Alli Widman                 February 2020

Champagne powder and glades are a perfect combination and a signature feature here. Steamboat, also known as "Ski Town USA" is located in the Northwestern corner of Colorado slightly off the beaten path (I-70 corridor) but well worth the trip. One of the larger Colorado resorts, Steamboat spans six peaks, has169 named trails and plenty of accessible backcountry terrain. Incredible fall lines enable skiing or riding almost anywhere, so long as you are willing to navigate the trees (which cover about two-thirds of the area). Though large, it is easy to loop between peaks by way of the backside (Morningside Park). The names of the peaks and trail are cleverly thematic providing an indication of trail difficulty and a clue into the best time of day to ski relative to the sun. Steamboat is more accessible than ever, new to the Ikon Pass for the 2018-19 season and with direct service from 15 major cities to Hayden airport, only 30 minutes away. Steamboat has an outstanding ski school program, a dedicated Kids Vacation Center for the younger ones, a range of accommodations easily accessible to the mountain and the feel of an authentic Western town. The area also has natural hot springs, perfect for keeping your legs spry and ready for more powder.



Avant Ski

Full - unlimited
Base - 5 days

Quick Take

  • Champagne powder and the best tree skiing in Colorado - what else do you need?

  • More reasonably priced accommodations than other mountains of comparable size (Vail and Aspen)

  • Family friendly with a dedicated Kids Vacation Center (KVC) for children 6 months - 6 years

  • Lower elevation (base at 6,900 ft) can be easier to acclimatize

  • Natural hot springs in the area are a nice respite for the legs after working through the powder

  • When visibility is low, try to stay in the trees, there are plenty of gladed areas and visibility can be much better

  • Steamboat has a unique climate. Sunny days often have inversions. Don't be deterred by very cold temperatures at the base, on bluebird days warmer air rises as cold air sinks and temperatures at Thunderhead, mid-mountain are higher than at the base

  • There is significant lodging at the base, though amenities in the pedestrian village is limited and you will likely want to venture into the town of Steamboat Springs (~10 minutes away by car)

  • The Full Ikon Pass serves as a season pass for Steamboat with access to 35 additional resorts

  • If you are looking for long, super steep terrain, it is more limited, the steepest areas are short

  • If you don't like tree skiing, think twice, Steamboat is below the treeline and nearly two-thirds of the mountain is gladed

  • Harder to reach, direct flights are pricier and limited to 15 cities to / from Hayden; driving from Denver is ~4 hours and can be limited by weather

  • Lower elevation requires constant snow fall to keep terrain in good shape and season can be shorter than other Colorado resorts


Getting To
  • Closest Major City: Denver, CO

  • Distance: ~180 miles South East 

  • Travel Time: ~ 3.5 - 5 hours (varies based on traffic and road /weather conditions) 

  • 30 miles from Hayden, CO

    • ~30 minute drive​

  • 3.5 miles from Steamboat Springs, CO

    • 10 minute drive​

Neighboring Resorts
  • Steamboat stands alone in Northwest, CO; the closes resorts on the I-70 corridor are ~2 hours away. For a longer trip, consider combining a visit to Steamboat with Winter Park, Copper or Vail

  • Closet Neighbors on the Ikon Pass​ 

    • ​Winter Park (98 miles, ~2 hrs)

    • Copper (99 miles, ~2 hrs)

  • Other Colorado Resorts within 2 Hours

    • Beaver Creek (83 miles, ~1 hr 45 mins)

    • Vail (90 miles, ~1 hr 50 mins)​ 

    • Arapahoe Basin (100 miles, ~2 hrs 5 mins)

    • Breckenridge (101 miles, 2 hrs 10 mins)

Travel by Plane
Travel by Bus
  • The City of Steamboat Springs runs Steamboat Springs Transit (SST), a system of free buses between the ski area, downtown, most hotels and condos, grocery and entertainment locations

    • Buses run every 20 minutes from 7AM - 1:45AM​

  • Airport shuttle services is available to / from DEN and HDN

            - $95 / adult each way to /                from DEN

            - $62 / adult round trip to /                from HDN

  • ​We prefer to have a car here, Steamboat Springs is 3 miles (~10 mins drive) from the mountain base

    • Pros: Convenience, rental car area easily accessed from HDN airport; amenities at base are limited

    • Cons: Premium parking costs $15/day; free lots at base are a little further away​

  • ​Ride shares (Uber and Lyft) operate in Steamboat but service is limited​ so we would not rely on them for getting around​

Travel by Car
  • Closest major commercial airport: DEN - (Denver International Airport)  

      - ~180 miles South East, ~4 hrs

  • Closest regional airport: HDN

      (Yampa Valley Regional Airport)

      - ~24 miles West, ~30 minutes

      - Direct service to 15 major U.S.

  • Private planes can also come into / out of Yampa Valley 

Though not essential, we prefer to have a car here. The town is 3 miles from the mountain base. Mountain base offers close parking for $15/day or free parking slightly further away. Having a car is convenient for going to/from downtown, grocery shopping and visiting the hot springs.  

The Lay of the LAnd

Coming soon - easy navigation with all of the key spots highlighted 

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