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Colorado Ski Season 2021-22: Opening Days

A pink sunset behind Breckenridge during the Colorado ski season
Winter sports are a deeply-rooted tradition in Colorado. In fact, they’re more a way of life. As we transition from fall to winter, there’s one thing on every Coloradoan’s mind: the upcoming Colorado ski season.


Maybe you have a longtime favorite spot or you’re looking to tackle a new mountain. Perhaps you just bought an Epic or Ikon pass. In any case, we’ve got you covered. In this guide to the Colorado ski season, you’ll find something for everyone: beginners, casual skiers, experts, and those who want to spend every spare moment on the slopes.

Colorado ski season at Epic Pass resorts

A pink sunset behind Breckenridge during the Colorado ski season

Beaver Creek – November 24

Come for: non-existent lift lines, the famed “Birds of Prey” Olympic downhill run, and complimentary daily Cookie Time — which is exactly what it sounds like.

Breckenridge – November 12

Come for: the vibrant mountain town and the tallest chairlift in North America (Imperial Express SuperChair).

Crested Butte – November 24

Come for: an “old Colorado” feel. The town of Crested Butte doesn’t have a single traffic light and the resort is equally laid-back.

Keystone – October 22

Come for: skiing close to Denver, the massive resort (it’s bigger than Breck!), and a nice long Colorado ski season.

Telluride – November 25

Come for: some of the best skiing in the world, epic views of the rugged San Juans, and quintessential mountain town vibes (plus the free gondola that runs from downtown Telluride directly to the ski village).

Vail – November 12

Come for: the biggest ski resort in Colorado (over 5,300 acres of skiable terrain!).

Psst…looking for more info on the Epic Pass for Colorado ski resorts

Colorado ski season at Ikon Pass resorts

A chair lift and runs with a moody ski during the Colorado ski season

Arapahoe Basin – October 17

Come for: one of the longest Colorado ski seasons and tailgating at “The Beach,” AKA the parking lot!

Aspen Snowmass – November 25

Come for: there’s no reason not to head to Snowmass this Colorado ski season. The resort has something for everyone including families, with off-mountain amenities such as an ice skating rink, alpine coaster, zipline, and rock climbing wall.

Copper Mountain – November 22

Come for: accessibility (Copper Mountain is right off I-70) and terrain pow purists love, with plenty of options for every experience and skill level.

Eldora Mountain Resort – November 19

Come for: a low-key locals’ favorite mountain that’s close to both Denver and Boulder.

Steamboat – November 20

Come for: the legendary “Champagne Powder” snow, a family-friendly atmosphere, and the charming town with plenty of things to do off the slopes.

Winter Park – November 17

Come for: Front range skiing with something for literally every powderhound across its seven unique terrains.

Colorado ski season at other resorts

A few skiers going down a slope with mountains in the background of Colorado ski season

Aspen Highlands – December 11

Come for: a much more laid-back locals’ vibe than other Aspen resorts, plus no crowds and some of the state’s steepest terrain.

Aspen Mountain – November 25

Come for: Challenging, black diamond runs and steep terrain that World Cup finalists train on.

Buttermilk – December 11

Come for: the abundance of beginner-friendly green and blue trails on one side of the mountain, and epic freestyling on the other.

Echo Mountain – November 26

Come for: the closest skiing to Denver (just 36 miles from downtown!).

Granby Ranch – December 11

Come for: learning how to ski or snowboard on the uncrowded slopes, plus awesome night skiing throughout the entire Colorado ski season.

Hesperus – mid-December (TBD)

Come for: the biggest night skiing area in the entire Southwest (80% of the trails are lit!). Bonus: if you buy a season pass, you also get access to several other resorts during Colorado ski season, including Purgatory.

Howelsen Hill – November 22

Come for: skiing with a side of nostalgia. Howelsen Hill is the oldest ski resort in Colorado. It’s been in operation since 1915!

Kendall Mountain – December 17

Come for: super affordable, laid-back, and family-friendly skiing and snowboarding.

Lake City Ski Hill – December (TBD)

Come for: the oldest operating ski lift in Colorado and totally FREE gear rentals!

Loveland Ski Area – mid-November (TBD)

Come for: some of the highest annual snowfall in the state (422 inches on average) and free Snowcat rides.

Monarch Mountain – mid-November (TBD)

Come for: skiing right on the Continental Divide Pass (hello, epic views!) and no lines or crowds.

Powderhorn – November 26

Come for: skiing atop Grand Mesa, the largest flat-top mountain in the world.

Purgatory – November 20

Come for: some of the most picturesque skiing in the state, smack in the middle of the San Juans.

Silverton – November 25

Come for: expert-level skiing. Literally all of Silverton’s terrain is designated expert and the mountains are the steepest in the Rockies.

Ski Cooper – December 8

Come for: authentic, as-it-used-to-be skiing. Ski Cooper uses only all-natural snow, making it paradise for pow purists.

Sunlight – December 10

Come for: a hidden gem, locals’ favorite vibe with no crowds.

Wolf Creek – October 17

Come for: the most snow in Colorado — literally. Wolf Creek gets a whopping 450 inches of snowfall on average during the Colorado ski season, the most in the state!


Whew — that’s an exhaustive list! Before you head out, be sure to check our blog posts for ideas on other ways to get outside in Colorado. Also, have fun out there and be safe!

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