skiier jumping

Bracing for Another Big Season at Glenwood’s Sunlight Mountain Resort

With Ski Swim Stay packages available to book now, Colorado’s family-friendly ski resort near Glenwood Springs is prepping for another record-breaking season. One that includes an early opening date and showcasing new terrain that’s part of the resort’s East Ridge expansion.

With a spate of early-season snow and temperatures cold enough to prevent it from melting, there’s chatter among Sunlight Mountain Resort insiders that the ski area’s planned opening date will be pumped up a few days starting being open on the weekend of Dec. 6. In addition to recent heavy snowfalls, the resort is also making snow to bolster what Mother Nature has begun in Glenwood Springs.

family taking group picture

@holleypixel shared with #visitglenwood via Instagram

Early Opening 

Sunlight Mountain resort will be opening this weekend for the weekend Dec. 6 and open for the season on Dec 13. Troy Hawks, Marketing and Sales Director of Sunlight Mountain Resort cautioned that while snowmaking operations are underway, the ski area is closed to activities and advised the uphilling community, which includes hikers, snowshoers, cross-country skiers and those who use the Babbish Gulch backcountry trails, to wait to enjoy the slopes until snowmaking is complete.

women uphilling on snowy mountain at sunrise

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Ascension Matters

For those unfamiliar with the term “uphilling or skinning,” it’s one of an array of Glenwood Springs winter activities. Uphill enthusiasts take a pass on riding the lifts, and instead prefer to reach the top under their own steam, all for one glorious and well-earned run down. Because it is such a popular activity, Sunlight has instituted the Uphill Passport Program, a free permit for ascenders. The goal of the program is to prevent accidents and injuries, as well as establish and maintain a communicative dialogue with uphill users.

skier in powder

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Experts-only East Ridge Expansion Notes

Adding to the anticipation of the upcoming ski season is the reveal of new terrain on the resort’s East Ridge, a double black diamond area known for its heart-thumping, precipitous vertical. In July, Sunlight Mountain Resort announced it was embarking on a multi-year, three-phase, $4 million dollar project. When complete, the East Ridge expansion will add a new lift, as well as nearly 100 acres of additional terrain.

This summer, trail maintenance crews performed extensive glade work to the ski resort’s existing Aligator Alleys, Deception, Defiance and Perry’s Plunge runs. Clearing the trees from below Midland Traverse has already added approximately 500 vertical feet of decent to Lower Defiance and Lower Deception for skiers and riders, with more to come in the seasons ahead.

kids posing while skiing

Family-friendly Skiing & Riding

While the East Ridge attracts adrenaline junkies, about 75 percent of Sunlight’s terrain is rated as beginner or intermediate, making it a top Colorado destination for skiing families. With nearly 700 skiable acres and a 2,000-foot vertical drop, Sunlight offers big skiing at an affordable price. Ski Swim Stay packages are especially ideal, bundling savings on lift tickets, hot springs and lodging. The best part is the package price includes children 12 and under skiing for free (one per paying adult). Slope & Soak 4-Packs are another savings-oriented option, combining skiing at Sunlight with geothermal soaking at either Iron Mountain Hot Springs or Glenwood Hot Springs for four people.

family soaking

@thejetsettingfamily shared with #visitglenwood via Instagram

Other family-friendly perks of the hometown ski area are that it offers some of most affordable ski lessons in the nation. For riders who like to show off, Sunlight’s terrain park boasts small, medium and large jump lines with several features, all within view of the base lodge where families and friends can meet to warm up, eat and relax.

Go big this winter with a fun, value-packed family ski vacation to Glenwood Springs.

Book your Ski Swim Stay package today!

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skiier jumping

Cover shot (c) @ethan_demoraes shared with #visitglenwood via Instagram