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NM Family Ski - Angel Fire or Red River ?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

(Driving From Dallas)


Had some discussions about Utah on another thread now the wife thinks we should drive for our ski trip versus fly DFW-SLC area.


With that said, between Angel Fire, NM and Red River, NM, both which were recommended as "family friendly" and "beginner friendly", which of the TWO is the better place ?   Kids will likely gravitate towards snowboarding if that matters.


Thanks for the great resource this forum is.

post #2 of 7
I've been to Red River, but not Angel Fire. Hopefully a NM expert will weigh in. I've heard Angel Fire has some good intermediate terrain. One thing Red River has that might be of interest to you is a batch of green circle runs on the upper, backside of the mtn. They are quite easy and scenic. No doubt, the town of Red River is super close to the slopes making that a convenient choice for a lot of Texans making the drive west. Having said that, you might want to also price out the cost of going to Taos. It's a very impressive ski area in many ways. While Taos is known for advanced/expert terrain that takes a back seat to no one, it has some very nice green circle and blue square terrain that could be enjoyed by ambitious low-intermediates.
post #3 of 7

Angel Fire town is also slope-side.


I have heard that Red River has good instruction. The town is pretty with a cool, old west feel to it, without being resort-ey like Crested Butte or Telluride. I have only been there in summer, so can't speak to the quality or character of the slopes.


Angel Fire has good Terrain Parks, in case your snowboarders are interested in that. Yes, it has a lot of green/blue terrain. The town was developed as a resort and so it is in a lovely setting but not particularly charming.


(caveat: Angel Fire is the only ski area where I've turned in my ticket and left after just a few hours. I found it amazingly crowded for a small, out of the way, resort. There wasn't a lot of natural snow and the artificial snow, less than great grooming and crowds rendered the slopes icy and unpleasant.)


You may not want to hear other options, but Ski Santa Fe or Taos are better choices IMO. (and Santa Fe is actually a shorter drive from Dallas.)

post #4 of 7

Can follow the links I put under Topics Discussed (right hand column) to the EpicSki Resort Pages.  Scroll down to the bottom of the webpage for relevant threads.  Seems like a family of beginners had a good time at Angel Fire a couple seasons ago, but I don't remember for sure.  I know at least one of the boys in that family was snowboarding.  The parents were skiing.

post #5 of 7

I'm not an expert on NM ski areas, but I have been to all the above-mentioned areas.  Angel Fire is nice, and bigger than Red River, but the lower half of the mountain is flat and one of the main routes to the base area (where the main hi-speed chair is) actually has an uphill section which requires maximum speed to get over the crest.  It's difficult enough as a skier, especially if that strong NM sunshine softens things up, like it did both times I was there.  I'd bet the boarders would get frustrated if you all tried to stick together.  Red River is small, but inexpensive, and worth a visit.  I agree with Mom about Santa Fe being a better choice, plus it's a great town.  I was there in January last season during a droughty period, and it had significantly better snow than AF and Taos, probably due to an investment in snowmaking and what they claimed is the highest base elevation after A-Basin. (Can't vouch for that). Taos is far and away the best area in NM, especially when it snows, but is not what I would call a "family" ski area, and decidedly is not a beginner mountain. 

post #6 of 7
It would help if we knew what qualities would make a resort better or worse for the OP.
post #7 of 7

New Mexico skiing is all about the snow.

Go where you can find the best snow unless it is an exceptional year.

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