Snowmass#3 in Best Things To Do in Aspen
Aspen's largest and most popular ski area is the ultimate destination for winter sports enthusiasts. Comprising 3,332 acres of skiiable terrain, this massive complex features 150 miles of trails, multiple lifts and a charming village with a variety of shops and restaurants. Roughly half of the trails here are designed for intermediate-level skiers, but more advanced powder hounds will find plenty of challenging stretches of snow to try. Snowboarders should also note that Snowmass has one of the best snowboarding schools in the United States.
Previous visitors raved about the ski area and its terrain variety, noting that there are runs for all types of skiers and that the lift lines and trails were not terribly crowded. But when it comes to shopping and dining options, some travelers were disappointed by Snowmass Village.
Snowmass (located about 8 miles west of Aspen) welcomes visitors to its slopes every day between late November and late April. Lifts open at 8:30 a.m. and generally stay open until 3:30 p.m., weather permitting. It's always a good idea to get an early start to avoid the crowds, especially if you're visiting over the winter holidays. Lift tickets vary in price, depending on the season, and they can be used at any of Aspen's ski locales (a free shuttle bus provides transportation between all four areas). You can also save money by purchasing lift passes in advance 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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