Here are our recommendations for a true Colorado winter experience:
Head up to Copper Mountain, right off of I-70 to get a true Colorado native experience. With fewer tourists on the mountain, lift lines are generally short so you can get a lot of runs in. Copper features runs for everyone, from cruiser greens to powdery back bowls.
Winter Park/Mary Jane
Skip Summit County traffic and head up and over Berthoud Pass to Winter Park and Mary Jane. This large resort features runs for beginners and experts. The Mary Jane side of the resort is not for the faint of heart, but offers a truly exceptional experience on powder days
One of the closest resorts to Denver, A-Basin is Colorado’s highest ski resort. With more challenging runs and steeper slopes, this is not a stop for beginners. Ski with locals and hang out on The Beach, a parking lot for early risers backing up to three lower-mountain chairlifts. It is a fantastic spot to kick back with friends and family between runs.
As a true resort town, Breckenridge is a wonderful stop for the whole family. Send the kids to ski school, grandma and grandpa can relax in the lodge and cruise the town while mom and dad and teenagers hit the slopes. The resort features 5 peaks, spans 2,908 acres, has 4 terrain parks and North America’s highest chairlift, the Imperial Express. A great place to spend a weekend, or just drive up for a day of fun. It is also one of the most popular resorts for tourists, so it can be busy.
Tubing and Sledding
Colorado Adventure Park
Colorado Adventure Park in Winter Park is an awesome stop for the whole family. They offer tubing and snowmobiling on kid friendly 120cc snow machines. All you need is your snow clothes. You can pay for tubing by the hour and the warming hut has wifi, hot chocolate and adult beverages. It’s the perfect place for parents to hang out and stay warm while kids have the time of their lives.
Located in Breckenridge, this park features a fantastic sledding hill. Bring your own sled and be prepared to climb back up the hill. This is the only sledding hill in town so get there early to enjoy the best runs. Warm your legs up with a few runs on a sled and then head on over to the mountain for some excellent skiing.
Ken Caryl Sledding Hill
If you aren’t looking to trek up into the mountains but are still looking for a fun time in the snow, check out the Ken Caryl Sledding Hill, part of the Foothills Park and Recreation District. This undeveloped park features excellent topography and the north facing hill has traditionally been used as a sledding hill. Bring your own sled and be ready to hike up the steep hill. Totally worth it!
Evergreen’s 55 acre lake is a classic Colorado winter stop. Before you head up, call 720-880-1391 to ensure weather conditions are desirable for outdoor ice skating. The lake offers skate rentals so you only need warm clothes. Experience this a classic winter tradition by going out for an afternoon or eveing of skating at the Evergreen Lake.
Southwest Rink at Skyline Park
This rink is only open until February 15th so hurry over. Bring your own skates to skate for free in the heart of downtown or rent a pair of skates for just $2! The rink, sponsored by the Downtown Denver Partnership and Southwest airlines, is set up in Skyline Park at 16th and Arapahoe just behind the clock tower.
YMCA of the Rockies
Located in Estes Park, the YMCA of the Rockies has two lakes to skate on. Pick up your skates from the Sweet Memorial Program Building. There’s no deposit if you’re staying at the lodge, so consider making a weekend of it or purchase a day pass for just $20. While you’re there you can also enjoy snowshoeing and if you’re lodging you can keep yourself busy in the craft room or at the spa.
Whatever you do, take time this season to get outside and see what our great state has to offer!