You are here

The Seasons Within Aspen's Ski Season

Posted: 10 Sep 2021

To an outsider, winter in Aspen may appear to be one long stretch of snowy, cold days filled with skiing, apres ski, and nights on the town. After you've spent a season or two in this magical destination, you'll see that there are many seasons within the Aspen Snowmass ski season.

Read on to learn more about each mini-season's character, events, and snow conditions.

Early Season


Early Season Skiing in Aspen

With building excitement for each "first" of the ski season, this time of year has infectious energy. Aspen Mountain and Snowmass open first with Aspen Highlands and Buttermilk close behind. On opening day, the true locals will queue up early for the first chair (or gondola) of the season, and the stoke is a palable as the smell of sizzling bacon from hibachis in the lift line.

While snow coverage is less predictable than mid-season, Aspen Snowmass ski resorts don't require a deep base to have good skiing conditions. Plus, Aspen Snowmass has excellent snowmaking infrastructure and recently installed top-to-bottom snowmaking on Aspen Mountain. According to OpenSnow,

Special Offer: Receive your 4th Night Free between Nov. 25 and Dec. 17, 2021. See details >>

Holiday Season


Holiday Season in Aspen

Festive cheer permeates every corner of Aspen during the holidays with twinkling lights adorning downtown streets and family-friend events during the 12 Days of Aspen. Celebrities and Aspen's jetset hit the town for glitzy parties, culminating in New Year's Eve, possibly the most indulgent night of the year in Aspen.

By the holiday season, all four Aspen Snowmass ski areas are open and typically have a solid base under the most trafficked runs. Unlike rockier resorts, it only takes a couple big storms to open up expert zones.

Booking Tip: Secure your lodging early! Town sells out during these weeks.

Quiet Mid-Winter Weeks


Mid-Winter Skiing in Aspen

If you've happened upon an off-peak winter week, then you know that Aspen is not always filled to the gills. Enjoy uncrowded slopes and big savings in early / late January, early / late February, and early March.

Early January may be the most reliable "secret season" when holiday crowds depart. Back in the 1950s, Aspen was so quiet that ski lifts shut down and locals had to enterain themselves with an invented festival: Winterskol. The annual "toast to winter" remains, but the slopes stay open while locals and visitors alike celebrate Aspen's alpine lifestyle. This year's Winterskol is scheduled for Jan. 13 - 16, 2022.

This middle season (between January and early March) has predictably good conditions with colder temperatures that preserve powder days long after the flakes have flown.

Special Offer: Save 25% on 10 nights, 20% on 7 nights, or 15% on 4 nights between Jan. 2 - April 2, 2022. See details >>

Gay Ski Week & ESPN's Winter X Games

(JAN. 16 - 23, 2022)

Gay Ski Week in Aspen

This winter, two of our most well-attended events collide, with Gay Ski Week running into ESPN'S Winter X Games (Jan. 16 - 23, 2022). Join in the fun or orbit around the well-contained events!

If you've ever watched X Games on TV, you know that there's always a HUGE storm during this time of year.

Booking Tip: Secure your lodging early! Aspen sells out during this busy week.

Presidents' Week

(FEB. 14 - 22, 2022)

Presidents Week in Aspen

Another busy time of year, families flock to Aspen Snowmass for this mid-winter school break. Mid-winter conditions are prime, and this is when the chairlifts start staying open late, extending the ski day until 4 p.m. Aspen Snowmass typically hosts a Bud Light Hi-Fi Concert over the holiday weekend, although in 2021 they presented pop-up music events across the four mountains to maintain social distancing.

February is prime time for big winter storms to bestow Aspen Snowmass with soft, fluffy powder. And while Presidents' Week in Aspen is a peak winter period, skiers can spread out across our four ski areas, making lift lines a non-issue. Just make sure you book those dinner reservations well in advance!

Spring Break


Spring Break in Aspen Snowmass

School breaks are spread out between mid-March and early April, and we welcome families to the ski slopes for long days of memory-making! Aspen Snowmass typically hosts the bulk of their Bud Light Hi-Fi Concert Series, and March is peak apres-ski season.

March is Aspen's snowiest month on average, so there's a good chance you'll score great days on the mountain. And if the snow doesn't fall, sunny patios and cold drinks are a nice consolation prize!

Special Offer: Save 25% on 10 nights, 20% on 7 nights, or 15% on 4 nights between Jan. 2 - April 2, 2022. See details >>

Late Season


April skiing in Aspen

Temps warm up, crowds wane, and savings abound. Ski season stretches until April 17, and there's always a possibility of an extension! Plus you'll get to experience Aspen Snowmass's closing days, including the notorious party at Aspen Highlands. Think: pond skims, DJ sets, and crazy outfits plus plenty of libations to toast another great winter in the books.

Snow conditions range from perfect spring slush to endless winter at high elevations. This is the perfect time of year for sun-chasers to get a Vitamin-D boost in Aspen.

Special Offer: Receive your 4th Night Free between April 3 - 17, 2022. See details >>

Are you inspired to book your Aspen ski vacation?

Start planning your Aspen ski trip by browsing our selection of centrally located vacation rentals. Alternatively, you can speak with our Aspen-based reservations team members who can recommend specific lodging and time periods for your upcoming visit. Fill out a brief form here.