Arapahoe Basin Facilities and Activities
Written by Karl Sander
• Last updated Sep 18, 2017
A-Basin runs their own rental shop located in the base area. It opens at 8am, but has half-day rentals available starting at noon so you could use your own gear in the morning, and sample something different (maybe a fatter powder ski if it’s coming down!) in the afternoon. The Demo Ski Package is the most expensive option, but is still only $59 for a full day ($55 for a half-day), which is a good deal for the current season’s latest gear from manufacturers like Dynastar, Nordica, and K2. A good middle ground is the Performance Ski Package with Rossignol all-mountain skis for $49 for a full day, $45 for a half-day. The Sport Ski Package and Snowboard Package are both $39 full day and $35 half day. Helmets are included in all the rental packages, but you can also rent one by itself for $10. Children’s ski and snowboard rentals are $22 for a full day and $18 for a half day. Of course, if you’re staying at another resort you can also look into rentals there. Even though A-Basin’s rates are quite competitive, shops in Dillon, Silverthorne and Frisco also tend to be budget-friendly and may be worth looking into if that’s where you’re staying.
A-Basin’s ski and snowboard school may not be as large as that of its neighbors, but it’s every bit as good. Many of the instructors have been there for decades, and in addition to being able to teach, they know the mountain inside and out!
There are several packages available. For kids ages 3-14, ski and snowboard lessons are limited to four students grouped by ability level so the instructors are able to give everyone plenty of attention. A full day lesson goes for $160 while a half day lesson costs $135. The price of a lesson also includes the ticket! If you have kids age 6-12, and sign up before December 18th, you can get one two-day pass per child for free and 50% off a morning half day lesson for first-timers!
Adult ski and snowboard classes for all ability levels are available for ages 15 and up. They’re half day lessons (the afternoon session is meant for beginners) for $105, and include a full day ticket. On Saturdays and Sundays, you can “free your heel and free your mind” with telemark lessons for beginners through experts. These lessons are also half day for $105. There are also women’s sessions available starting at $75 for a one-time, day-of ‘drop-in.’
You can get private lessons which are available for whatever block of time suits your needs, from one hour to all-day! They can accommodate groups of four so you can gather some of your friends or family to pick up new skills and get quick lift access, and the lessons can accommodate different disciplines (ski, snowboard, telemark) in the same group. During the regular season, full day private lessons go for $499, half day runs $425, and a two-hour afternoon class costs $199. In the late season (generally after May 1st), the rates are lower. Unlike the other lesson packages, your lift ticket isn’t included.
There is a kid’s center at A-Basin, but it supports children’s lessons – it’s meant as a place to drop them off and pick them up after they’re done. There’s no on-site child care, so if you need a place for your little ones other than with an instructor, it’s best to investigate options near wherever you’re staying. Other resorts and the towns have childcare centers, and there’s in-room sitting available in the area from providers such as Resort Sitters and Mountain Sitters.
Arapahoe Basin’s ski patrol is considered by some to be one of the best in Colorado. Their avalanche control is world-class, and considering they actually let people ski stuff like the East Wall, it has to be! Other resorts send their patrollers here to train, so you know you’re in good hands. If you need their help, there are patrol phones all over the mountain, or you can ask any A-Basin employee.
Health and Wellbeing
The First Aid Room is near the Kids Center in the base area. It has a private exam room and waiting area, new beds, and medical equipment. For serious injuries, the Ski Patrol stays in touch with St. Anthony Summit County Medical Center in Frisco. There are no spa, physiotherapy or exercise facilities on the mountain, but the other resorts and Frisco, Dillon, and Silverthorne have them, so you can check around where you’re staying. The town of Breckenridge also maintains a well-appointed recreation center.
There is an ATM in the base area, and credit cards (Visa, MasterCard, and American Express) are accepted throughout Arapahoe Basin.
There are WiFi hotspots at the Legends Café and 6th Alley in the base area A-Frame as well as in the Black-Mountain Lodge mid-mountain. Cell service is available depending on your carrier and where you are on the mountain.
There’s no tubing or sledding at Arapahoe Basin, but there is at the Frisco Adventure Park. It’s easy to get to, and also has a beginner’s ski slope and sleigh rides! $25 gets you an hour and as many runs as you can get.
There’s no heli or catskiing at A-Basin, either. You might be able to catch a ride on a cat if, for example, you wind up below the lower terminal of the Zuma Lift, but that’s the grooming crew doing you a favor and not a formal program run by the resort, so you shouldn’t really plan on it!
If your schedule allows and you want to see a spectacle, April 1st (no fooling!) is the biggest party on the Beach. Enjoy the silly ski outfits, and the competition to see who can do the most outlandish line off the Pali chair!