Pros:a clutz like me could learn to ski at Snowmass, not crowded, nice people
Cons:I didn't pay for our trip-but I understand it is expensive to ski there
The Bottom Line: Snowmass if the perfect ski resort for beginners and families. There are numerous different hills for all levels of skiers.
When I first started dating my boyfriend, Mark, I soon found out that I would too have to become a snowbunny like the rest of his family. I feared our trip to Snowmass because I had never downhill skied in my life. I also have had surgery on my knee twice and was scared I would hurt myself skiing. Luckily, I can say I came out of the trip in one piece (after wearing my huge brace on the slopes). Snowmass was the perfect and most beautiful place to remember learning to ski for the first time. I will never forget my experience there!
My boyfriend's grandparents were kind enough to take us all on the skiing trip, so why not learn to ski in Colorado? This is why I am not sure how much our lift pass cost or the condos we stayed in all week. I was reassured by my boyfriend's family that it was better to learn on big ski hills opposed to the smaller ones that Wisconsin has to offer.
We flew into Denver and took a rental car to Snowmass, where we were staying in condominiums rented for the week. Our condos were right on the bunny hill and we had easy access to the ski lifts. I began my skiing lesson by getting on the bunny hill and quickly progressed. I feared going up "Funnel Hill" for the first time to go on a "real hill." However, the ski lift was fun and the staff there was really understanding that it was my first time skiing. I fell off the lift at the end a couple of times, but after that I got the hang of it.
We went in late February, early March of 2000 and it was not very crowded. In fact, I felt much safer without too many pro skiers wooshing by my pathetic beginner form! I avoided the big hills right away and went on the easier paths, which were perfect for a beginner. I did get up to the harder slopes, like Elk Camp and tended to enjoy the easier paths. I guess I am just not that adventurous and feared something happening to my knee.
I saw many small children learning who looked better than me! So, Snowmass is also perfect for families. These children were of course getting instructions from one of the many teachers you can sight on the hill (wearing their red coats). Such teachers also give instructions on snowboarding, moguls, and to adults who need to improve their form.
I did get more adventurous as the week went on and went on every hill on Snowmass. I didn't quite make it down Sam's Knob (I think that's the name) as it was too advanced for me. My boyfriend helped me down the huge hill and I never want to go past my level of skiing again. That was true fear, but at least I came out safe. If you do get stuck on a hard hill, there is usually a different path to get you back down to the bottom. The whole resort is really easy to find your way around as there are signs everywhere. I even went by myself for a while and didn't get lost.
The "Snowmass Village" area is beautiful and lined with cute shops. There are unique gifts to pick up for your loved ones and great ski apparel offered. Many people stop and eat in this area, as there are food vendors located right on the hill.
We also took a day trip to Aspen to shop. We caught a free bus provided by Snowmass Village. I loved it there, but things were a little pricey to me. I also felt that (like in most stores) the salespeople committed "agism" and judged my boyfriend, his brother, and I by our looks. Sure we look younger than we really are, but come on. That is a pet peeve and the people in Aspen shops really got on my nerves because of that. We ate at the Hard Rock Cafe in town and enjoyed that. It's great for groups and there are many other restaurants located in the same area. We did not ski in Aspen, but my boyfriend's family has in the past and they enjoyed it. It was too crowded for them and a little more dangerous than the slopes of Snowmass.
So, if a clutz like me could survive skiing in Snowmass for the first time, so could you. In fact, we are all going again for spring break of 2002 and I can't wait to improve my skiing. This time we are staying in a house rented for the week, since our group got a little bigger this year. I look forward to it again and will report back to you on how it went!
Read all 65 Reviews
Write a Review
Level of Experience Needed: All
Best Time to Visit: March
Best Suited For: Families