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Family Ski Resort Choices, in Six Regions


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Beaver Creek Ski Resort, Strawberry Park. Photo © Jack Affleck, Beaver Creek Resort.

Beaver Creek Colorado Ski Resort, Strawberry Park. Photo © Jack Affleck, Beaver Creek Resort.

Ah, the Rockies. Half a dozen states have Rocky Mountain ranges (-such as Utah, next page) but Colorado is the marquis state, thanks to celebrity spots such as Aspen and Vail. Colorado has other great ski resorts too, some of which come with quaint mining towns.

It comes as no surprise that the mountain stats are big: a ski resort base might start at 9000' elevation, and have 3000+ acres of terrain. Vertical drops of 3000+ feet are common.

Tip: if timing or money is tight, think twice about places that need connector flights to small airports. Flights can get canceled if the weather's bad, and airfares tend to cost more too. Read more about Family Skiing: Airport to Slope Time.

Aspen / Snowmass
This mega ski resort, 162 miles from Denver, has four mountain areas. Aspen has been synonymous with status and wealth for decades: think Victorian buildings, top shops and eats, and private jets delivering guests. Snowmass has a whopping 4400 vertical feet, a giant children's center, and teen programs. Aspen-Snowmass gets good Airport-To-Slope Time thanks to a local airport.*

Beaver Creek, CO
This upscale Colorado ski resort is known for kids programs: kids even have their own gondola and restaurant. Beaver Creek is just a few miles from Vail: lift passes are good at all mountains owned by Vail Resorts. Guests can fly into nearby Eagle County Airport.

104 miles west of Denver airport, Breckenridge ski resort has many family-friendly features and a quaint Victorian town.

Crested Butte
Known for x-treme skiing, Crested Butte also has lots of easier acreage. Location is 230 miles southwest of Denver. Visitors can enjoy great snow and a cute former mining town with shops and restaurants.

Keystone Ski Resort, CO
90 miles from Denver airport, Keystone is one of several Colorado ski resorts owned by Vail Resorts, and lift passes are good at all. Keystone's annual Kidtopia features a Snow Fort and fun activities.

Steamboat Ski Resort
157 miles northwest of Denver, Steamboat has kids programs, kids-only terrain and lifts, and often offers Kids Free deals.

Vail, CO
This giant ski resort -- with over 5000 acres of terrain-- has nightlife, kids' programs, a tube park with covered lift, and legendary "back bowls". Vail is near Beaver Creek and lift passes are good at several ski resorts owned by Vail Resorts. Guests can fly into nearby Eagle airport.

Winter Park
Just 67 miles NW of Denver, this family-friendly ski resort has 3000+ skiable acres and five mountain areas, and is a leader in accessible skiing.

Many More Colorado Ski Resorts
Kidznsnow.com overviews Colorado Ski Resorts including less-known places that locals love. For the big picture, see this birds-eye view of Colorado ski resorts.

Family skiers should keep in mind that with base elevations from 7500 and up, altitude may cause temporary symptoms such as headaches.

--Continue to Utah

*Always check for updates!

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