday, Nov. 21 at Ten Mile Tavern with a screening of Faction Skis newly released feature film, “Roots.” Doors open at 4:30 p.m. with the film beginning at 5:15 p.m. Filmgoers are also encouraged to sign up for the Ten Mile Tavern Mug Club, a season-long membership which includes an engraved 20 oz. beer mug for a bigger pour, $1 off 10 Barrel drafts, a swag bag and food specials for only $50. Learn more about the film screening and RSVP to attend at  

In addition to offering over 70 acres of terrain of skiing and riding on opening day, early season revelers can enjoy a live DJ set in Center Village throughout the day and those that arrive early to the mountain will receive free swag, treats and hot chocolate. The first 50 skiers and riders to unload the American Eagle lift will be treated to a free Copper Mountain 18oz YETI Rambler with chug cap, free Mammut hoodie and a 40% discount code to redeem online at Guests are also encouraged to stop by Copper’s brand new Mammut Education Center in Center Village to be entered in a giveaway to win a Mammut avalanche transceiver or jacket. 

On Nov. 26-27, Snowsation presented by Nokian Tyres returns to Copper for a season opening celebration of live music, giveaways and games. Head to Eagle’s Landing in Copper’s Center Village for two fun-filled days of live music, Subaru car karaoke and more. On Friday night, guests can enjoy a live DJ set from DJ Benjë from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m., followed immediately by a snowcat parade and fireworks show. On Saturday, Boulder-based jam band Leftover Salmon will headline Snowsation with a free live music performance beginning at 5 p.m. Denver-based musician Daniel Rodriguez will open for the band with a live set starting at 3:30 p.m. For a full Snowsation schedule visit

With a stacked lineup of events and plenty of powder days ahead, the best way to experience Copper Mountain this winter is by staying slope side. Copper’s Cyber Sale runs from Nov. 19 through Nov. 30 offering extra savings on resort accommodations available for as low as $119 per night. Vacationers can save up to 43% on lodging when they book a stay of three nights or more at Copper this winter. Ski travelers can save up to 56% on lodging when they bundle a lodging stay of three nights or more with lift tickets. Guests can also save up to 15% on a double queen room at the new Element 29 hotel when they book a stay of three nights or more. Learn more about Copper’s lodging discounts or book a stay at the mountain at

Take advantage of season long access to the mountain with a Copper Mountain season pass with Kids Ski Free, for $799. Each adult season pass purchaser is eligible to receive a free season pass for one child age 15 and under with Kids Ski Free. Copper Mountain season passes include added benefits such as discounted friends & family tickets and savings on dining, retail and rentals. Purchase a season pass at

The Athlete’s Mountain offers experiences for those seeking new challenges and unbounded inspiration. From the mountain’s naturally divided terrain to the resort’s progression driven training venues and curated lesson experiences, Copper Mountain caters to adventure seekers. Learn more about Copper Mountain’s 2021-22 winter season offerings at

Explore Colorado with the 4th, 5th and 6th Grade Ski Passport

Explore Colorado with the 4th, 5th and 6th Grade Ski Passport

Photo: Aspen Snowmass

With the ski season right around the corner, now is the time to make sure you and your family are ready to make the most of this winter season on the slopes. If you have a 4th, 5th, or 6th grader the best way to make sure they have the winter of their lives in Colorado Ski Country is with the Ski Passport!

The newly expanded 4th, 5th and 6th Grade Ski Passport is the best way for a young skier to see every lift, lodge, and peak this winter giving them up to 84 days of skiing in Colorado Ski Country. With one Ski Passport, your child will get four full days of skiing at each of 21 Colorado Ski Country USA’s member mountains. Whether you’re getting in a few runs with them after school at Echo or taking that big trip to Steamboat, the Ski Passport has your  4th, 5th and 6th Graders covered for all the snow they can ski or ride.

From Eldora to Telluride, Powderhorn to Monarch, 21 participating Colorado Ski Country member mountains offer up to 4 days of skiing on the Ski Passport, including weekends. Whether you’re looking to pick up skiing for the first time or are wanting to venture outside of your home mountain at an affordable price, the Ski Passport is your child’s ticket to experience one of Colorado’s most beloved winter pastimes. There is nothing better than exploring all of the exciting ski areas that Colorado has to offer and getting out on the slopes with your family.  Our Ski Passport is the best way to get your 4th, 5th, and 6th graders skiing or snowboarding all season long.

Limited quantities of the Colorado Ski Country Ski Passports are on sale now (starting at $59) for all 4th, 5th, and 6th graders and some restrictions do apply.  Please make sure to  read all about the Ski Passport program here.  If you’re ready to start the registration process for your 4th, 5th or 6th grade skier or snowboarder click here to start the registration process.

Visa Big Air Schedule presented by Toyota and Free Concert Announced

Visa Big Air Schedule presented by Toyota and Free Concert Announced

Steamboat Ski Resort is set to host the Visa Big Air presented by Toyota December 2 through 4. The schedule of events for the first U.S. Olympic qualifying event of the season has been announced including a Make it Count Free Concert powered by Jack Daniels featuring Ozomatli.

The Visa Big Air competition will take place in the Park Smalley Freestyle Complex adjacent to Voo Doo. The event venue will be accessible on-mountain for skiers and snowboarders with lift access from Christie Peak Express. Big Air Snowboarding will make its second Olympic appearance at the 2022 Winter Games and this year freeskiing will make its debut.

Ozomatli will play the first free concert in the new Steamboat Square and cap off the Visa Big Air event on Saturday, December 4. The four-time Grammy award winning band has been recognized widely for a unique combination of cultures in their music including urban, Latino, hip hop, salsa, dancehall, cumbia, samba and funk with influences of East Los Angeles, New Orleans, Jamaica, and India. Ozomatli has served as an official U.S. Cultural Ambassador having played for audiences around the world and performed on television on The Today Show, Jimmy Kimmel, The Tonight Show, and more. 

For more information on the event and full schedule, visit



Thursday, December 2

Snowboard Big Air Qualifications

10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.      Men’s Snowboard Qualifications

2:00 – 3:00 p.m.                Women’s Snowboard Qualifications


Friday, December 3

Freeski Big Air Qualifications

10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.     Men’s Freeski Qualifications

2:00 – 3:00 p.m.               Women’s Freeski Qualifications


Saturday, December 4

Snowboard Big Air Finals, Freeski Big Air Finals

9:30 – 11:00 a.m.              Snowboard Big Air Finals

1:00 – 2:30 p.m.                Freeski Big Air Finals

Awards immediately following in competition venue

3:00 p.m.                             Make it Count Free Concert powered by Jack Daniels featuring Ozomatli

Located on the stage in Steamboat Square


Loveland Ski Area Opening Day

Photo: Dustin Schaefer, Loveland Ski Area

Loveland Ski Area will open for the 2021/22 season on Saturday, October 30

“We’ve been counting down the days to ski season since we closed in May and couldn’t be more excited to welcome everyone back to Loveland for another amazing winter,” said COO Rob Goodell. “With some help from Mother Nature, our snowmaking team has done an incredible job getting the mountain ready and we invite everyone to come join us for Opening Day on Saturday.”

Loveland Ski Area opened on November 11 last season.

Chet’s Dream will run from 8:30am until 4:00pm on Saturday, October 30 and will offer skiers and riders access to one top-to-bottom run covered from tree-to-tree with an 18-inch base. The trails Catwalk, Mambo and Home Run make up this Opening Day run which is over a mile in length and nearly 1,000 vertical feet. Once snowmaking is completed on these runs, Loveland’s snowmaking team will focus on getting Spillway and Richard’s Run open as quickly as possible.

“It has been a busy summer up here at Loveland,” continued Goodell. “We are very excited about the Valley Lodge Expansion as this project will triple the amount of seating in the lodge and significantly expand the Rental Shop as well as our Ski & Ride School check-in area. We are also preparing to launch Loveland Snowcat Tours in January which we have been working on for a number of years. This will be a guided snowcat operation in Dry Gulch, just east of Lift 8, and we can’t wait to start bringing guests out there to explore the terrain.”

Loveland Ski Area will be open seven days a week until Closing Day in early May. Lift operating hours are 9:00am until 4:00pm on weekdays and 8:30am until 4:00pm on weekends and designated holidays. Early Season lift tickets are $85 for adults and $35 for children 6-14. Lift tickets can be purchased online at or at the Ticket Office.

Loveland Ski Area will require guests to wear a mask inside all Loveland facilities for the 2021/22 season. For more details on Loveland’s Operating Plan for the 2021/22 season, please visit