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Colorado Ski School: Learn to Ski & Snowboard in Colorado

Colorado ski areas offer acclaimed ski-school learning programs that are the perfect springboard to a lifelong love affair with the slopes. Whether you’ve tried skiing or snowboarding a few times or you want to make that inaugural Colorado mountain trip, taking a professional lesson will help you get the basics down and improve your technique more quickly.

Kids ride the ski lift at Vail Mountain on a Colorado ski vacation
Kids ride the ski lift at Vail Mountain on a Colorado ski vacation

Designed for kids and adults of every age and learning stage, nearly every Colorado ski resort has a family-friendly learning program to get you started. Below are a few examples of the unique programs offered. Also, mark your calendars: January is Learn to Ski & Snowboard Month, when many resorts offer great deals on lessons for beginners!

Insider tip: Parking at popular ski resorts can fill up fast, especially on a powder day. Before you go, research the parking situation and seek out guidance on the best vehicle lots, shuttles, free busses and more.

Please note: Some programs may not be available due to COVID-19 during the 2020–21 season, so please check with program managers directly for information and schedules. 

ARAPAHOE BASIN

Front Range favorite A-Basin offers a three-pack of private lessons that can accommodate up to four skiers or snowboarders at a time. While it's known for expert terrain, the ski area has two mellow learning areas and scenic beginner terrain — so the whole family can enjoy the gorgeous views from the slopes.

ASPEN/SNOWMASS/ASPEN HIGHLANDS/BUTTERMILK

The four Aspen/Snowmass mountains have a variety of specialized ski-school programs, including lessons for preschool-age kids, teens, adults and seniors. The Teen Park & Pipe Camp uses the site of ESPN's Winter X Games to perfect mountain moves, and the Women's Edge skiers' program is a four-day, women-specific camp that has been creating friendships for more than 25 years. Adaptive ski and snowboard info >>

BEAVER CREEK RESORT

For those looking for something a little different, Beaver Creek's Nordic lessons take students into the White River National Forest backcountry to learn snowshoeing, cross-country or telemark skiing. Adaptive ski and snowboard info >>

BRECKENRIDGE SKI RESORT

Breck offers a mix of group and private courses, for adults and children no matter their ability level, giving its participants plenty of one-on-one time with the instructor. Adaptive ski and snowboard info >>

COPPER MOUNTAIN

Woodward at Copper offers a year-round indoor ski and snowboard camp with foam pits, trampolines, simulated snow and more to allow riders to test their skills before launching outdoors. Adaptive ski and snowboard info >>

CRESTED BUTTE MOUNTAIN RESORT

CB Steep Guides' knowledgeable pros lead confident skiers and snowboarders — who want to take their skills to the extreme — down Crested Butte’s well-known untamed terrain. Adaptive ski and snowboard info >>

PURGATORY (FORMERLY DURANGO MOUNTAIN RESORT)

Purgatory has embraced a recent snow-sports trend: the snow bike (basically a bike with skis instead of wheels). Everyone who rents a snow bike at the resort is required to take a certification course before they head down the mountain on one of the easiest-to-learn modes of snow transport. Adaptive ski and snowboard info >>

KEYSTONE RESORT

Camp Keystone is more than just a ski school for your kids. Sure, they'll learn to ski and snowboard, but they'll also participate in lots of other winter activities, including kids' nights out, themed days and other snowy fun. Adaptive ski and snowboard info >>

LOVELAND SKI AREA

Loveland Explorers is a six-week program held in conjunction with the Loveland Racing Team, where coaches work with intermediate and advanced skiers and snowboarders ages 7 to 14 to develop skills throughout the season.

MONARCH MOUNTAIN

On a handful of Wednesday afternoons, Monarch offers ski and snowboard clinics just for women that take skills to the next level in a fun, non-competitive environment.

POWDERHORN

Powderhorn offers lessons for those interested in learning a variety of terrains, including telemark, moguls, powder and more. Adaptive ski and snowboard info >>

SKI COOPER

For those who might not have hit the slopes in a while, Ski Cooper's technique improvement program gives skiers the choice of what they want to improve on and helps take you to the next level with with today's techniques.

SKI GRANBY RANCH

Instructors at Ski Granby Ranch's ski and ride school utilize the Haral Harb teaching method, which utilizes specific body movements and shaped skis to get students on the slopes and confident with the fundamentals.

STEAMBOAT

Steamboat’s three-day Billy Kidd Race Camps match intermediate to advanced skiers with trainers that are hand-selected by Olympic medalist Billy Kidd. Video replay gives immediate analysis, and music and commentary are dubbed in later for a take-home DVD. Adpative ski and snowboard info >>

SUNLIGHT MOUNTAIN

Sunlight's Williams Peak Backcountry Clinics take alpine and telemark skiers and snowboarders on a half-day tour of Williams Peak, home to steep ridges and broad powder bowls, where some of the Western Slope's most powder is known to fall. 

TELLURIDE SKI RESORT

Telluride also has a backcountry program, which takes adventurers and private instructors to the resort's hike-to terrain in search of pristine powder and untouched chutes. Adaptive ski and snowboard info >>

VAIL

Vail's Adventure Sessions are great for those who want to see the mountain like a local, including a guide that will take you places you haven't found before and help you make the most of your ski day. Adaptive ski and snowboard info >>

WINTER PARK RESORT

Winter Park has also embraced the ski-bike phenomenon in a unique way. When the sun goes down and following some instruction, the resort's guides lead ski bikers with head lamps down the mountain in the dark of night. Adaptive ski and snowboard info >>

WANT MORE?

Learn more about Colorado's 28 ski resorts, find the best ski resorts for families in the state, discover off-slope winter activities for kids or night activities at Colorado ski resorts.