Aspen and Snowmass are considered to be the pinnacle in skiing and snowboarding destinations. Nestled high in the Rocky Mountains, these two towns have easy access to several different resorts and trails that make for amazing skiing and snowboarding. In order to help you find the best skiing and snowboarding experiences, here are our picks for the top five ski runs in Snowmass, Colorado.
Bull Run – Snowmass Mountain
Snowmass Mountain has over 150 miles of trails that span 4,400 feet of vertical terrain. You can spend your entire trip on this mountain alone and not repeat the same ground twice. This mountain has some of the best beginner trails in all of Colorado and is a great place to start your journey. Our favorite run on Snowmass Mountain is Bull Run. Isolated from the rest of the mountain, this run, which is just left of the Elk Camp Lift, offers iconic views of Maroon Bells from the top, fun intermediate terrain, and small stands of trees that give it an adventurous feel. It’s a great place to head at the end of the day to enjoy some moderate terrain and a long, last run back down to your après ski destination. Bull Run is also rated at a Blue difficulty, so it’s perfect for those looking at a moderate Snowmass skiing challenge while still maintaining a fun time.
Big Burn Chair Lift
Big Burn Chair Lift provides access to two different and amazing ski runs, Powerline Trees and Sneaky’s Glades. Powerline Trees has low-angle pine glades that are the perfect powder warm-up to wake the legs and feel some fresh snow in your face. Skiers will want to follow Mick’s Gully run until they come across the power lines running along an opening in the trees. From here, skiers can schuss through the trees all the way back down to the Big Burn chair. Featuring ungroomed terrain and some ego bumps, Powerline is great for the intermediate skier looking to challenge themselves without getting in too far over their head. When some want to ski trees and some want to ski wide-open runs, Sneaky’s Glades, off the Big Burn chairlift, is the perfect trail for you and your group. Sneaky’s Glades contains well-spaced glades, gradual pitches, and tight, roller-coaster-like terrain. Sneaky’s Glades is situated next to the blue groomer, Sneaky’s run, where you can meet up with the rest of your group or bail out early if the dogs are barking. Insider tip: For one of the most spectacular views of Mt. Daly on Snowmass, ski along Sneaky’s Glades rope line.
Snowmass Skiing at the Hanging Valley Glades
Hanging Valley offers access to two more amazing trails for Aspen Snowmass skiing. Offering the steepest trees on the mountain, Hanging Valley Glades require a short traverse from the top of the High Alpine chairlift. The quickest way to access the Glades is by skiing about three-fourths down The Edge, one of the last runs next to the High Alpine lift and popping into the steep trees on the right. Since they’re the highest glades on Snowmass, the Hanging Valley Glades are apt to get more snow than any other trees.
Hanging Valley Wall
The Hanging Valley Wall is the second trail and requires two lift rides and a short 5-minute hike to the top of Roberto’s chute, but the steep and deep tree skiing make it well worth the trip. Once you make it down Roberto’s, go straight into Frog Pond Glades and keep straight through the trees to find the final pitch named Willy’s. Frog Pong Glades are huge, and it is easy to ski a different line every time you ski through. Plus, the fact that it isn’t the easiest to get to ensures that the snow won’t get tracked up right away. Offering more steep pitches and powder, Willy’s is the perfect icing on the cake to one truly excellent tree run.
This amazing trail is accessed through the High Alpine lift. Both thrill-seekers and those looking to enjoy some widely spaced expert trees have Aspen Snowmass skiing options on Dikes. Best skied after a big snowfall, the Dikes is a bit of a hike from the top of High Alpine, but certainly worth the extra effort. Those who are inclined to steep skiing, cliffs, and cornices can hike up from High Alpine to experience the above tree line amphitheater, the Cirque. Skiers and snowboarders looking for a more forgiving pitch can ski a ways down Green Cabin (a blue run) and cut left to get the snowy, soft goods in Dikes trees. The Dikes gate is a little further down on the left. As skiers descend, the glades become bumpy and narrow as the terrain funnels into a rocky gully, which marks the area’s exit. For those less willing to brave the technical exit, it’s possible to stay high on the skier’s right and ski through the trees back to Green Cabin.