Copper does lots of things well: The 2,465- acre resort has an excellent variety of naturally differentiated terrain that gets more challenging from west to east, and a seriously underrated high alpine filled with adventure terrain—plus a free snowcat to maximize your time there. For families, Copper is one of the best resorts to learn to ski thanks to stellar learning programs, (slightly) lower prices, and a down-to-earth vibe that makes you want to hang a little longer.
The vibe here is somehow simultaneously hip and refreshingly old-school: Go have some damn fun. Copper sees—and markets—itself as the rebel force to the corporate imperial army down the road. It works. “It is the great alternative,” says one reader.
Both next-gen Woodward and the U.S. Ski Team’s speed center call Copper home, which tells you a lot. Copper is quietly one of the better skiable mountains in all of Colorado. “There’s no other resort where you can ski in two hours the vertical and terrain that you can here,” a reader says. The East Village is family headquarters with its easy-riding Super Bee six-pack. There’s no cover charge on the Super Bee, but we’ll institute a two-run minimum when ripping with the kids. A ski resort reveals its bona fides in a variety of ways, but “I named my dog after Copper” is as good as any we’ve heard in a while.
Big news for Copper skiers: The resort is replacing two chairs this season. The American Eagle becomes a chondola, with a mix of six-person high-speed chairs and eight-person gondola cabins that increases lift capacity by 40 percent. The American Flyer up- grades to a high-speed six-pack bubble chairlift—Colorado’s first.
Come For The...
APRES SPOT Endo’s. Great vibe. Next to the Center Village lifts. Good cheap food. Can get crowded, so patience is occasionally needed. Go turf and surf: Adrenaline Hot Wings, then Blackened Fish Tacos.
The free Tucker Mountain Snowcat Rides. The turns in Tucker and Copper Bowl are the real deal and are an easy way for you and the kids to taste true backcountry skiing. Pickup is at the base of the Mountain Chief double.