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Beautiful Colorado is a skier's paradise. With the dramatic slopes of the Rocky Mountains and the Inner-Mountain West's dry powder, Colorado offers the kind of glorious skiing that no snow-bunny wants to miss. This winter, why not plan a trip to the Rocky Mountain state and take to the slopes? You'll find a number of ski mountains and resorts throughout the state.
Colorado offers more than twenty different ski resorts. They range from the large, world-famous resorts like Vail and Telluride to lesser-known gems like Steamboat, Eldora, and Loveland. If you'll be staying in Denver, you may want to frequent the slopes near the Mile-High city, like Breckenridge or Echo Mountain, the state's newest ski area.
You'll find excellent skiing on Denver's Front Range, but if you're looking for a smaller-town experience, head off the beaten path to resorts like Powderhorn, Sunlight, and Monarch Mountain. In small towns like Steamboat Springs you'll find charming downtowns, gorgeous scenery, and fewer crowds on the lifts and slopes.
Other terrific Colorado ski areas include Arapahoe Basin, Beaver Creek, Buttermilk, Crested Butte, Keystone, Durango, Silverton, Ski Cooper, Snowmass, SolVista, Winter Park, Wolf Creek, and Aspen's two resorts, Aspen Highlands and Aspen Mountain.
Even if you aren't an experienced skier, you can still have a great time at the Colorado ski areas. First, consider taking a ski class. You'll find group classes and individual classes at any of the state's resorts, so you can learn at your own pace. Find a class in your age group and get started. If you already have some skiing skills but want to improve, you can take a class with a pro and get some one-on-one tips. The resorts also offer snowboarding classes for anyone who wants to try this exciting sport.
More than Just Skiing
Colorado's ski areas offer much more than just lifts and slopes. You'll find miles of cross-country ski and snowshoeing trails, areas for tubing and sledding, and snowboarding spots. There may be a run with jumps and moguls, or a way to get out into the remote back-country. And of course there's always a cozy lodge with a roaring fire and plenty of hot cocoa and coffee. Many of the ski areas are set above mountain towns that offer fabulous shopping and amazing restaurants. You'll find a wide array of sports shops and sporting equipment retailers, international cuisine, book stores, holiday shops, and specialized boutiques.
A number of ski areas put on special events during the winter. Ask about their night skiing options, holiday specials, and other fun events. You can often spot Santa skiing down the slopes in late December!
If you're in Denver in early November, you won't want to miss the annual Colorado Ski and Snowboard Expo, an event that's held at the Denver Convention Center. You'll find huge bargains on last year's ski and snow equipment as well as clothing, early-season lift ticket deals, and fun giveaways.
As you trek up and down your chosen mountainside, be sure to keep an eye out for Colorado's amazing wildlife. From golden eagles to elk and pronghorn antelope, you'll find that this state is filled with wild creatures. You might see marmots scampering across the snow, catch a glimpse of a snowshoe hare, or see parties of tiny mixed birds gathering birdseed off the ground. Wildlife is so plentiful here, you can even see elk, foxes, and antelope from the highways and state roads.