⛷️ 🏂 Great Places for Families to Ski and Snowboard in Colorado

By Kyrie Collins, Macaroni KID Highlands Ranch-Parker-Castle Rock-Lone Tree Publisher and Sarah Hauge, Macaroni KID Englewood-Greenwood Village-Centennial Publisher February 12, 2024

Colorado has world-class skiing and boarding for all ages, but skiing with a family can be challenging. Lift ticket prices add up quickly, kids need gear every year (and sometimes mid-season), and lugging everything from the parking lot to the chair lift can ruin the day.

We've found ways to save on ski and snowboard equipment and have started to check out the smaller, independent ski resorts. We hope our tips help make it a little more affordable for you, too. Let the season begin!


Junior rental programs are affordable programs for growing kids. You can get complete sets of used equipment for $100-$150, which includes skis, boots, and bindings, or a full snowboard setup with boots and deck.

Equipment can be exchanged as often as needed during the season to ensure the size and fit are comfortable for your child. Find out more at:

If you need to rent equipment at the resort, always look for coupons in the local discount books or online first to save 10-25%. offers over a dozen printable coupons. Don't forget helmets. Be a good role model, and get one for yourself, too!

Save yourself time and effort, too... get our free Family Ski Trip Packing List printable!


The ski resorts listed below already have more affordable lift ticket prices, but you can get an even better deal with these programs:

  • Gems Card: Choose between 2-for-1 single-day adult tickets or 30% off one single-day adult ticket at Arapahoe Basin, Cooper, Echo Mountain, Eldora, Granby Ranch, Hesperus, Loveland, Monarch, Powderhorn, Purgatory, and Sunlight. Plus, at Arapahoe Basin, choose a $79 midweek adult ticket (Tuesday–Thursday) or a $99 weekend adult ticket (Friday–Monday), good for two uses at A-Basin.
  • Kids Ski Cheap with the 3rd-6th Grade CSCUSA Passport Program: Participants get four (4) days of skiing or snowboarding at EACH of CSCUSA's 20 member resorts for $65: Arapahoe Basin, Aspen Highlands, Aspen Mountain, Buttermilk, Cooper, Copper Mountain, Echo Mountain, Eldora, Granby Ranch, Hesperus, Howelsen Hill, Loveland, Monarch, Powderhorn, Purgatory, Snowmass, Steamboat, Sunlight, Telluride, and Winter Park


28194 US Hwy 6, Dillon, CO 80435
Guests can enjoy 1,428 acres of skiable terrain with a summit elevation of 13,050 ft. A-Basin, as the locals call it, is typically open from October until June.

232 CR 29, Leadville, CO 80461
Skiiers and snowboarders can enjoy 480 acres of terrain with a summit elevation of 11,700 ft. Cooper is typically open for skiing from December through April. This is one of our new favorites. I love the varied terrain for beginners, plus they have a giant magic carpet for new skiers. 

19285 CO-103, Idaho Springs, CO 80452
Ski or snowboard your way across this 60-acre snow haven. Add tubing to your itinerary here as well. Echo Mountain is typically open from November through April. 

2861 Eldora Ski Road #140, Nederland, CO 80466
Eldora is known for being an excellent place for learning how to ski and snowboard due to its mellow terrain. You can explore nearly 700 acres of snowy mountain fun beginning in November.

1000 Village Rd., Granby, CO 80446
Ski day or night with the whole family across 400 acres of diverse terrain. Grandy Ranch is typically open from December through April.

9848 Highway US-160, Hesperus, CO 81326
Just minutes from downtown Durango, Hesperus Ski Area offers 26 trails on 60 skiable acres, with 150 inches of annual snowfall. They offer night skiing and also snow tubing on Marmot Hill. 

Due to an unexpected and significant mechanical failure, Hesperus is closed for the 2023-2024 season.

1 Kendall Place, Silverton, CO, 81433
Kendall Mountain may be one of the smallest Rocky Mountain resorts at 16 acres, but it offers mighty big fun for families. With a smaller footprint and lower costs, Kendall Mountain is a family-friendly option great for beginner skiers and snowboarders. Ages 5 and younger ski for FREE every day of the season (reservations required)!

I-70, exit 216, Georgetown, CO 80444
With its proximity to the Denver metro area, Loveland is a great skiing spot for locals and tourists alike. Adventure across 1,800 acres of beautiful snowy mountainsides. Loveland typically opens for winter operations in November.

23715 US-50, Salida, CO 81201
More than 800 acres of fresh-powdered mountainside await families at Monarch Mountain during the winter season. Don't forget your sunscreen — the summit reaches almost 12,000 feet!

48338 Powderhorn Rd., Mesa, CO 81643
At the edge of Grand Mesa sits a winter wonderland ideal for skiing and snowboarding. Powderhorn offers 1,600 acres of family-friendly adventures and tree-skiing for more experienced athletes.

10901 County Road 117, Glenwood Springs, CO 81601
Skip the crowds with family fun at Sunlight Mountain Resort, a 730-acre escape for skiers and snowboarders alike. Wrap up your vacation by warming up in the hot springs.

Get more information about Colorado's best ski resorts for families by visiting