Winter Park - Ski Resort and Snow Summary
Winter Park - Ski Resort in American Rockies (2740m to 3680m)
A world-class but unpretentious resort offering excellent skiing for all abilities. Excels in kid's programs and disabled skiing as well as all other more usual skiers needs. It may be reached from Denver by a unique (in Western US) ski train. In 1997 - '98 Winter Park introduced the Vasquez Cirque terrain of 435 off-piste acres with a mix of steeps, glades and natural terrain variations. In '99-'00 the Zephyr Mountain Lodge was completed offering the first ski-in, ski-out condominium lodging at the resort. The first phase of the village at Winter Park, the ZML has 230 condo units, a retail and rental shop, restaurant, mercantile, liquor store, and coffee/martini bar.
Key Facts for Winter Park
|220km||Cross Country Pistes|
The American ski resort of Winter Park has direct access to 134 individual pistes, served by 22 ski lifts.
The ski resort itself is above 1500m, so skiing or boarding back to the resort is usually possible. With pistes above 2500 metres, skiing and snowboarding is assured throughout the season.
Snowmaking :- Winter Park is able to augment natural snow, with 45 Snow Cannons.
Ski Lift Capacity :- The 22 Ski Lifts of Winter Park are able to uplift 35,030 skiers / snowboarders per hour.
There is an airport within two hours drive, so ski weekends, snowboard breaks and short ski holidays to Winter Park are perfectly feasible.
Skiing in Winter Park
Winter Park's terrain offers skiing and 'boarding for all ability levels, radiating out from the base. Beginners are especially well catered for with Groswold's Discovery Park over to the right as you reach the base of the slopes. It's a huge fenced in area of gently sloping but interesting terrain especially for them. Intermediates have the most to enjoy of all - with long fast cruises like Cranmer and Mary Jane Trail, always perfectly groomed. It's also one of the few resorts to offer bowl skiing especially tailored for intermediates, rather than experts, in Parsenn Bowl.
Although Winter Park already had a good reputation for expert level skiing on its notorious Mary Jane mountain, it has recently added much more. In the late 1990s the resort introduced the Vasquez Cirque terrain of 435 off-piste acres with a mix of steeps, glades and natural terrain variations. This area was extended with a further 252 acres of steep and deep terrain - the total now is 687 acres. The newest section includes trails with names like Alphabet Chutes, Shadow Chute and Belle Fourche stretching northwards from the entry to the Cirque. To reach this pristine terrain skiers and 'boarders have a 30 minute hike.
The Winter Park Ski and Snowboard School has a vast array of tuition options on offer - many of them very innovative. The First Tracks private lesson starts at 8am and gives you access to the freshly groomed slopes before the lifts open. Or for $200 plus lab fees you get a three hour private session in 'The Performance Lab' where a 'biomechancial assessment' of your ability and equipment needs is carried out on and off the snow. Additional lab fees may be required to cover the cost of canting and foot beds if they're required.
Cross country skiers have 200km (125 miles) of trails in the vicinity - primarily at the nearby Devil's Thumb Cross Country Center and the YMCA's Snow Mountain Ranch.
Snowboarding in Winter Park
Although the resort has a reputation for wide open cruisers and deep powder stashes on Mary Jane mountain, Winter Park Resort continues push the envelope through its progressive design of its five terrain parks. Rail Yard, the largest of the five, features Dark Territory, home to the biggest and best features of all five terrain parks. This controlled access park requires a special pass, onetime viewing of a tutorial video and an additional fee. Dog Patch, Dog Patch East, Kendrick and the Starter Park are the area's beginner to intermediate size terrain park's and are excellent for those looking to develop and perfect their freeriding skills.
Winter Park's super pipe, measures 450 feet in length, with walls up to 18 feet high - large enough to hold nationally ranked freestyle competitions. The resort's snowmakers and groomers work together to create jumps, ramps, winding gullies and treetops for big air thrill seekers in the Rail Yard Terrain Park.
Tuition is offered with courses tailored for all ability levels from beginner to pro by the Ski and Ride School. There is also a Snowboard Series of contests staged at Winter Park allowing amateurs the chance to compete in halfpipe and rail jam competitions.
Winter Park Aprés Ski
Of the 40plus bars and restaurants around Winter Park, the majority are concentrated along the high street through the centre of the town. However the dramatically remodelled Club Car, located at Mary Jane base, is a popular first stop for the crowds coming off the slopes to exchange tales of the day's excitement, it has been completely overhauled recently.
Away from the slopes, Smokin' Moe's plays host to regular live blues entertainment and features some great headliners like Tab Benoit is what keeps the crowd jumping. Deno's Mountain Bistro rocks from cocktail hour to the wee small hours with its sports bar ambiance. The Pub is a long-time favorite for late night crowds and Buckets does double duty nightlife with a lively laundry, bar, video games, and lots of activity. The Grand County Blues Society brings big-name blues artists to local venues; check the local newspaper for dates and time of these and other live music shows.
Winter Park Snow Reports by e-mail
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Winter Park in brief
Winter Park Ski Resort is:
Very good for Expert Skiers.
Excellent for Intermediate Skiers.
Very good for Beginners.
Very good for Snowboarding.
Winter Park Season Dates
Opened : November 13, 2013.
Closes : April 20, 2014.
Usual opening - Mid Nov.
Usual closing - Late April.
NOTE:- Opening subject to Snow Conditions in Winter Park.