Colorado's Best Mountain Towns and Ski Resorts

Colorado Ski Area Openings and Updates 2017/18

Colorado Ski Area Openings and Updates 2017/18 – Get ready for the season! New experiences, chairlifts, terrain, lodging, and dining options are among the many improvements you will find at Colorado mountain resorts and ski areas.

Arapahoe Basin Ski Area-

With one of the only terrain expansions in the country, Arapahoe Basin is adding 468 new acres over two years with the expansion into the Beavers and Steep Gullies. For the 2017-18 season, 371 acres of most difficult and extreme terrain will be open; guests will need to hike back to the Pallavicini chair. A four-person lift will be installed for the 2018-19 season, and two more intermediate trails will be added in the Beavers.

The rental shop has undergone a remodel this summer and Free device charging stations and public wifi throughout the base area and at Black Mountain Lodge is now available. arapahoebasin.com

Aspen Snowmass-

Aspen Snowmass will host Olympic qualifying events when the U.S. Grand Prix stops in Snowmass January 10–January 14, 2018. U.S. Snowboard Team and U.S. Freeski Team athletes will be competing to punch their tickets to February’s Pyeongchang Winter Olympic Games.

Snowmass will celebrate its 50th Anniversary all season long including $6.50 lift tickets on December 15, 2017. This was the original price for a lift ticket on opening day in 1967. Celebrations will include a 50th Anniversary Golden Gala, monthly firework displays and other festive events.

The Breathtaker mountain coaster will open at Snowmass Mountain in December 2017. The mountain coaster will drop guests more than 400 vertical feet on a mile of turning track and be open year-round. aspensnowmass.com 

Beaver Creek-

To improve the experience for beginner and intermediate skiers and further establish Beaver Creek as the World’s best luxury resort for families, Beaver Creek Resort is debuting a new 200-acre family learning area accessed by a new high-speed lift. Red Buffalo Park, located at the mountain’s highest elevation, 11,440 feet, provides 13 trails designated as a family adventure zone and features family-friendly amenities. beavercreek.com

Breckenridge-

Get ready for an improved Falcon SuperChair! The chairlift is being upgraded from a quad to a high-speed, six-passenger lift, offering an easier and faster ride up to Peak 10. Breck’s Ten Mile Station is going a little “Willy Wonka” this winter season, adding an old-fashioned sweet shop. breckenridge.com

Cooper-

Cooper’s new mountaintop yurt lodge will be open all season with delicious food, drinks and a large deck with stunning panoramic views, it’s a great spot to stop for a bite to eat. Cooper will also host four Moonlight Mountain Top Yurt Dinners on the first Saturday of each month from January through April 2018. The resort will celebrate its 75th Anniversary with a birthday party on New Year’s Eve with cake, balloons, a torchlight parade & more. skicooper.com

Copper Mountain-

Copper Mountain will host Olympic qualifying events December 6-10, 2017 when U.S. athletes compete in the halfpipe and big air events during the U.S. Grand Prix. Visitors can enjoy a new lift and lodge, the Kokomo Express Lift and Koko’s Hut. The lift will serve beginner terrain in the West Village, while the lodge will offer seating, casual dining and more, complete with a large outdoor deck and sweeping panoramas of Copper Mountain and Tenmile Range.

Copper will also debut the Rocky Mountain Coaster this fall with an overall length of 5,800 feet and a vertical drop of 430 feet, the mountain coaster will be a thrilling year-round experience for guests. Throughout the season, visitors will be able to leave their passes in their pockets as Copper is adding RFID technology to eight mountain access lifts.

The Center Village will welcome three new restaurants: Toast & Co., a laid-back space for savory breakfast, brunch or evening libations, Downhill Dukes, where the menu features dog friendly items, and Ten Mile Tavern, an inviting restaurant and taproom featuring rustic modern interior décor, an indoor/outdoor fireplace, walk-up bar and elevated patio space for guests to gather. coppercolorado.com

Crested Butte Mountain Resort-

For the 2017-18 season Crested Butte is enhancing the guest experience for beginners by re-grading the teaching terrain and introducing a new adult beginner area. Guests looking for a break from the slopes can enjoy a slice from the new pizza oven at Paradise on Crested Butte.

A new program, CB North Face Guides, will help expert skiers and riders navigate the extreme terrain of the resort including the famed North Face. Crested Butte will host its annual Christmas Eve celebration, an evening complete with a torchlight parade and Santa Claus coming down the mountain in a sleigh pulled by a snowcat.  skicb.com

Echo Mountain Resort-

Echo Mountain will open for the 2017-18 season with improved access to tree skiing areas at the resort. There will be wider trails to accommodate beginner skiers and riders and a new magic carpet in the beginner area to aid with lessons and those just learning how to ski or snowboard. echomountainresort.com

Eldora Mountain Resort-

Eldora is introducing the brand-new Alpenglow Express six-person high speed detachable lift. This lift will cut a 15-minute ride down to four minutes, making it easier to ski more vertical each day and helping powder hounds catch early morning turns before heading back to the office. The Indian Peaks Lodge will also have free wifi and a new snowcat will provide a better grooming experience. eldora.com

Granby Ranch-

This winter Granby Ranch is expanding its cross-country skiing trails and adding new snow school lessons with Chris Anthony, an international competitor in both alpine racing and big mountain skiing.  granbyranch.com

Hesperus Ski Area-

Hesperus will install additional lights to increase night skiing terrain for the 2017-18 season. The ski area will re-open the rope tow and install a new yurt, to provide additional indoor space for guests. The rental shop will be expanded for a more customer-friendly experience. ski-hesperus.com

Keystone Resort-

The Montezuma Express Lift, a primary lift on Dercum Mountain that serves popular intermediate and beginner ski terrain, has been replaced with a high-speed, six-passenger chair that will increase efficiency and capacity by up to 25 percent, while improving skier and snowboarder circulation on the mountain. keystoneresort.com

Loveland Ski Area-

To celebrate its 80th year of operations, Loveland will offer snowcat skiing in Dry Gulch for the first time this season. Loveland will also continue the popular Mountaintop Matrimony event on Valentine’s Day. skiloveland.com

Monarch Mountain-

This winter Monarch will launch a new and improved website and feature improved cellular service at the mountain.  skimonarch.com

Purgatory-

A new mountain coaster will be accessible from the base area and operate year-round. The coaster will be 4,000 feet in length with a 300 foot-vertical drop, and will feature eight switchbacks and one loop, giving guests another fun activity snow or shine.

Purgatory is also expanding its terrain with new intermediate and expert trails on the back- and front-sides of the mountain, and will add new gladed tree skiing. The triple chairlift, Needles Lift 6, will offer a new mid-way loading zone to provide an easier way to access terrain for ski teams, terrain park users, and skiers or riders who want to take laps on the frontside of the mountain. The resort will feature new snowmaking infrastructure including increased pumping capacity and more energy efficient snow guns. skipurg.com  

Powderhorn-

An increase and improve glade skiing acreage has been added at the resort. Powderhorn will also host its annual New Year’s Eve fireworks and torchlight parade to welcome in the New Year. powderhorn.com

Silverton-

Guests at Silverton will be able to celebrate powder days of 50 inches or more with ski area provided snorkels throughout the season. Silverton has also revamped its season pass offerings to include an Unguided Spring Pass with 10 new partner mountains for only $149. silvertonmountain.com

Steamboat Resort-

Significant improvements to its gondola will provide a faster, smoother and more efficient experience for guests. The Outlaw Mountain Coaster, will now operate year-round and descends more than 400 vertical feet with a riding length of more than 6,000 linear feet, making it the longest mountain coaster in North America. steamboat.com

Sunlight Mountain Resort-

Sunlight is building on its popular Ski, Swim, Stay Package by adding two new lodging partners in nearby Carbondale, Colorado.Sunlight is also holding elections for its Mini-Mayor, adding to its snow grooming equipment and continuing the Slope & Soak 4-pack package. Sunlight is relaunching the acclaimed Sunny 700 with new handcrafted Sunny 700 skis made by Meier Skis. sunlightmtn.com

Telluride Ski Resort-

Celebrating its 45th Anniversary, Telluride is continuing an ongoing multi-year, multi-million-dollar investment in snowmaking upgrades and technology. In 2017-18 this will include expanding the grooming fleet and investing in a new dual-purpose project that serves as a golf course practice facility in the summer months and a 15-acre terrain-based learning area during the winter ski season. Telluride will also continue refurbishing the Peaks Hotel, including upgrades and refinements to the hotel’s spa. tellurideskiresort.com

Vail-

The Northwoods Express Lift (#11) will debut as a six-passenger lift during the 2017-2018 winter season. The new lift will mark the 10th lift replacement in the last 11 years at Vail. The Arrabelle at Vail Square, A RockResort, celebrates 10 years in January 2018. A celebration of the anniversary will take place in December and special activities will be held in Vail Square vail.com

Winter Park Resort

The Winter Park Express, the train service between Denver’s Union Station and Winter Park Resort that was reintroduced last year will expand service. The addition of three First Friday trips will give guests a total of 27 round-trips to choose from. Prices on select departures have been lowered to $29 one-way, providing additional cost savings for those looking to travel to the slopes by train. The Winter Park Village will feature a renovated rental shop and a new retail location, reducing wait times on busy rental days. There are two new snowcats to increase grooming efficiency, 4,500 new feet of snowmaking pipe and 15 new snow guns to improve early season snowmaking. A new trail from the top of the Zephyr Express Lift to the Mary Jane Trail will allow easier access from the Winter Park side of the mountain to the Mary Jane side. winterparkresort.com

Wolf Creek Ski Area

Wolf Creek will open the 2017-18 season with the Lynx Lift, a new covered, conveyor lift that will service beginner terrain, but also help intermediate and advanced skiers access the Elma and Alberta lifts. The ski area will expand its snowmaking capacity with new high-efficiency fan guns and add a new snowcat for grooming operations. A new point-of-sale ticketing system will make the ticketing and lesson purchasing process quicker for guests and allow season pass holders to go directly to lift. wolfcreekski.com

Colorado's Best Mountain Towns and Ski Resorts