You can read about every Colorado ski resort in the Edge, our winter sports guide, as we roll it out online. Each description lays out what's new, what the signature experience is, what to splurge on, how to go cheap and, of course, what to drink.
Opening December 11
SUNLIGHT MOUNTAIN RESORT
What’s new: Look for major renovations to the Sunlight Lodge and a remodeled cafeteria, as well as new gladed terrain on the mountain.
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Signature experience: “A lot of people come here to put a notch in their belt buckle after knocking off a run down Heathen, Colorado’s steepest run,” says Sunlight spokesman Troy Hawks. “For an extra notch, do it on January 16 during the Dynafit Heathen Challenge, when competitors will also hike up the same run as part of the Colorado Ski Mountaineering Cup. We also have one of Colorado’s longest runs: Ute is about 2.5 miles long, and it’s named for the local tribe that comes here each year to give us blessings for good snow.”
Splurge: “We have great snowmobile tours that will get you into the White River National Forest, starting at $110 for an hour-long, sixteen-mile ride with 360-degree views of the stunning Mt. Sopris, West Elk Mountains and Flat Tops Wilderness area,” says Hawks. “And then we have another tour that starts at $185 and is popular because we let you into an open field in an area called Baylor Park and let you have at it on a huge undulating meadow that’s like a natural terrain park. It’s a ripping time.”
Ski bum tips: “We’re one of the cheapest ski days in the state at $54 for a lift ticket, and with 680 acres, a 2,000-foot vertical drop, and 67 runs in all,” Hawks says. “We also have great ski/swim/stay packages that include a day of skiing here at Sunlight, a swim at the Glenwood Hot Springs, and your choice of eight of the top-end lodging options in town, starting at about $90. We call it the Colorado ski vacation families can actually afford.”
Drink locally: Find local brews on tap, nightly drink specials, and Friday Afternoon Club free appetizers in the Sunlight Lodge at the base area. In town, try Glenwood Canyon Brewing. “You should also stop in at Doc Holliday’s Tavern if you’re looking for some authentic Wild West,” Hawks suggests. “It’s family-friendly before about 10 p.m., then less so until 2 a.m.” Headed in the other direction out of town? Try Marble Distilling, Roaring Fork Beer Company, and Carbondale Beer Works, all in nearby Carbondale.