4 Dec 2012
The slogan for Aspen/Snowmass is "The Power of Four" - which refers to the four local skiing mountains in and around Aspen - Aspen Mountain, Aspen Highlands, Buttermilk and Snowmass. Never has a slogan been more accurate, as each of these four Aspen resorts provide a unique destination that is chock-full of on-mountain amenities.
Each individually nestled in the White River National Forest, these resorts offers up their own blend of terrain, ranging from beginner to advanced and including everything from beginners' ski schools to extreme half-pipes for snowboarding experts. Below is a closer look at each resort: ASPEN MOUNTAIN - "Ajax" as the locals call it. Located in the heart of downtown Aspen, the Silver Queen Gondola whisks riders from the gondola plaza (8,104 feet) to the summit (12,510 feet) in around 18 minutes. Many Frias guests enjoy staying close to the gondola at a variety of complexesA located only one block from the gondola. Aspen Mountain is also accessible from Lift 1A on Aspen Street. Many guests of Frias Properties choose the Galena Street Neighborhood for its' easy access to the mountain from this ski lift. In total, there are eight lifts to help you navigate the front and back sides of Aspen Mountain - 1 gondola, 1 high-speed quad, 1 high-speed double, 1 quad, 2 doubles, and 2 secondary aEU" 1 quad (Little Nell) and 1 double (Bell Mountain). The mountain consists of 675 acres with 76 total trails. Forty-eight percent of the trails are rated "more difficult," while 26 percent are "most difficult" and 26 percent are considered "expert." If you work up an appetite on the mountain, don't fret. Grab a bite at one of four on-mountain restaurants - The Sundeck,A Bonnie's,A Ajax Tavern, and Montagna Restaurant and Bar inside The Little Nell. ASPEN HIGHLANDS - A locals' favorite, Aspen Highlands is located just three miles from downtown Aspen, and is accessible via the free bus service.With a base of 8,040 feet and a summit of 11,675 feet, Aspen Highlands offers up 118 trails across 1,028 acres of terrain. That's 84 miles of trails! And, don't forget the amazing Highlands Bowl, at 12,392 feet, which is a unique experience in its own right. Frias guests can enjoy ski-in, ski-out access A at this resort if they choose. Highlands offers 18 percent of its terrain for beginners, 30 percent is rated "more difficult" while 16 percent is "most difficult" and 36 percent is rated "expert." There are five lifts in total - 3 high-speed quads and 2 triples. Check out Four Mountain Sports at the base of the mountain for equipment needs, or grab a bite to eat at Cloud Nine Alpine Bistro or the Merry-Go-Round. BUTTERMILK - Home of the annual X-Games, Buttermilk is just three miles outside of Aspen and six miles from Snowmass, accessible via the free city bus. The mountains offers 44 trails totaling 21 miles. The base is 7,870 feet while the summit is 9,900 feet. Buttermilk is also a beginner-friendly resort, with 35 percent of its trails rated "easiest." Thirty-nine percent are rated "more difficult" while 26 percent are "most difficult." There are no expert trails at Buttermilk. To challenge you, Buttermilk has two unique terrain parks. The Panda Pipe and Ski & Snowboard Schools Park is for beginners, while Buttermilk Park offers more than 100 features - includingA an X Games slopestyle course and a 22-foot superpipe. Buttermilk has eight lifts - 1 high-speed quad, 1 double, 2 handle tows, and 2 ski and snowboard school lifts. During down time, check out one of two on-mountain restaurants - Bumps and The Cliffhouse. Frias offers guests great private home rental opportunities close to Buttermilk and right on the free bus line. SNOWMASS - It's snow-massive. The Snowmass resort covers 3,132 acres (that's 147 miles of trails!) and features 91 runs with three terrain parks, one beginner pipe and one superpipe - which is a whopping 22 feet high! Snowmass has a base elevation of 8,104 feet and a summit of 12,510 feet. The longest run is 5.3 miles. Six percent of the terrain is rated "easiest," while 50 percent is "more difficult" and 12 percent is "most difficult." Thirty-two percent is for experts only. Many Frias guests enjoy staying at the Independence Square hotel in downtown Aspen, then catching the free local bus to Snowmass. The bus station is less than one block from the Independence Square. Aspen Mountain is also only one block away! In total, there are 21 lifts at the resort, including an eight-passenger gondola, 1 high-speed six-passenger lift, 1 six-passenger pulse gondola, 7 high-speed quads,A 2 quads, and 4 ski/snowboard school lifts (including magic carpets). Hungry? Select from one of nine on-mountain restaurants: Sneaky's Tavern, Sam's Smokehouse, Up 4 Pizza, Two CreeksA Cafe, Lynn Britt Cabin, Burlingame Cabin, Ullrhof, Gwyn's High Alpine and Cafe Suzanne. Check out retail opportunities at Four-Mountain Sports/D&E Ski and Snowboard Shop on the Snowmass Village Mall, Four-Mountain Sports at Two Creeks, Beginner's Magic at Base Village or Four-Mountain Kids at The Treehouse Kids' Adventure Center. For ski maps covering all four of Aspen's resorts and more info, CLICK HERE.