Disappointing photos show what it’s like to go skiing in Colorado

From $40 burgers to four-hour visitors, Insider’s creator skilled a handful of disappointments on Colorado’s ski slopes this winter.Monica Humphries/Insider

  • I have been snowboarding and snowboarding at a handful of ski resorts throughout Colorado this winter.

  • Whereas there’s a lot to like concerning the sports activities, there are additionally loads of drawbacks.

  • Crowds and prices had been the 2 largest disappointments I skilled on the slopes this 12 months.

Nothing can examine to the sensation of chilly snow hitting my face as I zoom down a mountain on a snowboard.

The author snowboarding at the Winter Park Resort.

The creator snowboarding on the Winter Park Resort.Katie Sproles

Learn extra: I grew up in Florida and simply tried snowboarding for the primary time. I realized 7 shocking issues, like how uncomfortable the gear is and what it means to ‘pizza’

And I am not alone in loving the fun that snowboarding and snowboarding present. In actual fact, The Colorado Solar reported that greater than 14 million individuals frolicked on the state’s slopes final 12 months.

The base of the Winter Park Resort in Colorado.

Skiers at a resort in Colorado.Monica Humphries/Insider

Supply: The Colorado Solar

Snowboarding and snowboarding draw loads of individuals and for a great purpose. It is a strategy to keep lively within the chilly winter months, view spectacular mountain surroundings, and spend time with mates.

The author rests and straps into her snowboard.

The creator rests and straps into her snowboard.Monica Humphries/Insider

And whereas I can title loads of advantages of snowboarding in Colorado, I’ve additionally skilled fairly just a few disappointments on the slopes.

The author laughs off a long line for shuttle buses after a day of skiing at on Colorado's Copper Mountain.

The creator laughs off a protracted line for shuttle buses after a day of snowboarding in Colorado.Monica Humphries/Insider

Learn extra: I paid over $1,200 for one weekend of snowboarding — almost the identical price as my lease. Take a more in-depth take a look at how costly the game actually is.

The most important disappointment, in my view, has been the large crowds.

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Crowds wait for a lift at the Winter Park Resort in Colorado

Crowds await a carry.Monica Humphries/Insider

These crowds impression journeys earlier than they’ve even began. With a view to keep away from visitors on weekends, I’ve heard tales of mates setting alarms as early as 4 a.m. — 5 hours earlier than lifts begin working at most Colorado mountains.

A screenshot of alarms the author has set for skiing.

A screenshot of alarms the creator has set for snowboarding.Monica Humphries/Insider

Learn extra: I used to be one of many first individuals to journey Amtrak’s Winter Park Categorical practice to a Colorado ski resort this season. Here is what it is like.


The earliest I’ve woken up for snowboarding this season was 5:30 a.m. And even with early morning begins, I’ve nonetheless gotten caught in bumper-to-bumper visitors.

A long line of traffic on Colorado's I-70 highway.

An extended line of visitors on Colorado’s I-70 freeway.Monica Humphries/Insider

Plus, these early mornings have not assured me one of the best parking spot. There have been instances I’ve pulled into resorts and found the closest parking tons already full.

A full parking lot at the Winter Park Resort in Colorado.

An indication signifies {that a} parking zone is full at a Colorado ski resort.Monica Humphries/Insider

Fortunately, all of the resorts I’ve visited had free parking. The draw back is that some tons are farther away from the slopes, so I relied on shuttle buses to take me to the mountains.

A screenshot of the transportation options to-and-from a parking lot at Copper Mountain and the resort.

A screenshot of the transportation choices to-and-from a parking zone at Copper Mountain and the resort.Google Maps

Whereas I appreciated the free shuttles, I skilled massive, unorganized crowds ready to squeeze onto the buses.

Crowds wait for shuttle buses at the Copper Mountain Ski Resort in Colorado.

Crowds await shuttle buses at a ski resort in Colorado.Monica Humphries/Insider

The hordes of individuals resulted in buses that felt like sardine tins. I’ve had undesirable elbows push previous me, and I’ve squished between strangers in an effort to get to the slopes.

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A crowded shuttle bus at the Copper Mountain Ski Resort.

A crowded shuttle bus stuffed with skiers and snowboarders.Monica Humphries/Insider

Relying on visitors, I’ve skilled all the things from brief, five-minute shuttle rides to longer, 20-minute rides. One time, my group even determined it was faster to stroll than sit in visitors on a shuttle bus.

The author and her friends ended up walking to another bus stop instead of sitting in traffic on a shuttle bus.

The creator and her mates ended up strolling to a different bus cease as a substitute of sitting in visitors on a shuttle bus.Monica Humphries/Insider

As soon as on the mountain, I’ve waited as much as 20 minutes for a carry. Some resorts, like Winter Park, have apps the place skiers can verify carry traces. To me, it felt harking back to visiting crowded theme parks like Disney World.

A screenshot shows a 20-minute line at a Winter Park Resort lift.

A screenshot exhibits a 20-minute line at a Winter Park Resort carry.Winter Park Resort

In an announcement despatched to Insider, a consultant for Winter Park Resort mentioned that “there are plenty of variables that go into how lengthy you wait or do not wait to get on a carry,” like windy climate quickly closing a carry.

A line to a get onto a ski lift.

A line to a get onto a ski carry.Monica Humphries/Insider

Different instances, I headed to the again of a single rider line and hoped it will transfer quicker than it appeared.

An arrow points to the end of a lift line on Copper Mountain in Colorado.

An arrow factors to the tip of a single-rider carry line.Monica Humphries/Insider

Again down on the resort, there hasn’t all the time been room on ski racks to retailer my snowboard for breaks. So I’ve left my gear scattered on the bottom.

A full ski rack meant that some people left their gear on the floor

A full ski rack meant that some individuals left their gear on the bottom.Monica Humphries/Insider

Throughout these breaks, I’ve run into my justifiable share of lengthy rest room traces.

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A line outside the bathroom at the Winter Park Resort.

A line for the lavatory at a Colorado ski resort.Monica Humphries/Insider

And I’ve struggled to search out open tables for lunch at eating places and cafeterias.

A crowded restaurant at the Copper Mountain Ski Resort.

A crowded restaurant at a ski resort in Colorado.Monica Humphries/Insider

But it surely’s not simply the crowds that I’ve discovered disappointing about snowboarding and snowboarding. It is also the associated fee, since carry tickets, renting gear, and shopping for meals can add up rapidly.

Between food, ski costs, and lodging, Insider's reporter spent $1,200 on two days of skiing.

Between meals, ski prices, and lodging, snowboarding can price tons of of {dollars}.Monica Humphries/Insider

Learn extra: I spent $1,200 on a weekend ski journey, however I may’ve saved $500 if I prevented these 5 money-sucking errors

Day-of carry tickets hover round $200 at many resorts in Colorado, in keeping with Denver’s 9News. Epic and Ikon season passes, which give riders entry to a number of mountains, ranged between $670 and $1,229 this winter, in keeping with The Factors Man.

Lift ticket prices at Winter Park Resort in January 2023.

Raise ticket costs at Winter Park Resort in January 2023.Winter Park Resort

Supply: 9News, The Factors Man

Rental gear will also be costly. I paid $84 to lease a pair of trainers and a snowboard at Winter Park Resort’s official rental store. In an announcement despatched to Insider, a consultant mentioned that “our gear rental costs are aggressive with different resorts in Colorado.”

The ski and snowboard rental rates at Winter Park.

The ski and snowboard rental charges on the Winter Park Resort.Monica Humphries/Insider

That is not the place the bills finish. There have been instances after I did not pack a lunch and was caught paying resort costs. In a single case, that meant spending almost $40 on a burger after taxes and tip.

Side-by-side images of a $40 burger and a bar's menu.

Aspect-by-side photographs of a $40 burger and a bar’s menu.Monica Humphries/Insider

One other time I shelled out $20 for 3 mushroom tacos. A consultant for Winter Park mentioned that “similar to different meals and beverage institutions, Winter Park Resort has needed to modify costs to maintain up with the present financial local weather.”

Three street tacos cost the author nearly $20.

Three road tacos price the creator almost $20.Monica Humphries/Insider

After hitting the slopes six instances this winter, I’ve realized to anticipate crowds and bills. However I’ve additionally picked up just a few methods to keep away from these disappointments.

The author eats a packed lunch on a different ski trip.

The creator eats a packed lunch on a ski journey.Monica Humphries/Insider

Impartial ski resorts, which are not on the Ikon or Epic passes, usually have cheaper carry tickets. Arapahoe Ski Basin, for instance, sells carry tickets beginning at $89, in keeping with the resort’s web site.

Arapahoe Ski Basin in Colorado.

Arapahoe Ski Basin in Colorado.Kyle Allingham/Getty Photographs

Supply: Arapahoe Ski Basin

And I have been instructed I can keep away from street rage if I ski throughout weekdays as a substitute of weekends.

The Winter Park Resort in Colorado.

The Winter Park Resort in Colorado.Monica Humphries/Insider

Whereas I generally get annoyed getting elbowed off a bus or paying an excessive amount of for tacos, I am grateful I get to be one of the 14 million individuals wanting to hit Colorado’s spectacular slopes.

Insider's author in line for a ski lift.

Insider’s creator in line for a ski carry.Monica Humphries/Insider

For future journeys, I am planning to discover unbiased ski resorts, pack PB&Js, and keep optimistic when visitors backs up.

Insider's author on a slope at the Winter Park Resort.

The creator snowboards down a mountain in Colorado.Monica Humphries/Insider

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