Winter Park's ski area is impressive. It was developed (and is still owned) by the nearby city of Denver for the recreation of its citizens, who pour in on weekends and powder days, though it has also become a destination resort in its own right..

Winter Park started life in the 19th century, when the Rio Grande railway was built; workers climbed the slopes to ski down.

The resort is comprised of two interconnected mountains - Winter Park and Mary Jane. The latter in particular has a reputation for some seriously challenging terrain, with some of the most challenging moguls in the world. By contrast Winter Park hosts the beginner and intermediate terrain, increasing the suitability of the resort for family skiers. Winter Park's policy of grooming hardly any black runs, ever, means the step up from blue to black runs is a big one The resort has a very high altitude of 2745m, giving it a relatively long season, as well as improving the snow conditions. The approach road from Denver over the Continental Divide at Berthoud Pass is spectacularly high (3450m) and Alpine in character, with very un-American hairpin bends. Having a car can be useful for day trips to resorts such as Copper Mountain, Keystone and Breckenridge.  

Pros

The best snowfall record of Colorado's major resorts

Quiet on weekdays

Leading resort for teaching people with disabilities to ski and ride

Largely free of ski-resort glitz

Cons

Nearly all steep slopes are never groomed, so always mogulled

Village' at the lift base is still very limited, and dead in the evening

Town is a bus ride away and has few shops and restaurants

Some tough terrain is prone to closure by bad weather

Getting there

  • Denver airport: 1.5 hours
  • Denver train station: 2.5 hours

Good For

Ability
  • Advanced
  • Beginner
  • Intermediate
In Resort
  • Family Friendly
  • Ski To Door
On Slope
  • Boarder
  • Fast Lifts
  • No Queues
  • Snow Reliability
  • Terrain Parks

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