In a recent press release, SKI Magazine announced that it had awarded it’s “highest honors” to two American resorts – one in the east and one in the west.

While Smugglers’ Notch in Vermont took the crown for best resort in the east, Colorado’s own Aspen Snowmass snagged the top spot for best resort in the west. Here are a few of their reasons for why:

– variety of terrain (the release mentions all four mountains local in regards to this factor)

– family-friendly offerings

– “unmatched” dining, lodging, and aprés options

– the town’s personality

First, huge congrats to Aspen. This is a great accomplishment. There’s a ton of competition in Colorado alone, not to mention all of the states along the West Coast plus Utah.

That being said, Aspen Snowmass probably wouldn’t have been my first pick, mainly because it seems as if they made the judgment by looking at terrain of all four mountains in the area (Snowmass, Buttermilk, Highlands, and Ajax), instead of focusing on a single mountain – Aspen Snowmass. Undoubtedly, this gives Aspen Snowmass a hand up on the competition. Don’t get me wrong, Aspen Snowmass is amazing and a true top-notch resort. Other resorts just have a better variety of terrain that doesn’t require a bus ride.

It’s a bit of a stretch, but it would be like saying Breckenridge, Keystone, and Arapahoe Basin are all one resort, simply because they’re on the same pass and geographically close – last time I checked, you could even take a bus between the three, like in Aspen.

If I had to pick my top resort in Colorado, it’d be hard to skip over Telluride. From top to bottom to the town itself, skiing at Telluride is unmatched in Colorado and perhaps the entire American West. I’ll also always have a soft-spot for Breckenridge. Despite the weekend crowds and the often wind-scraped terrain, an uncrowded bluebird weekday here can be near-perfect (it’s proximity to the Front Range helps, I’ll admit I’m biased living in Colorado Springs).

Do you think Aspen Snowmass is the best resort in Colorado? If so, why? If not, what is?


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