Overview of Copper Mountain, Colorado
Written by Jack Lee
Copper Mountain is just 75 miles from Denver with 2,465 acres of skiable terrain and a lively base village - an Intrawest design with Rocky Mountain style lodging and après ski steps away from the speedy ski lifts. Copper often has classic dry light Colorado snow due to its very high elevation, the base is at 9,700' and skiing reaches over 12,300' - that's higher than Vail. Copper's elevation can take some acclimating on your first ski day here, so stay hydrated and pace yourself among all this tempting terrain.
The US Forest Service declares Copper Mountain's terrain as ideal, naturally divided from beginner to expert terrain. Copper does indeed have skiing and riding for all abilities, lower mountain wide super mellow well-groomed trails at Lumber Jack and Union Creek, to fantastic steeper bowl skiing at the upper elevations of 12,000'+, and plenty of glades, great trails, terrain parks, and bumps in between. Skiers right is grittier black diamond terrain that drops swiftly to the Alpine and Super Bee six pack chair. For an adventure from 12,300’, ski wind-drifted natural snow above tree line on Copper’s vast summit – the 12s, which include Copper Bowl, Spaulding, Enchanted Forest and Union Meadows then continue all the way to the base on Encore or Collage for an almost 3,000’ vertical run, a non-stopper at Copper, it's literally breathtaking – from high-alpine down through heavenly snow-caked towering pines, long sweeping trails covered in fresh powdery snow.
Another big mountain adventure is to catch Copper's snow cat, free, Friday - Sunday, up Tucker Mountain, you hike the final 30 minutes along West Ridge of Copper Bowl. This is untouched high alpine terrain for experts looking for an inbounds back country style adventure - its run by the ski patrol, monitored, but completely au naturel.
Après ski, Copper shine shines too, with a beautiful mountainside village, Burning Stone Plaza - a pedestrian village by Intrawest, is perfectly filled with the best après ski pubs like Jack and Jill's- with live music and views of Woodward's huge half pipe for added entertainment. Endo's, Incline, and CB Grille are great for western fare. For an easy sit-down service ski lunch, go to JJ's Tavern in East Village by the Super Bee six pack lift. Copper's three Villages, East, Center, and West all have casual restaurants, bars, a Starbucks, ski shops, ice skating, and tons of condominium hotel buildings. For activities off the slopes, there's snowshoeing, snowmobiling, Alpine Rush Ziplining, and a Swimming Pool, Fitness Center and Spa, plus a kids-only lodge. Copper sprawls with condo-style hotels in East and West Village, still walkable or there's a shuttle, but we like the Center Village best for its convenient pedestrian plaza and best morning lifts American Eagle and American Flyer.
Copper is also host to amazing terrain parks and Woodward Copper Ski and Snowboard Camps for the training of young freeskiers and riders that run both winter and summer. Also Copper Speed Training Center is the US Ski Team Official Training Center with a downhill practice arena for our alpine ski racers in the early ski season, thanks to high elevation and snowmaking assets. In fact, Copper makes our Top Ski Western Resorts for Early Season Skiing due to its high elevation and snowmaking priority - often open by early November.
Copper is a gold mine for skiers looking for proximity to Denver, just under two hours drive on I-70, and lots of diverse terrains plus good snow due to its high elevation. A week's ski vacation here would be fun in the casual but vibrant village with entertainment and fun après ski activities, dog sledding, snowmobiling and sleigh rides. Copper is among our Top 10 Colorado Ski Resorts and a Top Ski Resorts For Family Vacation since the village has everything you need slopeside, from lodging to lessons, après ski and amusements. You can also combine Copper with a ski trip visiting nearby Vail, Beaver Creek, Keystone, and Breckenridge, or Winter Park – all within an hour and easy flight in and out of Denver.
I've been going to Copper for 20+ years and it's still a top favorite. Great mountain for all skill levels. Very nice accommodations and packaged. Not too far from Denver. All around great place.
My favorite. Copper has the best terrain in a condensed area. No wasted time on cat walks and lots of lifts to get where you need. Not as crowded as other resorts near summit also.
Opening and closing dates
|Season||Open Date||Close Date|
|2017/2018||11/12/2017 (estimated)||04/20/2018 (estimated)|