Pardon me while I do a little bit of catching up!
Ahh yes Copper Mountain! For me this is back to the place where my love for skiing all started! It has been a few years since I’d been back here and it was a perfect day to be back at Copper Mountain while of course playing hooky from the office in the middle of the week.
I had downloaded Copper’s Sherpa app the night before with hopes of giving it a try, but that didnt happen as I had wanted, so I will have to try it another time. Nothing to do with the app itself, more to do with my equipmentI was able to try out another app I have been wanting to use, called Snowciety. It’s of course a social app. Snowciety tracks your runs and give you important data, such as top speed, average speed, vertical elevation and distance. You can post comments and share your stats with your Snowciety friends or even share on facebook and other social media platforms. You can even see where your friends are on the mountain. I’ll try to post a screenshot or two later of it if I can.
The pics taken here I took with my phone, so they arent the greatest captures but for the purpose of sharing them with you guys here on the blog they do the job. It was one of those bluebird days at Copper this day as you can see in the pictures. Great weather, short lift lines and not having to work each made for an awesome day on the slopes. Unfortunate for me it was the only time this past season that I was able to get some skiing in. Hopefully that will change for the better in the season ahead.
Here are a few photos from this past Sunday, skiing down at Monarch. Monarch is definitely one of my favorite places to ski. Of course there are a lot of places I have yet to go, but all in due time. Coming from Denver the drive is just under 3 hours an easy drive with lesser traffic than sitting on I-70 and it’s even that same way on the mountain. The lift lines move fast at Monarch, with plenty of trails and a vertical drop of 1162 feet.
Monarch has 800 skiable acres and sits in the Sawatch Range along the Continental Divide of the San Isabel National Forest.
Monarch also has 1000 acres of cat skiing available for experts who want a greater challenge. Click here for info, videos and photos on cat skiing from the Monarch website.
This past Saturday I made the short drive up to Wyoming and Snowy Range Ski Resort outside of Laramie. It was my first ski trip of the season so far. I hope to make some other trips to other resorts this season while there is still time, but we will see. The weather was great on Saturday and so were conditions. Not a ton different to write about on this trip up that I havent already told you when I was up here last year, so here are a few photos from Saturday.
There will be big news coming soon that I am very excited about! Stay tuned!
I’m back outdoors!
Destination, Snowy Range Ski Area an easy drive about two and a half hours northwest towards the Medicine Bow National Forest to make some tracks. Coming from Denver, head north to Cheyenne(I-25), then west towards Laramie(I-80), then follow WY 130 towards Centennial. Snowy Range sits 32 miles west of Laramie, 5 miles west of Centennial.
If you love to ski or board and want to try something a little different then give Snowy Range a try. Snowy Range is small, just 27 trails but that shouldn’t stop you from coming here. This is my second time skiing here and though it’s been a few years since my last visit, if it weren’t worth it I wouldn’t have come back.
Here’s what I like most about Snowy Range. You are guaranteed to get in more than your fair share of runs for the day. Couple that with an inexpensive $43 full day lift ticket (adult) and you get more than your money’s worth. The lift lines are short and most of the trails are long, longest trail being 1.8 miles. Elevation from base to summit is 1000 feet.
The day lodge at Snowy Range has a gift shop, a bar and a huge cafeteria with plenty of food options. Rentals and lessons are available as well as snowshoe tours. There are lodging packages available in nearby Centennial as well as in Laramie. All and all skiing to me is about the experience and having a great time and I not only had fun, but I witnessed lots of other people young and old doing the same.
While skiing at Monarch a couple of weeks ago, we heard mention of Red River by a snowboarder on the quad chair lift. Wondering and not thinking to ask, we had to look it up for ourselves. Red River Ski Area is just over 4 hours from Denver in Red River, New Mexico. Immediate thought was “Roadtrip!” of course. A nice easy drive to explore new territory in a small mountain town and carve out some turns in. Red River is small, though not the smallest town I’ve been in. Population numbers as of 2010 were 477. Red River doesn’t seem like a town of fewer than 500 when you’re there. There are plenty of places to stay, grab a bite to eat, hear live music and shop.
Red River Ski Area of the Carson National Forest in the Sangre de Cristo mountain range has 57 trails and a base elevation of 8750′ and it’s top elevation is 10350′. The front of the mountain consists of mostly blue and black runs and a few green runs. The backside of the mountain is where most of the green runs are and 3 blues. The backside trails are through lots of Aspens which make for a scenic time. There is the Ski Tip Restaurant and Bar at the top of the mountain where you can grab a bite to eat if you choose. One thing that makes Red River a unique place to ski is that the chair lifts on the front side of the mountain are right there in town literally. You can purchase your lift ticket right there at the lift at a ticket vending machine with a credit card. There is a lodge that contains a day care, cafeteria, retail shop and ski school. There are 3 terrain park areas on the mountain.
I really enjoyed my time at Red River. Don’t let the size fool you, the layout of its 57 trails is great and gives you a great a variety. Scenics trails, lift lines were small and fast, the staff is friendly and there are some amazing views. Here are a few photos from Saturday at Red River.
It’s been at least a couple of seasons since I last hit the slopes. So I was excited when earlier in the week I got an invite to do some skiing on Saturday down at Monarch Mountain. Monarch is just about 3 hours southwest of Denver and well worth the drive down even if only for a day trip. First of all there’s hardly the traffic headache like there is most weekends driving West on I-70 towards Copper Mountain, Winter Park, Arapahoe Basin, etc. And if I’m going to spend 3 hours in traffic, I’d rather be moving towards my destination than being stuck not going anywhere on the interstate on the weekends. Not to mention you can actually get a lot of skiing in at Monarch, the lift lines are never tirelessly long and move pretty quickly, which equates to lots of runs! Here are a few photos from Saturday, enjoy!
If you’re wondering, I ski mostly blues and greens. I’ve done a black diamond or two in my time and some of them not by choice. But hey you gotta get down the mountain at some point, so why not learn the hard way. Double black diamonds are not on the “to do” list just yet, if ever!
But today was about having fun first and foremost, while also regaining and improving my form. There wasnt a ton of snow at Monarch on Saturday, not like I’ve seen in the past up here, but still a decent mid-mountain base measurement of about 29 inches is plenty. It’s been a dry winter so far this season here in Colorado in terms of snowfall totals, but hopefully there will be a rebound for more snow soon.
I do own my own equipment. I have a pair of Rossignol skis and poles and my boots are by Lange. I’ve rented equipment maybe my first 4 or 5 times early on, then decided it was time to purchase my own. It’s one of the best investments I’ve ever made, and I’ve only been skiing since 2004.
There are no hotels or rooms at Monarch, but there is a hotel just up the road from the entrance or your best bet is to if you are staying in the area is to get a room in nearby Salida, CO which is 20 minutes east of Monarch. Get outside and have a good time no matter what you choose to do!
A huge thank you to Deb and Charles for the invite and letting me tag along! Great time as always!