How To Ski Snowmass On A Powder Day

Snowmass on a Powder Day

Many skiers are familiar with Snowmass’ perfectly pitched intermediate groomers; fewer know the resort’s nooks and crannies that harbor fresh snow days after a storm. Blame its behemoth size. With 4,406 vertical feet, 3,332 acres of terrain, 96 runs and 20 chairlifts, Snowmass takes time to explore.

But who has time on a powder day? Trust local professional skier Chris Davenport’s advice and follow this advanced skier’s game plan on a powder day.

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Snowmass on a Powder Day Big Burn

Snowmass on a Powder Day Big Burn

Head up Big Burn lift and take a lap or two in Powerline Trees (pictured here). These low-angle pine glades are the perfect powder warm-up to wake the legs and feel some fresh snow in your face.

Next ...

Take the Sheer Bliss quad and drop into Gowdy’s or KT Gully. These short, steep couloirs catch wind-deposited powder. KT is wider, less steep and usually opens first.

Snowmass on a Powder Day Sheer Bliss
Then ...

Ride Alpine Springs chair to get in position to ski the Hanging Valley Wall. As you approach the top, look left to see if the Wall is open yet. If not, ski a lap or two in Reidar’s Trees. When the rope drops, head out to the Wall and drop down Roberto’s Gully to Strawberry Patch, Wall 1 or Wall 2. You’re sure to want another lap, but there are other zones to hit…
Snowmass on a Powder Day Hanging Valley Wall

And then ...

Snowmass on a Powder Day Burnt Mountain

Snowmass on a Powder Day Burnt Mountain

Ride Elk Camp chair to the summit and take in the view of the 14,000-foot peaks of the Maroon Bells. Hike five minutes to the new Burnt Mountain zone (pictured above), 206 acres of formerly out-of-bounds terrain. Follow the trail called “Split Tree” for the best powder stashes and ski 3,000 vertical feet down to Two Creeks.

Finally ...
Ride Two Creeks to Elk Camp and do another lap on Burnt Mountain, following A-Line trail.
Hungry for more? Campground, the vintage double lift far skier’s left, offers lift-accessible steeps like Powderhorn that stay fresh for days. It’s also a good bet when the winds are whipping or the Wall isn’t open yet.

About Chris Davenport

Chris Davenport
Local athlete and world-champion skier Chris Davenport is regarded as one of the most accomplished big-mountain skiers in the world. He has skied on Mount Everest, been the first to ascend several peaks around the world, and he is the first person to ever climb and ski down all 54 of Colorado's 14,000-foot peaks in a single year. He lives in Aspen.

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