Best Colorado Ski Resorts for the Winter Season of 22/23

Colorado has some of the best ski and snowboard conditions in the U.S., and snowfall amounts during big storms can be spectacular. There are top-notch, world-class ski and snowboard destinations, but there are also small, friendly, low-key mountain towns where you can get away from it all for a few days.

When choosing a Colorado mountain vacation destination, consider personal tastes, skiing preferences, skills, budget, convenience of the location, and when you'd like to visit. Unlike some of the mountains in Utah, all the mountains in Colorado are open to skiers and snowboarder alike.

There are several major ski resorts in Colorado, including Brecken­ridge, Keystone, Arapehoe Basin, Copper, and Vail. Aspen and Steamboathave slightly farther away from Denver, but they're still close enough for most people to reach by car. Both of these towns have their own airport with direct flight connections to destinations in the United States.

Southwest Colorado has some of the most beautiful scenery in the world. It includes the towns of Purgatory, Tellurite, and Silverton, among others.

Opening and closure times of the skiing areas are often dependent upon weather. Some areas remain opened until the end of the season, whereas others close down early if the weather doesn't cooperate. A number of the larger areas have invested heavily in snow-making machines to ensure they can keep operating throughout the winter months. These areas typically start opening much earlier than in previous seasons.

Plan your winter vacation with our list of the top 10 skiing destinations in Colorado.

1. Breckenridge Ski Resort

Colorado ski resorts

Breckenridge is the complete package, including groomers through the trees to incredible high alpine bowls that can be accessed with a lift. With even a minimal hike off the Imperial Chairlift you can find some outstanding ski conditions. The exposed bowls may seem intimidating from a distance, however they offer unmatched skiing opportunities for advanced skier. This is the perfect spot for any skier who wants to push his/her skills past intermediate.

Breckenridge offers terrain for every level of skier/snowboarder, from beginners to experts. It's relatively easy to get around because it's spread out along the front sides of several peaks. On top of that, the on-mountaintop dining is usually pretty good.

The ski resort here is quite steep, starting from an altitude of 9,600 ft. The Imperial chairlift on Peak 8 is one of the highest lifts in North America, reaching up to 12,998 ft. On spring days, the bottom of the mountain may be soft, but the top of the mountain usually has good snow conditions.

If you're planning to ski at Breckenridge during the winter months, keep in mind that the altitude can be challenging for some people. Breckenridge underwent several recent renovations, including a new guest service facility, a new children's ski/snowboard school, child care centers, and new rentals.

You may notice a change in the ski line in the Peak 7 region. The reason for this change is the new Freedom Super Chair. Its placement has dramatically reduced the wait times typically experienced at the Independence Chair. Another upgrade, geared towards beginning skiers, is the removal of Rip's Ride. In its place is a brand-new high speed quad.

Breckenridge Ski Resort will limit day lift tickets to a set amount of skiers. This will help keep the mountain open for everyone who wants to enjoy the slopes. EPIC day passes and EPIC season passes will not be affected by this change. Patents of the ski schools will also be exempt from this policy.

Breckenridge has a charming downtown full of shops and restaurants where you can enjoy some après ski activities. You can take a stroll down Main St. after skiing and watch the sunset from one of its many patios. You can get off at the bottom of the hill and walk up to the resort. It's cheaper than parking elsewhere.

If you're looking for a fun ski vacation, Breckenridge is a good option.

See here for the official site.

2. Vail Mountain Resort

Vail ski resort

Vail is the biggest resort in Colorado. It has some of the best ski slopes in the state.

There are plenty of ski resorts where you can spend a whole winter without ever going down the back bowl. But if you want to experience skiing at its best, then you need to go to Vail.

The extensive and varied landscape makes it easy for everyone to find good snow anywhere on the slopes, whether they're beginner or expert skier. Intermediate and advanced skis and riders will find excellent tree-skipping, mogul-flying, and steep-sliding on the backside.

Vail isn't as high as some of its neighbors, but it still gets plenty of snow, with more then 300" of snowfall each year. It also just finished a big snow making improvement project, which means there's now an even longer ski season.

Located at 3,914 feet above sea level, the mountain has 31 ski slopes, three terrain parks, groomed runs, and offers skiing lessons for beginners and intermediates.

For 2022/23, Vail Mountain is planning to replace the existing four-pitch quad chairlift with a six-passenger high-speed chairlift. This will significantly increase capacity and allow for more laps around the mountain. In addition, a brand new lift will be installed to help alleviate congestion at Lift #5. The new Sun Down Chairlift will provide easy access to the Sun Down bowl and relieve the stress on Lift #5.

In order to ensure that the skiing experience remains enjoyable for everyone, we've decided to limit lift tickets to a certain number of people each hour. We're also limiting the number of days that can be purchased annually. These changes will help us keep our mountain open for everyone during busy times.

The Town: Just off Interstate 70, at the bottom of the mountain, lies the small ski town of Vail. Its accommodations cater mainly to wealthy tourists, its restaurants serve up fine cuisine, and its shops sell everything from designer clothing to expensive jewelry.

By skier's village standard, Vail is huge. Along the interstate, one can exit for East Vail, West Vail, and Vail Town Center. Vail Town Center is where all the action happens. In addition to being home to restaurants, shops, and lodging, VTC is also where you will find parking for your car. VTC is also where people go to shop. These two areas are basically connected to each other.

East Vail is a quiet community nestled among the trees and mountains. It is not close to any major roads, so getting around can be difficult. However, if you stay here, you'll find yourself near the base area where you can easily get to the slopes. West Vail is much closer to town and offers easy access to everything you might need. It also has a large selection of shops and restaurants.

If you're staying in Vail, you might want to consider staying in one of the nearby towns instead, which include Silverthorne, Frisco, Avon, and Eagle. You could also stay at an airbnb property near the Eagle Vail International (EVI) Airpark. It takes about 30 minutes to get there by car.

3. Aspen Snowmass

Ski resorts in Colorado

Aspen Snowmass consists of four separate mountain ranges, including Snowmass, Aspen, Aspen Highlands, And Buttermilk. Together, these four mountains encompass an enormous amount of territory, comparable to Vail.

Recently completed projects include the opening of the $10.7 million dollar high speed quadslide, replacing the old Big Burn lift; several new restaurants, infrastructure updates, and new shops at the resort’s lower level; an increased snowmaking capacity; and additional high alpine lifts.

The mountains: Snowmass, with almost 4,000 acres of terrain and great intermediate ski slopes, dominate in size. They're primarily a family-oriented mountain with great intermediate ski slopes.

The base altitude is approximately 8,100 feet, while the peak altitude is approximately 12,500 feet.

At the bottom of the mountain, Snowmass Village has a very traditional village atmosphere, with pedestrians-only streets lined with stores and eateries. It’s a good place to stay if you want to go skiing at Snowmass.

Snowmass started a practice of providing free s’mores from 3:30 to 4:30 every day at the base village and mall.

Buttermilk, despite having a relatively small number of trails, has become famous for its frequent hosting of the Winter X Games. It has a large variety of intermediate and advanced runs. By contrast, Aspen Mountain has few intermediate and advanced runs.

It has some of the best ski resorts in Colorado, but it also offers beginner and intermediate skiing.

Aspen Snowmass Resort will host the best downhill skiers in the world during the Audi FIS Ski World Championships from March 3-5, 2020.

Aspen Snowmass Resort is part of both the mountain collective ski pass and ikon ski pass programs.

The Place: The city of Aspen, located at the base of Aspens Mountain, has long been associated with high wattage celebrities. Many famous stars, ranging from Hollywood superstarts to famous athletes, own properties in the area. It’s a popular place for a weekender away from Denver, even if they aren't a skiers.

This is not just any old ski area. It was originally a mining community, so it has a genuine mountain village atmosphere. You'll find a wide variety of accommodations near the base of the slope or further back. Aspen also has lots of activities for people who aren't skiers.

4. Telluride Ski Resort

Skiing Colorado

Located in the San Juan Mountains in Colorado, Telluride is a beautiful mountain town with some of the best skiing in North America. It's no wonder that Telluride has been so successful at becoming a major winter vacation spot.

The mountain: If you're looking for an epic place to go skiing in Colorado, this is one of our favorites. It has more than 2,100 skiable hectares, a base altitude of 8,735 feet, and a maximum altitude of 13,150 feet.

There are plenty of beginner, intermediate, advanced, and expert trails at Mount Snow, and experts will find lots of hike-to territory for more extreme skiing. Annual snowfall amounts vary from about 300 inches to 500 inches.

For the 2022/2023 season Telluride Mountain Resort has invested in a new ski lift #9 (The plunge). This is the first of two new chairs. The second one will be a detachable quad and will replace the current fixed-gripper triple. Ride times will be reduced to 7 min from the previous 12.

There's no need to be skiing to take advantage of the gondolas. Anyone can use them.

If you're going to stay in Telluride instead of Mountain Village, you can ski all the way back down to Telluride after finishing your run. You won't be able to use the gondola for that trip, but you can take the chairlift up to the top of the mountain and then walk down.

Telluride is included in the EPIC Ski Pass.

Telluride is an authentic mountain village, not a corporate owned vacation destination. The main street is filled with interesting boutiques, cafes, and restaurants. You don't have t obe a skier to enjoy your visit here, and the city is just as fun during the summer months as it is in the snowy season. The city hosts events and activities throughout the year, making them a great place to spend any amount of time.

Nearby Towns and Travel Options: Telluride offers great skiing and hiking opportunities. Telluride is located near the San Juan Mountains and is home to the highest concentration of peaks in the state. In addition to being an excellent destination for outdoor activities, Telluride also boasts a thriving arts community. Telluride is known for its festivals and events throughout the year. During the summer months, Telluride hosts the Telluride Film Festival and the Telluride Bluegrass Festival.

If you're looking for cheap accommodations, friendly people, and a lively nightlife, you might be interested in considering Durango, which has a lively nightlife scene and offers affordable lodging options. You could also consider Montrose, which doesn't offer the same nightlife but has cheaper lodging options than Durango.

5. Beaver Creek Resort

Colorado ski run

Located just a few miles away from Vail, Beaver Creek is one of Colorado’s most popular ski resorts. Known for its excellent customer service, groomer-friendly terrain, and friendly atmosphere, this mountain offers skiers and riders an unparalleled experience.

With over 1800 hectares of skiable terrain, Breckenridge Ski Area is one of the best skiing destinations in Colorado for beginners. It has excellent groomed slopes for novices, making it ideal for first time visitors.

Last year, the ski area added two new quad chairs to its McCoy Park area to provide easier access to 250 acres of terrain suited for intermediate and beginners. It was a huge hit among skier’s who enjoy the new faster access to the slopes.

At three o'clock each day, the scent of freshly baked cookies fills the air as they're given away to skiers leaving the slopes or hanging around the base.

At the top of each ski run, an attendant helps guests get off the lift and onto the chairlift. There are no stairs between the chairlift and the base lodge; instead, the chairlift takes guests directly to the bottom of the mountain. The sidewalk is kept clear of snow by heating elements, so there is never any buildup of ice.

The resort has the lowest base and highest summit elevations of any of the big ski hills in the area. It’s a good choice if you're coming from low altitudes and want to avoid altitude illness. If you plan to visit multiple ski hills during your stay, start at Beaver Creek first.

At Beaver Creek, daily lift tickets will be sold in sets of four. This is an attempt to keep the user experience on the mountain high. Epic season passes and Epic days will not be affected by this change. Patrons of the ski school will also be able to purchase unlimited access to the lifts.

Beaver Creek is part the EPIC Ski Pass Program.

The town: Located at the bottom of the mountain, this is a nice spot for relaxing after a day of skiing or boarding. You can sit outside at an outdoor table and enjoy watching the last few skiers coming down the slopes.

Located behind the restaurant and establishment line up along the mountain is an outdoor plaza with seating, a fireplace, and a large outdoor ice skating rink. Surrounding the plaza are stores and eateries.

If you're looking for nearby towns and accommodations, Avon is a good place to stay. It has plenty of shopping, dining, and entertainment opportunities, plus free shuttles to take you up to Beaver Creek.

If you're looking for upscale dining with a casual ambience and good food, head to Vin 48 or Blue Plate. You can stop by the Northside Kitchen for a quick bite or order takeout pastries from the front desk.

6. Keystone Resort

The mountain: Keystone is spread out over three mountains, each one taking you further into the woods, away from the resort, so the deeper you ski, the less crowded the slopes become. It’s a big resort with 20 lifts and plenty of terrain to suit everyone’s abilities, making it ideal for family skiers.

The ski resorts around Lake Tahoe offer a wide variety of skiing and boarding opportunities. Beginners can enjoy easy slopes and gentle glades, while intermediates can find challenging terrain and expert trails. Experts can take advantage of the varied terrain and snow conditions to hone their skills.

Keystone recently introduced a new six-passengers chairlift at its resort in Utah. This will increase uphill lift capacity by 25 percent and improve ski traffic flow in the Mountain House section.

Construction has begun on a new six-person lift at the Bergman Bowl. It's expected to be completed by January, 2023.

If you're looking for even more adventure than you get at Keystone, the mountain has an extensive cat skiing program. It also boasts Colorado's longest ski days.

Keystone will be limiting daily lift ticket sales to a fixed amount. This is an effort towards maintaining the user’s skiing experiences on the mountain. Epic Pass and Epic Ski School Patrons will be exempted from this limit. Daily quantities available will be listed on the mountain’s website.

Keystone is part of Epic Mountain Pass.

The Town: Keystone Resort has two villages: RiverRun and Lakeside. RiverRun is the main town at the base of the mountains. For skiers, it’s the heart of the activity. It offers a varietyof relaxing dining options, just perfect after a day on the slopes.

The ski slopes here are well maintained and offer plenty of space for everyone to enjoy themselves. They're also free to use, so there's no need to worry about paying for expensive lift tickets.

Lakeside Village is surrounded by shops, restaurants, and condos. It's usually covered in ice during the winter months.

Keystone Resort offers plenty of activities for guests who want to spend their time outside of the slopes. These range from horse-drawn sleighs to snowmobiling, to a variety of arts and crafts classes, to a full spa.

7. Purgatory Resort

The Valley: Purgatory Valley Ski Area is located near Durango, Colorado, in the San Juan mountains. It has a good mix of beginner and intermediate terrain, but lacks any real glitzy features. It is also one of the most affordable resorts in the state.

The mountain at Purgatory has traditionally had a heavy skew towards beginners and intermediates. However, those with advanced skills have always found challenging spots here. Over the past few years, the mountain has added new intermediate and advanced-skier/boarder runs and new treeside ski areas.

A great way to save money for families is by taking advantage of the free skiing opportunities offered at resorts during the winter months.

There are several accommodations near the resort, but none in the actual resort itself. Most people stay in Durango and commute.

Durango was once a mining city, but today it’s a lively tourism destination with beautiful old buildings, trendy restaurants, and plenty of ski shops.

Purgatory is about two hours' drive from Telluride, Colorado. It's best if you stay there overnight so you can explore the town.

8. Steamboat Ski Resort

The Mountains: Steamboat Ski Resort lies at an elevation of 7,000 feet above sea level. It averages 334 inches of annual precipitation, making it one of the wettest ski resorts in Colorado. The resort has trademarking the phrase “Champagne Powders” which refers to the dry, fluffy, white pow that makes up most of the winter season here.

Elevations range from 6,900 ft at the base to 10.567 ft at the top. It’s not particularly high by Colorado standards, but it may be an option for some who are worried about the effects of high altitudes.

Steamboat Springs has 2,965 square miles of land, making it one of Colorado’s largest ski resorts. It’s especially famous for its fantastic tree skiing.

It's hard to imagine that the resort could grow any larger. Last year, they added another 355 acres of new territory, which opened up some steep and deep snow for everyone to enjoy. If you're hungry and want a bit of local history on the go, head over to Hazie's Restaurant, where they serve delicious meals and offer a glimpse into the past.

Alterra has invested over $200 million in its infrastructure over the past few years. When they're finished in 2024/25, the resort will look completely different than it did before.

By 2022/23, Steamboat Square will be undergoing a major renovation, which means there will be fewer stores and restaurants than before. However, there will be some new additions, including a new ice rink for post-skiing families.

The most exciting development in lift infrastructure is the new wild blue gondolay. Work is underway for the 2022/23 ski seasons; it will be operational until mid station. You might wonder where the Christie peak express lift has gone. Don't worry,it hasn't been demolished;it has just been relocated. However,the mini golf and mountain coaster rides have been taken down and will not be replaced

Lessons at Greenhorn Ranch will now take place at the new 14-acre, state-of-the-art Greenhorn Ranch Learning Center, which includes a chair lift, four magic carpet lifts, and its own snowmaking system.

The resort will also be adding two new grooming stations, new snow making capacity, and an upgrade for the Sunshine Express lift.

Steamboat is part the IKON Ski pass program.

The Town: Steamboath Springs is located far away from the rest of the major skiing destinations in Colorado. It has a strong Western heritage, and there are lots of festivals, activities, and other fun stuff to do here.

It takes 3 hours to get to Steamboat Springs by car, but there’s an airport with direct flight connections from most major US cities.

9. Copper Mountain

The mountain: Copper Mountain is a large ski resort located just outside of Denver. You can view the runs from the highway as you're driving towards Vail.

With 23 ski slopes covering 2,465 acres, you'll find everything from beginner slopes to expert ones. There are even some challenging black diamond trails here.

Skiing conditions at Copper Mountain are usually on average compared to the rest of the ski resort. It has an elevation of 9,712 ft (2,937 m) and a summit elevation of 11,813 ft (3,543 m). There is often enough snow for skiing after storms, but there is always groomed terrain available for beginners and intermediates.

The 2020/21 winter season at Copper Mountain will mark its 50th anniversary. There are lots of exciting things happening throughout the resort, so be sure to check their site for updates.

Copper is part of the IKON Ski Pass program.

The town: The mountainside empties into a cute little village, with stores and eateries. You'll find lots of family-friendly spots, but there are also some nice bars and clubs for adults too.

There are three villages in the resort: East Village, Center Village (the main plaza), and West Village. Each of them has chair lifts, but they're all very close together. West Lake is tucked in between.

10. Arapahoe Basin

The Mountain: Known as “A Basin”, Arapaho has the distinct advantage of staying open into June and sometimes also late April. Located on Loveland pass, the summit elevation rises to 13,050 ft and the base elevation is ten thousand seven hundred and eighty (10,780) ft. This allows the resort stay open into June and often even later, well past the April close date of the surrounding mountain resorts. Arapaho is one of the best place in Colorado for early season skiing.

At Arapahoes, you can expect to run on beautiful open runs, some of which are quite challenging, and some of which are designed for beginners. These runs typically go up two sides of a ridge so you can usually find good running no matter the weather. On most days, there's shelter from the wind on either side of the ridge.

The resort has traditionally had less terrain than its neighbors, but that's all changed now. The resort is currently undergoing a multi-seasonal construction project, including the Beaver Creek Hike-To ski complex. This new addition has proven to be very popular with expert skiers.

The relaxed, fun and old-fashioned ambience at Arapahoe makes it an ideal place for families to spend time together. Families often come here to ski, but there's plenty to do off the slopes too. Dogs are welcome, kids are encouraged, and everyone enjoys themselves.

Arpahoe Basin is an easy drive from Denver, offers good value for its price, and is often included on multi-resort and multiday passes. It also has many of its own special deals, which can be excellent values if they match up with your skiing plans. Even if you aren't planning a full vacation to Arpahoe Basin, it's definitely worth visiting if you're skiing some of the nearby resorts.

Arapahoe Mountain will be restricting day lift-ticket sales to a certain number of skier/snowboarder. This is an effort towards maintaining the user’s experience on the mountain. Epic day passes and Epic season passes will be exempt from this restriction. Quantities available per hour will be posted on the mountain’s site. Note also that day lifts must be bought in advance, online. There will not be any day lift sales at the mountain.

Arapahoe has been accepted into the EPIC, MountainCollective, and IKONPass programs.

Arapahoe ski resort opens in October and closes in June.

If you're staying at Arapahoe Basin, you'll need to look for accommodations nearby. From Arapahoa Basin, it takes about 10 minutes to get to Keystone and about 30 minutes to get to Breckenridge (depending on traffic).

For reasonably priced hotel rooms, it's best to check out Silverthorne, which is about a 20-minutes' ride from the mountains. Slightly further away, but with a livelier atmosphere and better selection of accommodations, is the town of Fraser.

11. Silverton Mountain

There's no way an articles on skiing or snowboarding here in Colorado would be complete without mentioning Silverton Ski Resorts. It offers a completely unique experience that most people dream about. It was featured in the Warren Millerski movie, Timeless.

The Mountain: A single chair lifts riders up the mountain to access the backcountry. It's basically hiking with a ski pass. This is a place where experts go to shred powder. The area receives an extremely high amount of snow fall, with yearly totals of around 400 inches, and there aren't any groomed trails.

All guests at the resort are equipped with avalanche equipment before heading up the mountainside. Busses take guests from the resort to their starting point, a kilometer or two away.

The base lodge is little more than a small, one-room cabin. This is not a luxury hotel that screams opulence. What it does have though is great snowboarding, a strong following of snowboarders who love this kind of mountain, and an environment like no other ski area in Colorado. Everyone here loves being out on the slopes, and the laid back vibe is embraced.

Don't worry if it all seems too daunting; there's a program that will help you get started.

At Silverton Mountain, you can ski and ride from mid-November until early May. You can also take helicopter tours into the backcountry during this time.

If you've always dreamed of renting out a ski resort for yourself and 40 of your closest pals, then here's an idea for you. It costs just $9,990 (about £7,000) per year, so you could be skiing every day of the winter season. You'd need to book early though, because availability is limited.

Opening and closing dates: Silverton Mountain opens on December 29, 2022 and closes mid-April, 2023.

The Village: Silverton Mountain is located about an hour’s drive north of Denver. This former mining village is today a largely seasonal tourism destination and many of the businesses here close down during the winter months. At around 8,000 feet above sea level, it is often covered in thick blankets of white powdery stuff. During the winter months, much of the accommodations here are motel rooms, but a number of small historic hotels provide a little more comfort.

Nearby Towns and Travel: In good driving condition, Durango is about an hour's drive from silverton. In snowy condition, plan on much longer travel times. If you are looking to get out of town, Durango is the best option. There is also much better accommodation options here.

Ski Passes and Deals / Colorado Ski Packages

  • Epic Pass: The epic pass is the best pass for skiiing in Colorado. It allows unrestricted access to all of the ski resorts owned and operated by vail resorts in Colorado, plus many other resorts across North America and around world. In Colorado, it includes: Vail, Beaver creek, Keystone, Breckinridge, Arapahoa basin, Crested Butte and 7 days of Skiiing at Telluride. It is also possible to purchase limited Epic passes, which are good value for people who are only planning to ski in certain areas of Colorado or for a limited amount of days.
  • Ikon Pass: Ikon Pass offers access worldwide, but some of this may be limited. In Colorado it includes unrestricted access to Steamboat, winter park, Copper mountain, and Eldora. Also included is 7 day skiing at each Snowmass, and Arapahoe ski resort. Ikon Pass also offers a basic pass, which includes blacked out dates.
  • If you're looking for a more restricted pass, the Mountain Collective might be worth considering. You can spend up to 46 consecutive nights without any blackouts.
  • Buy a Colorado ski vacation package to get bundle discounts. You can get ski lodging, ski gear, ski passes, flights and transportation all in one place to save on cost and for convenience.

There are other ski resorts to consider besides Aspen Mountain.

  • Crested Butte is located in the heart of the Rocky Mountains, close to the midpoint of the state. Its remoteness and lack of amenities make it an ideal place for those who enjoy solitude and adventure. The small ski village boasts about 1,500 acres of terrain, including nearly 2,000 feet of vertical drop. The mountain also features a variety of trails for hiking, biking, horseback riding, and snowmobiling.
  • Value Skiers: A large selection of small or lesser known skier destinations can be found throughout the state, and many offer great value. These are ideal for families on a budget, and they're also perfect for beginners who want to get into skiing without breaking the bank. Here are some of the best cheap skier destinations in Colorado. Read more about the best Colorado ski resorts.

Tips for Skiing in Colorado

Dealing With Altitude: Skiers who visit Colorado should know that they'll find themselves dealing with altitude issues. Some of the state's best mountain ranges are located near Denver and these mountains are often found at very high elevations. At times, skiers can find themselves above 12,000 feet. For comparison purposes, Sunshine Village, the tallest peak in Canada, reaches an impressive height of 9,895 feet.

If you're traveling to Colorado from low altitudes, you'll likely experience symptoms of high altitudes. You should allow yourself plenty of time to adjust to the higher elevation before heading out onto the snow. Make sure to check out our tips on avoiding Altititude Sickness.

Buying skis: There are a lot of different factors to think about when choosing skis. Here are some tips to help you choose the right ones.

Frequently Asked Questions about Skiing in Colorado

When is the Best Time to Ski in Colorado?

The winter season in Colorado starts in October and ends in March. In general, the best months for winter sports in Colorado are December, January, and February. Springtime activities include hiking, biking, fishing, golfing, and camping. Summertime activities include swimming, boating, and visiting local attractions. Fall activities include football games, pumpkin carving, apple picking, and leaf raking.

Most ski resorts in Colorado usually have enough powder for skiing by Christmas.

If you're planning your skiing vacation and want to get the most out of it, then February would probably be the best time to go. Temperaturas are usually at their peak during this time, so there's plenty of snow left. During January, the weather is often too cold to enjoy the slopes, but by March, the weather has warmed up enough to start enjoying some fun.

Low-elevation ski resorts, like Steamboathave their best weather in February, when they see their most consistent winter snows. High-elevation resorts, like Telluride, usually see their best weather in March.

How far is Vail from Denver?

While there are many skiing destinations near Denver, Vail attracts the largest number of visitors. It’s only about an 80-mile trip from downtown Denver to Vail. Driving takes around 2 hours without any delays. In case of heavy snowfall, driving may take longer due to poor roads.

Interstate 70, which starts in Denver and ends in Vail, passes through the Vail Pass at an elevation of 10,660 ft. During snow storms, the road may be closed to traffic.

If you're driving straight into Denver from DIA, allow yourself an extra 20 minutes, even more if you're headed out during rush hours.

Whether you're driving yourself or looking for a convenient way to get from Denver to Vail, check out our comprehensive list of options. It includes everything from shuttles to buses to trains to planes to ferries.