Aspen Area Resources
Aspen Local Tips
Having local knowledge of a new area is always very helpful. While most locals won't give away every little secret, such as sweet parking spots, or powder stashes on the mountain, there are things that just make sense to let people know about, here are some things we thought you would like to know:
Eat at the bar: Most restaurants offer a discounted menu – same great food, lower price!
Facebook: Make sure you are friends with Ski Butlers to be in the “know” for deals happening in Aspen.
Free Aspen to Snowmass Bus: The bus is free from Aspen to Snowmass and everywhere in between.
Free Parking on Sundays: Parking is free in Aspen and Snowmass on Sundays
Free Skier Shuttle: There are designated skier shuttles that run from mountain to mountain.
Gondola: You can buy a separate gondola foot traffic pass for Ajax or Snowmass Mountains if you aren't looking to ski but would like to have lunch up top.
Protect your head: Always wear a helmet! Even the best skiers on the mountain wear a helmet – some even wear it to the bars after, can’t be too careful!
Pamper yourself: Make sure to take the time to relax, I mean really relax. Visit the Aspen Club and Spa for a massage, facial or just to take a steam.
See the rockies in a new way: with Gateway Canyons Air Tours - Gateway Canyons will arrange a private air tour with the professional, seasoned pilots from Gateway Canyons Air Tours. Board the luxurious Cessna Caravan and enjoy an eagle’s eye view of the fascinating geography and ancient cultural wonders of the area.
Aspen Mountain Guide
Aspen Mountain Guide
Aspen Mountain has been a skiing crowd favorite ever since it’s opening in 1947. Located in the White River National Forest, Aspen Mountain sits among "the big four” of Snowmass, Aspen Highlands, and Buttermilk. With only about 673 acres of skiing terrain, what Aspen lacks in acreage, it makes up in vertical rise.
With a 3,267 foot vertical drop, Aspen Ski Resort has always been a favorite for its steep runs and world-class moguls. This is also why it was a “ski only” facility until 2001, when it changed that rule to finally allow snowboarders to grace its snowy face. Skiers have also been protective of the mountain’s skier-only terrain park, making the resort a perfect place for skiers who want to hone their park skills without having to avoid herds of snowboarders. Aspen Mountain has the best of both worlds, with its fabulously smooth groomers and its heart-pounding tree runs. It is also home to beautiful cross-country ski trails, snow-cat rides, and hiking tours.
The mountain consists of 76 meticulously groomed trails. The steepest one, the Silver Queen, sits at an angle of 42 degrees. Aspen Mountain is not a place for beginners—in fact there is not one beginner trail. Types of runs range from more difficult, to most difficult, to expert. Aspen has eight lifts with small lines and on a crowded day, there are only 3 skiers allowed per acre, allowing for lots of elbowroom. Their Silver Queen Gondola is one of a kind, where riders sit facing back to back for optimal breathtaking mountain views through the floor-to-ceiling windows. It was given a complete facelift in 2006 and now boasts an impressive 147 Swiss-made cabins.
Aspen Mountain has runs that end right in town, perfect for lodging and dining convenience. The locals will tell you the mountain’s best-kept secret is off the groomed runs, where you will find double-black-diamond trails all to yourself.
Right at the base of the mountain sits the epicenter of downtown Aspen. Usually a fantastic place to spot celebrities, the dining and nightlife in Aspen is unmatched. Beneath its star-studded clientele and high-end real estate lies a quaint little town rich in history. The friendly and casual attitude is a nice break from the busy hustle of normal life. Life is slowed down at the Aspen Ski Resort, and visitors are expected to take a deep breath, look around and take it all in. A perfect mix of relaxation and thrills reveals itself on Aspen's Slopes. At the base you will find top-of-the-line boutiques, world-renowned restaurants, beautiful Victorian architecture, art galleries, and shops. Lodging is available for all budget levels from luxury villas to comfortable hotels.
Aspen Mountain is truly an ideal ski resort if you want to spend quality time and make unforgettable memories with your family. The people are friendly, the snow is plentiful, the views are breathtaking, and the slopes are always ready to ride so ask yourself what are you waiting for? Plan your Aspen Ski Resort vacation today.
History of Aspen
History of Aspen
The Aspen area was originally discovered by the Ute Indians and called "Shining Mountains". The first silver miners arrived in the Roaring Fork Valley in the summer of 1879 and by that fall a small group of entrepreneurs and speculators had staked claims and set up camp at the foot of Aspen Mountain. Prospectors settled in Aspen hoping to strike it rich in silver. Before a permanent settlement could be established, news of a nearby Indian uprising prompted Colorado's Governor Frederick Pitkin to urge the settlers to flee back across the Continental Divide for their safety. Most of them did, and only a handful of settlers remained in the Roaring Fork Valley during the winter of 1879. Those that remained attempted to organize the camp and passed a resolution to respect the claims of those who had fled, as well as the claims of those settlers who stayed. This action transformed the small group of settlers into a "sovereign" body in the eyes of the State of Colorado and recognized that the rules of local mining districts under the federal mining law of 1866 was to be followed. The citizens had begun the process of organizing themselves into a political body.
First christened Ute City, the town of 300 residents was renamed to Aspen in 1880. By 1891 Aspen had surpassed Leadville as the nation's largest single silver producing mining district. By 1893, Aspen was a booming silver town with 12,000 people, six newspapers, two railroads, four schools, three banks, electric lights, a modern hospital, two theaters, an opera house, and a very small brothel district. In 1893 however the Sherman Silver Act was repealed which demonetized silver and marked Aspen's decline as a mining town. Ironically, one of the largest nuggets of native silver ever found was mined in 1894 in Aspen from the Smuggler mine, weighing in at 2,350 pounds.
Around 1936, another ore was discovered - SNOW! Three investors sought to establish a ski area above Aspen. Unfortunately World War II halted progress on the ski area, but after the war, Friedl Pfeifer, a member of the 10th Mountain Division, who trained at Camp Hale near Leadville, returned to Aspen and began making plans for Aspen's first chair lift. In 1945, Chicago industrialist, Walter Paepcke and his wife Elizabeth came to Aspen and joined forces with Pfeifer in the development of the Aspen ski area. In 1946 the Aspen Skiing Corporation was founded and in 1950 Aspen hosted the FIS World Championships, which confirmed Aspen's status as an international resort. The rest is history!
(Courtesy of Aspen Historical Society) For more info visit Aspen Historical Society.