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Ahh Loveland—where the lifts are slow, the parking is still free, and skiing is as it was intended to be. As one of the last independently owned ski areas in Colorado—one without a resort-like base area and highfalutin’ amenities—Loveland Ski Area has flown under the national radar for decades. But those who know, know: “Best kind of skiing experience—no extraneous frills, just really good, uncrowded skiing,” applauds one reader. This despite being just over an hour-drive from Denver (No. 3 in Travel Ease). But Loveland’s real claim to fame is its affordability (No. 1) and local flavor (No. 7). Walk into Loveland’s base lodge and you’ll get the gist of the place: Old-timers wearing 40-year-old North Face jackets huddle in groups around the cafeteria-style tables and klatch about which runs are skiing well; dads use the communal microwave to heat up oatmeal brought from home for the kiddos; and never-evers up from the big city for the day clonk around in their jeans and rental boots. “Love the vibe of this place … It’s not the biggest or fanciest, but it’s also not the snobbiest or most expensive,” one reader declares. Another sums up what makes Loveland so special with one word: “Cares.” – Jenny Wiegand
Loveland’s 2021 Reader Resort Guide Rank: #30 in the West
- What’s New for 2021: Loveland’s popular Ridge Cat won’t be operating this winter, but on the upside, the ski area guarantees 130 days of operation this season or pass holders get a pro-rated deal on a 2021-’22 season pass.
- Best Value: Loveland’s 4-Paks are the hottest deal in town. Purchase this unrestricted, transferable ticket bundle in advance and ski for $42.25 per day. Be sure to purchase them by Nov. 22 (not sold at ticket windows).
See who’s next – 2021 Reader Resort Guide #29: Solitude Mountain Resort, Utah
2019 ‘Resorts of the Year’ Profile of Loveland Ski Area
The soulful gem of Colorado’s Front Range steps it up with over $5 million
in upgrades for 2019, including the resort’s first high-speed quad. By speeding up ride time from eight minutes to a zippy three, Loveland will be able to disperse skiers higher on the mountain more quickly and get you from I-70 to the hill in no time.
The Ridge remains the go-to for blown-in powder that stays fresh for days after a storm, but this season skiers can expect expanded snowcat skiing in Dry Gulch on Loveland’s northern boundaries, too. Season passholders have access to 32 partner resorts—Powder Alliance members and more—making Loveland a legit escape from the Epic and Ikon madness that surrounds it.
What’s New for 2019
Loveland’s first high-speed quad, Chet’s Dream, will replace Chair 1, a fixed-grip triple, increasing capacity and reducing ride time by five minutes.