Are you a rookie or a novice on the slopes? No problem. You can find fun in the snow. Here are your best options in Colorado:

BUTTERMILK SKI AREA

You’ve likely seen Buttermilk Mountain featured on the Winter X Games, but you don’t have to be Shaun White to appreciate the small ski area in Aspen. In fact, it’s known for gentle, rolling terrain that’s great for beginners. The more advanced runs still will be there when you’re ready to tackle them.
Skiable acres: 470
Trails: 44
Easy: 35%
Intermediate: 39%
Advanced: 21%
Expert: 5%

ELDORA MOUNTAIN RESORT

Located 21 miles west of Boulder, this small ski area is a favorite among University of Colorado students, who know enough to exploit a rich secret: Once or twice each winter, an upslope storm seems to dump amazing amounts of powder, making for memorable days on the slopes.
Skiable acres: 680
Trails: 53
Easy: 20%
Intermediate: 50%
Advanced: 15%
Expert: 15%

SKI COOPER

Ski the slopes where the 10th Mountain Division troopers trained to fight the Nazis in World War II. Today it’s a family-friendly ski area outside Leadville where most runs lead down to the lodge, meaning children will have to work hard to get lost. Fans of this historic spot celebrate it as a throwback to the sport’s low-key roots.
Skiable acres: 400
Trails: 26
Easy: 30%
Intermediate: 40%
Advanced/Expert: 30%

SKI GRANBY RANCH

Formerly known as SolVista Basin, this family-owned ski area near Granby is groomed and wide-open, perfect for beginners. Come to Ski Granby if you’re tired of hunting for parking or waiting in line at chair lifts. For those visiting Rocky Mountain National Park from the west, it’s a great option for a day on the slopes.
Skiable acres: 406
Trails: 41
Easy: 30%
Intermediate: 50%
Advanced/Expert: 20%

SUNLIGHT MOUNTAIN RESORT

You won’t find crowds at this resort near Glenwood Springs, but what it lacks in size it makes up for in cost – about half of what you’ll pay up the road in Aspen. Accommodations and rental gear here are modest, and a family-friendly vibe pervades. After skiing, grab a meal in downtown Glenwood Springs and then load up the whole crew for a soak in the city’s lauded historic hot springs resort.
Skiable acres: 470
Trails: 67
Easy: 20%
Intermediate: 55%
Advanced: 20%
Expert: 5%

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