Aspen Highlands#5 in Best Things To Do in Aspen
Aspen Highlands has been the preferred ski area among Aspen residents for more than 50 years. If you're looking for a challenge, this is the ski area for you: more than half of the trails here were carved with advanced and expert skiers in mind, with routes like Golden Horn, Highland Bowl and Olympic Bowl offering stomach-dropping descents.
Skiers love the local feel of this mountain and say it's a bonus that it's rarely crowded. Travelers note the majority of terrain is definitely geared toward advanced skiers who know how to handle steep pitches and deep powder. When it comes to mealtime, previous visitors strongly recommend dining at Cloud Nine Alpine Bistro, which offers breathtaking views of the Maroon Bells.
Aspen Highlands is located about 3 miles southwest of Aspen and welcomes skiers and snowboarders from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. every day between mid-December and mid-April. Lift passes vary in price and are valid at all four Aspen ski areas. If you're visiting during the winter holidays, consider purchasing lift passes in advance and getting an early start to beat the crowds. You can also save money by purchasing passes online at the Aspen-Snowmass website.
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#1 Maroon Bells
Rising more than 14,000 feet, these twin peaks are a favorite spot for hikers and wildlife-watchers, boasting beautiful vistas and breathtaking scenery. In fact, Maroon Bells' jagged peaks and multicolored slopes make it one of the most photographed sites in North America. The surrounding area features numerous trails and campsites, granting you a variety of viewing points from which you can capture the perfect shot.
Whether you choose to head toward the summit or to lazily stroll around the beaver-laden Maroon Lake, this is sure to be one of the highlights of your Aspen trip. Recent travelers praise the uninterrupted beauty of this area, calling the Maroon Bells "stunning," "awe-inspiring" and "one of the loveliest places on earth." Some say it's the perfect place for a day of hiking and a picnic lunch. Past hikers recommended getting to the mountains early as the area can get crowded.
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