John and I both grew up in the southeastern United States and had never explored skiable mountains. When we moved to Colorado, it seemed like everyone asked us, “Do you ski or snowboard?” and “Do you have the Epic or Ikon Pass?” Resort skiing or snowboarding seemed like everyone’s favorite hobby, and it was a bit of a turnoff for us.
Resort Fun = Resort Prices
You can look into both passes and compare the two on epicorikon.com to see if they work for you!
Single day passes seemed to be the best strategy for us to ski when we wanted but not be obligated to ski for the season sake of justifying the investment in a season pass. That being said, single day lift passes range in price and can be upwards of $200 depending on the day, so we pick our days carefully.
Single-day passes on Valentine’s Day weekend 2021:
Steamboat Springs: $129-219
Loveland Ski Area: $89
To rent or to buy?
In general, getting into the sport has been quite a process for us, but every time we hit the slopes, we love it more and more as we become more comfortable on skis and on the mountains. We’ve been out each of the four winters that we have lived in Colorado and have decided to write about our experiences, as total newbies, at some of the best ski resorts in the world:
Due to our skill level, we did not have a full-fledged experience of the Breckenridge mountains. We stayed on one lift at the base of Peak 8 all day, but we didn’t care. We skied until our bodies hurt then ended the day with drinks at the base with our friends! It wasn’t the best day of skiing, because we were pretty banged up at the end, but we enjoyed every minute of the ride!
Reserve your own day on the mountain on, keystoneresort.com
You can read all about how fun the WinterWonderGrass Festival is here!
Howelson Hill is a famous skiing area, but we didn’t know that at first. All we knew was that it was $25 to ski for the day compared to the $180 at the resort. We quickly bought tickets, rented skis at a nearby store, and hit the lift.
Howelson is a tiny hill with its main focus being cross country trails and ramps for jumping. That being said, it was perfect for us. We spent all day on a few short runs practicing and perfecting our skiing skills. We wish we would have found this place the first time we went skiing, because it was perfect for beginners and there was hardly anyone around.
Our second year at WinterWonderGrass, we made sure to buy our tickets early to get special pricing on lift tickets with our festival passes. This year, we were determined not to miss out on the big resort!
Steamboat really changed the way we ski, and we owe a lot to these mountains and their “champagne powder” snow. We also owe a lot to our friends who pushed us to ski terrain we’d never tried.
Organize your own weekend in Steamboat at, www.steamboat.com
John and I have both been to Aspen several times, but we have never been on the Aspen mountains together. Aspen has four mountains: Snowmass, Buttermilk, Aspen Mountain, and Aspen Highlands. With our combined experience, we have been to three of the four.
You can learn more about each Aspen Snowmass Mountain on their website, aspensnowmass.com
The terrain was beautiful, though, and all of the people were very kind. They gave me tips and tricks every time I came through the lift line. I’ll stick to skiing, but I can’t wait to be back on Snowmass!
The same weekend that I went to Snowmass, I hit up Buttermilk. This time, I ventured out of the terrain parks and beginners’ areas to try to give snowboarding a second chance.
It was a difficult day on the board, but the bacon made it all worth it!
Telluride is one of the most beautiful towns in Colorado, no doubt about it - but the experience I had skiing there was one of the worst I have ever experienced.
I chose to ski here in very early season, knowing that things were not going to be 100% open, but was greeted with peak-season pricing for just ONE open run. Then after paying this outrageous price, I was berated on social media for expressing my regrets.
After this terrible experience, I now have a lack-luster view of the entire town and it's residents. While it may be a beautiful place, it is EXPENSIVE and the residents are extremely protective of their mountains.
If you want to learn more about this day in Telluride watch my video below and if my review doesn't deter you from going you can read about things to do in Telluride in every season in my blog post, here!
Another place I skied early season in 2023 was Arapahoe Basin, they though, unlike Telluride, were giving a great discount for the early season! They offer a 3-pack of days from October to December for just $99, or single day passes for $60.
Because I went early season I wasn't able to explore much, but people love this mountain and based my short day there, I can understand why!
See more from my day at Arapahoe Basin below:
I personally, and very strongly believe, this is the BEST ski area in all of Colorado. Wolf Creek gets the absolute most snow in all of Colorado on average each year, and the ski area is remarkable.
Plus, they offer "Customer Appreciation Days" or "Locals" days every year, making it one of the more affordable places to ski.
The trees are the most fun areas to explore and I wish it was closer to Denver so we could go more, but it's quite an experience to make the trek all the way down towards Pagosa Springs to ski at this wonderful place.
See more from my new favorite place to ski in Colorado below:
Loveland Ski Area:
We started coming to Loveland back in 2020 and just absolutely fell in love. The mountain isn't too steep so we felt we were able to learn how to ski very easily here. Plus, since it's not on the Epic or Ikon pass it is never as crowded as some of the other large resorts.
We finally feel like we know what we are doing on the mountain, and Loveland really helped boost our confidence.
See more from Loveland Ski Area in some of my videos below and subscribe to my YouTube Channel - The Traveling Tacos - for recent updates!
See more Colorado Guides below!
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Talkin' 'bout Tacos
I'm Taylor, aka Tacos! I am sharing my journeys and experiences from across the world hoping to inspire travel and adventure in all who read!