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Arapahoe Basin

 

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Trail Map
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Transportation
Transportation
AIR TRANSPORTATION

 

Denver International Airport 

 
LOCAL TRANSPORTATION
 
 

Lodging
Lodging
 
Name Description Maximum Occupancy Price Range

Alpine Slopes Lodge 

 

 

The newest 60 room hotel in Keystone, the closest accommodation to A Basin. Complimentary continental breakfast is served during ski season and skier shuttle.  Hot tub on site. 

Extra person charges may apply

 

$79 and up

 

Keystone Resort 

 

Zero to six bedroom units available with pool, hot tub, fitness center and skier shuttle. 

Extra person charges may apply 

$105 and up 

Key to the Rockies Lodging Co.

 

Studio, condo, and homes with pool, hot tub, fitness center, ski shuttle and other amenities. 

Extra person charges may apply

$165 and up 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

REAL ESTATE
 
 
 
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Arapahoe Basin
Description:

Arapahoe Basin is located on the Pacific edge of the Continental Divide and it is one of the highest lift-served ski areas in North America, with a peak lift-served elevation of over 12,000'. With this elevation, A-Basin normally remains open until mid-June and on occasion, even July and August.Majestic mountains surround a natural bowl at the Basin, providing a dramatic setting for skiing and snowboarding above the treeline. The resort is a favorite among skiers and riders who enjoy the warm, sunny days of spring and sometimes even summer skiing.While there are no lodging facilities at A-Basin, accommodations are available at Keystone, six miles west, and a free shuttle bus service is provided between the two areas.

Details:
DetailValue
Lifts-Surface Lifts-Magic carpet1
Lifts-Chair Lifts-Double3
Lifts-Chair Lifts-Triple1
Lifts-Chair Lifts-Quad1
Lifts-Chair Lifts-High speed quad1
Lifts-Total number of lifts7
Lifts-Total lift capacity10,700/hr.
Trails-1-Beginner10%
Trails-2-Intermediate30%
Trails-3-Advanced37%
Trails-4-Expert only23%
Trails-Total105
Runs-Longest run1.5 miles
General-Base elevation10,780'
General-Vertical drop2270'
General-Total area in bounds900 acres
General-Snow making coverage125 acres
Models:
Model Name/TypeMPNEAN/UPC

Posted

Pros: Small, but huge terrain variety, off-piste, original lodge, no commercialism, mid-mountain sun-bathing, lower mountain "beach"

Cons: Muddy parking lot in spring

A-Basin in always our go-to when returning to Colorado.  Living in Summit County for a few years, we skied everywhere, but A-Basin is our hot fave.

 

From the Walls and Pallavacini to the gentle runs mid-mountain, and nice wide groomers from mid to lower, it has something to offer everyone.   

 

The lodge is living history.  The mid-mountain cafeteria, barbecue deck and laying back on the deck chairs in the sun with all the peaks looming above you is beautiful.  And the beach down below is almost a reason in and of itself to get there in spring - start early and finish early - take in a couple of refreshing beers out on the snow while you put your feet up in the afternoon sun and watch the other skiers coming and going.

Posted

Pros: outstanding expert terrain, low key vibe, park close to lifts, moderate prices

Cons: high elevation, exposed, no slopeside lodging

Scenic and steep, A-Basin opened for skiing in 1946 and is deservedly referred to as The Legend. The retro A-Frame base lodge once served as a missile testing facility. The massive interior wood beam framework could withstand a direct hit from a missile or an avalanche.

A-Basin is perched on the western flank of the Continental Divide just across from Loveland Pass. The first thing you’ll notice descending from the pass on US Highway 6 is the hike-to extreme terrain of the precipitous 13,000 foot East Wall. It towers over a choice selection of lift served options from corduroy cruisers on the Lenawee and Norway Faces, to world class black diamond bump runs in the Pallavicini trail pod, to the wide open ridges of Montezuma Bowl. An expert would never tire of this place, but there are also enough easy runs to provide a novice with a couple days of fun.

On sunny days rip cord down sweet upper-intermediate groomers off Norway and Lenawee chairs, both with about 1,000 feet of vertical. There are nice black diamond chutes off Founders Ridge in the Montezuma Bowl, also known as Zuma Cornice. They have a fun 10’ cornice drop with an awesome backdrop of Rocky Mountain vistas. During low visibility days try skirting snow fences or dip into glades like Torreys in lower Montezuma Bowl or Cabin under the Lenawee Mtn chair.  Enjoy a lunch break in the relatively new mid-mtn Black Mtn Lodge.

The impressively steep Pallavicini trail pod on the front face of the mountain contains about 20 double black diamond runs and is served by its own chairlift rising 1,329 vertical feet. Unrelenting steeps with serious moguls, this is very stout skiing!  Of course, the legit experts climb East Wall for extreme routes.

If you’re looking to test your skills or just dislike the hassle and pretension of larger resorts, check out the hardcore, yet friendly scene at A-Basin. Its 900 acres represent a condensed version of the cream of Colorado. Lift served skiing takes place between approximately 10,800 and 12,500 feet. Hiking the East Wall can add another 500 vertical feet. The high elevation and mostly northern exposure make A-Basin one of the premier spring skiing destinations in the US with lifts routinely spinning into the month of June.


Posted

Pros: Challenging Terrain, Old School Vibe

Cons: Lack of Express Lifts

Like the title says, it's a true skier's mountain.  A Basin is right on the divide, so the weather is often windy and snowy, and the light is typically flat.  They pack a lot of good, tough skiing into a relatively small acreage - 70-80% of the terrain on the upper lifts will be challenging to most skiers, and that doesn't even include the extreme areas like the East Wall.  The largely ungroomed blues off the Lenawee and Norway lifts will challenge any solid intermediate, especially if you're used to the immaculately-groomed blue and "black" cruisers of the Midwest and East.  Be sure to pay close attention to the trail signage and numerous ill-defined forks in that area, especially if you are a low-to-mid intermediate, or else you're liable to end up in some mogul fields you may not want to be in.  The experts (and, no doubt, some self-styled experts wink.gif) head over to the Pali lift for the majority of A Basin's legendary suicidal steeps and chutes.  Montezuma Bowl was not open when we skied there on 2/10/2013, and in fact opened for the first time all season the following day.  It seems that the Monte lift and terrain are infrequently open during lean snow years, which is a shame.  Some will disagree, and I do honestly enjoy the old-timey nature of A Basin when compared to the condos and glitz of the other Summit & Eagle Co. resorts, but they really could use just one more high-speed quad on the front side, perhaps replacing the Lenawee lift.  Frills are starting to creep in just a bit, as there is a relatively new mid-mountain cafeteria with a pricey bar and BBQ menu that's probably a byproduct of the Vail acquisition, but for the most part A Basin is still about as minimalist as it gets these days.

Posted

Pros: price, terrain, groovy vibe

Cons: smaller, watch out for the sharks

A-Basin is not that big, but its terrain packs a punch.  This is not a mountain for cruising groomers.  This is a mountain for finding your own line through the rocks, trees and rolling terrain.  or over the edge of a cornice.  or down the bumpy steeps of pali.  If Colorado is having a decent snow-year then you can bet the snow is terrific at A-basin, where the elevation and angle keeps the snow soft.  Also, the season pass is one of the cheapest in CO, or anywhere.

 

I was there a couple days ago in white-out conditions, which is nuts because above treeline the light is so flat your skiing is all reactive, especially on the rolling, ungroomed terrain.  But the next day there was several inches of fresh on a bluebird morning, and it was glory.  We picked out lines all over, working our way around from the parts of the mountain easy to get to and then over to the harder parts.  Pretty sweet looking at our own tracks going up the lift over and over.  Then today I was there with my daughter, who is learning to ski.  We didn't really make it much beyond the magic carpet, but she made some progress and had fun and that was great too.

 

People knock the fact that there isn't a resort attached to the ski area, but who needs a resort when Keystone is only 5 miles down the road and Summit County is loaded with Apres?  I'd rather smell the bbq coming from "the beach" along the front row of the parking lot, eat my sack lunch at 12,400 feet in the patrol cabin refuge, and get cheap cocktails or a pint from the excellent beer selection.  

Posted

Pros: Extreme Terrain

Cons: Long lifts, old chairs, WINDY

Meh.  Not all that good.  Much better just down the road.

Posted

Pros: Easy to get to if Loveland pass is open, great mix of skiing for all

Cons: No on mountain accommodation, can be hard to get a table to eat at times.

Learned to ski in Australia on short mountains with lots of ice, crud etc.  A Basin reminds of Mt Hotham in Victoria Australia, plenty to offer, lots of enthusiastic locals, great staff and just a good place to ski (much better snow than home).    Parking is easy and most days if you are there by 9am you can park in the lower park.   Was us there last weekend.  2 Lifts and top to bottom skiing on groomed snow.  Mainly hard pack with some sugar on top.   

 

Mid Mountain lodge for food, drink and toilets is handy place to recover ( i am over 50 and need recovery time) as well as meet friends.   Lot's of people and families take up lunch and nibblies, you see Mum's sitting in the lodge all day reading

 

Whilst I skied Breck more last year than A Basin I prefer A Basin, size and feel.  This year will get out the back of Montezuma and let it rip.  My 19 yr old boarder can just go where dad drives.

 

 

Posted

Pros: Steep terrain for CO and great views

Cons: Intermediate terrain is limited and snow coverage can be shoddy

A-basin is one of the first resort along the I-70 corridor from Denver.  It does not attract many out-of-state destination tourists and is more popular with locals.  It cost less and is smaller than the mega-resorts in Colorado.  It has steep terrain that can be accessed by traversing.  The few times I have been there the snow coverage has not been that great, which makes the steeper terrain exposed and un-skiable.  It is a fun place to go for a day trip if you are staying in Denver, or to experience some variety if you are based in the Summit valley area.  Locals also like skiing in the back-country off of Loveland pass, which I thought was better terrain than A-basin. 

Posted

Pros: Long Season, Easy to Navigate

Cons: Wind Exposed, Limited Size

The Legend!

Posted

Pros: Good Terrain, proximity to Denver, Vertical

Cons: None really

Arapahoe Basin "A-Bay" is an awesome little mountain. It's about an hour and a half drive from Denver due west on I-70 to the Loveland Pass exit. The skiing is steep and intense, especially the Palavacinni lift and the Headwall. The new Monteczuma bowel is vast and after a dump, has some sweet pow shots. There are not hotels or glitzy bars/restaurants here. It's a skiers/riders mountain without all the show and tell....in other words, it aint, vail! On spring weekends, "the beach" the front row of the main parking lot turns into a huge party. Frizbee's fly everywhere, dogs leaping around, kegs and grills in abundance, music wafting from cars, portable hot-tubs on occasion, etc. etc. It's a great scene with a chill vibe. It's kind of the little brother with attitude to Alta's bigger more sophisticated crowd but both areas pack a mean punch and are local favorites and areas everyone needs to put on the list.