Fair to partly cloudy, not too bad, not the greatest

by: MarkGerardy - Aug 30, 2011

  • Overall Rating 4
  • Family Friendly 5
  • All Mtn. Terrain 4
  • Terrain Park 4
  • Nightlife 4

    Pros: Intuitively laid out, cannot get lost, great spots for beginners

    Cons: Dated, has not expanded in decades

    Recommended For: Singles, Family Friendly, Empty Nesters

    Date Visited: Mar 1, 2011


Full review

Copper Mountain is conveniently located off exit 195 just down the road from Frisco and Silverthorne. There is plenty parking at the free lot in the front while the shuttle bus takes you on a very short drive directly to the lifts. Copper Mountain is the most easily-laid out, intuitive, impossible-to-get lost mountain ever made. When facing the mountain: Advance skiing is to the left, Intermediate in the middle, Beginners on the right side of the mountain.

While the back bowls still pale in comparison to Breckenridge, they are still quite respectable, but sometime take some serious poling or even hiking to get to depending upon the lift taken. Resolution bowl, a side bowl, can be a nice, powdery-mogul challenge whereas Copper bowl is more prone to get crusty, but are fantastic on a powder day. Despite all statistics, the mountain and its run seem long, perhaps because many of the ski runs go from the very top of the mountain to the very bottom. The Copper Mountain is very convex, adding to the feel that the mountain runs are very long, whereas Arapahoe Basin and crested Butte are much more concave.

Like Breckenridge's T-Bar, Copper Mountain has poma lift Storm King, which would someday be a very nice improvement if made into a full chair lift. Beautiful pictures on the top after taking either Sierra or Rendezvous Lifts.

Upper Enchanted Forest is exactly this, a very enchanted place of wonder, mystery, intrigue and mystique. A must see for glade skiers. Unless you really like moguls and ski them well, consider Too Much, Far East and Triple Treat with a word of caution. The black diamond ski slopes under Super Bee are much more forgiving with fewer moguls.

Union Creek can get you quickly trapped into a place with lots of beginning skiers in crowded lift lines, and no way out except to take the High Point lift. The far right side gets VERY flat and is not a place for snowboards who lack ski poles.

There is a nice restaurant at the base of Super Bee lift and this is a decent place to set up your base camp, whereas Union Creek is much more crowded and a bit of a trap to get out of to the rest of the mountain. Center Village is second place to East village's Super Bee. Beyond the magic carpets, quaint and peacefully pretty Green Acres is a nice transition for Class 2 beginning skiers to hone their stills in an unintimidating environment.

Overall, Copper Mountain is a cross between no-frills Arapahoe Basin and Keystone: while nice and offers some great skiing, Copper Mountain feels dated, the ski lifts feel antiquated by Breckenridge's standards. While the villages are nice, Copper Mountain just has a feel that it needs some renovation - either more terrain expansion, a gondola, a logo makeover, a fresh coat of paint on the ski lift chairs, more shops and businesses or something. Copper Mountain has not expanded their terrain in decades. While a great place to ski, and a wonderful place to learn to ski, Copper Mountain has a shelf life and can get old after 4-6 days of skiing.

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