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Where to ski in Colorado?

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 

My boyfriend and I are planning a 4-day ski trip (4 days of skiing, 6 days total with travel) in late December/early January. I have skied in Colorado with my family and friends from Denver several times before, but have never planned a ski trip myself. I've skied Winter Park a lot, and I have also skied Copper, Loveland, Breckenridge, Keystone, Vail, and Beaver Creek. I have always had good skiing experiences in Colorado, so I think that I want to go there again for this trip, but I am not sure which resort we should go to.


I would like to stick to one or possibly two (close) resorts since we are only skiing for four days.


My boyfriend is an intermediate skier but has not skied in several years. I like skiing blacks and glades. So I am thinking it would be good to go to a resort with some variety.


We are also on a bit of a tight budget, so places that have cheaper or discounted lodging and lift tickets would be preferred. I know that my family has gotten discounts in the past, but I don't know where to look for them. Our dates are also somewhat flexible (dates we can ski are December 28 - Jan 3), so if there are cheaper dates, that would also be good to know.


If anyone has any suggestions on where we should go or how to get good discounts, I would appreciate it!



post #2 of 11

Welcome to Epic.  Your timing is a bit off in terms of some of the best lift ticket deals and lodging will be tight until after NYE.  I have availability starting Dec 30 in Frisco and may consider renting rooms out individually B & B style for the NYE weekend


For day tickets, Loveland is probably the best at $59.  I think A-Basin will be $74 but comes down to around $60/day on multi-day tix.  One option would be to combine the two.  They are nice areas, but smaller than mega-resorts like Vail and don't have their own lodging.  Also, both are very high and neither is the best for storm day skiing.  For that you are better off at Keystone, Copper and other less exposed resorts with more tree protection.  You could google for some discounts, but many of the best deals just ended.  Search here for more info on specific resorts.


Expect heavy crowds until Jan 1.  Everywhere will be crowded until then, but Loveland, Beaver Creek and Copper tend to have fewer crowds in general (along with some of the more remote resorts).


Where are you coming from and how are you getting to CO?  I am most familiar with the I-70 resorts near Denver and Aspen, but depending on your travel arrangements, a place like Wolf Creek might be possible.

post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 

Thanks for your response!


We are traveling from Missouri and are planning on driving, so the I-70 resorts would be good. 


I realize this isn't the best time for deals and crowds, but unfortunately the only other time we might have is March 25 - 31.


Lodging in Frisco would definitely work for Loveland, ABasin, and Copper, assuming we could find parking and a shuttle or something. Chalet Frisco looks very nice. Please let me know if you decide to rent out the rooms individually and what those rates would be. I think it is likely that we will end up choosing to ski in that area.


I hadn't considered Loveland too much but I know my friends in Denver really like both Loveland and ABasin. The only time I went to Loveland it was stormy and very cold and we went home after lunch, but I would certainly give it another try.


I have probably been considering Copper the most. The best deal I have seen so far on lift tickets is the 4 pack at Copper for $169. My skiing experiences at Copper were also good. There was always lots of powder the few times I skied there, but it wasn't quite as fun as Beaver Creek.


My mom also told me to look up the entertainment coupon book or that I might be able to get discounted tickets at some gas stations, but I'm not sure if these are the best routes for discounts.

post #4 of 11

That's easy,  everything you mention about skiing and your husbands ability is Winterpark.  Jane side (challenger lift) will be least crowded.   I have skied there on New years day, and it wasn't bad at all.    Look around town for a deal.  Or take Mefree up on that offer and ski Copper, Keystone and Abasin.    

post #5 of 11

I like all the local mountains, but Copper is certainly one of my favorites.  I thought it had ended, but see they are still selling their $169 4 pack.  This is a very good deal BUT I think it needs to be RENEWED online or, for first timers, PURCHASED IN PERSON BY DECEMBER 11.  


All the areas have parking (free and A-Basin, Loveland and the outer lot at Copper, Breckenridge, Keystone and Beaver Creek).  From Frisco, the Free Summit Stage runs directly to Copper and Breckenridge with connecting service to Keystone and A-Basin.  Expect the 29-31 to be crowded on both the bus and parking (especially if you get a late start).  I usually go to the bus stop at 6th and Main, but to beat the holiday crowds, you could drive to the Frisco transit center and park there to be first on the bus- might be easier than driving to the resort for Copper or Breck.


The advantage to coming now is being able to spend NYE somewhere special with a lot going on (Copper and other places do fireworks, etc) and potentially take a second trip at the end of March.  If I was only doing 1 trip simply for the skiing, it would be the end of March and not NYE.  


Your mom has some good possible suggestions for discounts, BUT some coupons are likely not offered or blacked out between X-Mas and NY.


New Years individual room pricing for Chalet Frisco would be $149-199 depending on which bedroom (lower level bedrooms $149, main level $179 and Top $199).  Check in would be after 4pm on the 30th as we have a group checking out that day.  You can PM if interested.



post #6 of 11
Thread Starter 

Good catch on the 4 pack deal. That's too bad that I can't order it online. Do you know if I could have one of my friends in Denver buy the 4 packs for me? It seems like that would not be possible; it sounds more like a season pass type deal where only 1 person can use the tickets and the person going to use them has to buy them.


I want to do the trip now because I don't know that we can go for sure in March. It would be a shame to wait and then miss out completely if we can't go in March.


I found a couple more deals by looking around online some more. $69 (possibly $59) tickets for Copper, and 4 of 6 days Keystone & ABasin (2 days at Breck, Vail, or Beaver Creek) for $288. I didn't see valid dates for the $288 offer, so that worries me that it would expire before I could buy it at that price.


The $288 deal sounds pretty sweet, though. It'd be fun to get to ski Keystone, ABasin, Beaver Creek, and Vail or Breck. I don't know if my boyfriend would be up to driving around that much not knowing where we were going each day. I also don't want the traveling to cause us to get late starts skiing. If we just did Copper, we could just stay at the base of the lifts and not have to worry about transportation at all, but it'd be about $230-$270/night to stay at Copper. It seems like it would probably be better to save money and stay in Frisco and drive or take a bus to Copper or wherever we decide to ski.

post #7 of 11

That't a pretty good deal on the 4 day tix as it can be hard to get VR discounts during the year...where did you find that and the Copper deal?  


If any of your friends knows someone who works at Copper, in the past they gave employees a chance to buy 5 packs for friends (paid in advance by mid-December but could be picked up or used all season) for something like $139.


If you KNEW you were coming back in March, the A-Basin bonus pass is still on sale for $389 and includes UNLIMITED at A-B with 5 days at other VR resorts (1 at Vail or BC and the rest at KS and Breck)

post #8 of 11

I know you are psyched to ski CO sooner rather than later, but if things don't work out for the earlier trip, the overall conditions could be better in late March at the I70 resorts you are considering and there will likely be some good emerging late season discounts by then.

post #9 of 11


  Those I70 resorts Copper, loveland and a-basin are all great. There are web sites where you can get 2-day passes for copper for about $45-50 per day but it might be Monday & Tuesday. I think you can get into Loveland for about that also. Loveland and Copper are both a great place for Intermediate skiing. Last year we purchased gas at a shell station in denver and got 2 for 1 passes to copper. Also had 2 for 1's to a-basin from some where on-line maybe ebay or liftopia?.. We did the same thing 4 days on I-70 and paid about $180.00 per person for all four day's lift tickets..

Have Fun...

post #10 of 11

Are you looking to stay relatively close to Denver/I70? If not, you have some options down south. I am particularly fond of Telluride, Wolf Creek and Crested Butte. Lift tickets are less expensive than most of the big VA and Intrawest resorts up north, even without discounts. And, in the case of WC and CB anyway, lodging is likely to be more reasonable. 

post #11 of 11
Thread Starter 


Thanks for all the input, everyone!



I found those deals through this article:, which led me to this ski shop's discounted tickets site: Copper also offers $70 lift tickets with hotel. I think I also saw some cheaper tickets on liftopia, but I think those were for different dates.

Unfortunately I don't think my friends know anyone who works at Copper. That would be an awesome deal. I also wish we could afford and had time for two trips in a year, but I don't think that is going to happen this year.



I am starting to more seriously consider going in March. We really wanted to go in December and January, but  everything is so much more expensive over New Years. It's too bad we can't even push the trip back a few days.



I can't find anything as cheap as that for Copper tickets. I also looked into the Shell 2 for 1 deal, but sadly they are not offering that anymore for 2011, and I couldn't find anything for 2012.

I can't find anything very cheap on liftopia for Copper until the first week of January, but haven't checked ebay or craigslist yet.

It'd be great if I could find something under $200 per person for all four days.



We are not necessarily looking to stay close to Denver/I70, but those are the closest places to us since we are driving from Missouri. I will look into those when I have a chance. If we could find better deals, it might be worth a longer drive or maybe even looking into flying.

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