Tucked away from the chaos of the I-70 corridor, Winter Park Resort is a favorite of locals and tourists alike. With small-town charm and old school character to remind us of ski days past, Winter Park/Mary Jane is a hidden gem. The mountain is celebrating its 75th anniversary this season, so get out there and ski some bumps – Mary Jane is famous for ‘em!
Resort Address: 85 Parsenn Road, Winter Park, CO 80482
Date First Opened: January 28, 1940
Resort Prices for Tickets: Prices vary depending on how many days you ski and which days of the week. On average, weekend lift tickets are as follows: Adult: $103; Youth: $63; Senior: $87. View Winter Park Resort lift tickets.
Acres: 3,081 acres
Vertical Feet: 2,610 feet at Mary Jane
Base Elevation: 9,000 feet at Winter Park
Number of Trails: 143 named trails (8% beginner, 18% intermediate, 19.1% advanced, 51.5% expert, 3.4% expert only)
Number of Lifts: 25 lifts – (2) high speed six-passenger lifts, (7) high speed express quads, (4) triples, (6) doubles, (3) surface lifts, (1) platter, (1) rope tow, and (1) Village Cabriolet
Terrain Park? Pipe? Six terrain parks of varying levels, one SuperPipe
Average Snow: Averages 320” per year
Snow Making: Yes, on 27 trails or 313 acres
What’s New: Winter Park added the new Lunch Rock restaurant on top of the Mary Jane territory. It is the largest building construction in 20 years with a 150-person heated deck, 250-person indoor restaurant, bar and a hydration station. At 11,200 feet in elevation, Lunch Rock provides ample views of the incredible scenery.
Ski School Offerings: The Winter Park Resort’s Kids Lessons are offered for a variety of ages and abilities. “Just Because I’m Three” lessons are available for children of three-years-old while full-day ski and snowboard lessons are offered for kids ages four or older. Privates, semi-privates, and week-long lessons are available. Lessons are also available for adults.
Other Activities: Willie’s Adventure Club is an evening program available for kids when parents need a night off. Dinner is included and activities frequently include games, tubing, ice skating and movies. Snowshoeing and scenic cat tours are also available on the mountain.
Year Round Offerings? Visiting in the summer? Visit the Trestle Bike Park to work on your mountain biking skills! With 40 miles of trails to choose from, you’re sure to find something that suits you.
Average On-Mountain Lunch Price: $10-15
Best Place to Park: Park in the Vintage Lot and you’ll be able to ride the Village Cabriolet to the base. Or, if you’re wanting to ski on the Mary Jane side of the mountain, simply park in the lot at the base of the lifts and walk to your first chair.
Resort Trivia/Random Facts: Mary Jane acquired its name from a local “lady of the evening” in the late 1800s. She lived on the parcel of land at the base of Mary Jane, although it is unknown whether she purchased the land with her earnings or if it was gifted to her by a grateful client. The numerous mogul runs at Mary Jane have earned the moniker “No Pain, No Jane.”
First Chair/Run You Should Ski: Cranmer and Larry Sale are always good runs to warm up the legs.
What Time To Be First Tracks on a Pow Day: Are you kidding? Be there when lifts start turning if you want to catch the fresh stuff.
Best Powder Stashes: The Eagle Wind lift tens to hold powder longer than other areas on the mountain since it is located on the opposite side from the majority of the expert terrain.
Best Tree Runs: The Panoramic Express lift offers up some new gladed terrain that’s worth investigating—check out the trees in this area for solid turns. If you prefer trees sans moguls, zip through the glades off the Eagle Wind lift.
Secret Hike-To Spots: It may not be a secret, but the sweat equity keeps all but the determined away. Hike the mile from the top of Panoramic Express until you reach the Cirque’s headwall and chutes. It’s expert-only terrain but it’s quite the playground. Pro tip: skiers and riders tend to hike to the farthest chutes, thinking they will find the secret stashes. Instead, drop in near the beginning and outsmart all of those avid trekkers.
Around The Resort:
Most Convenient Airports: It’s not necessarily close, but Denver International Airport is your best bet. Winter Park is 85 miles from the airport.
Best Place for Apres: The Derailer Bar at West Portal is a fun place to hang out with friends and grab a beer. Word on the street is that there is a new Coors Light Music Series!
Best Nightlife: While Winter Park isn’t quite the party mecca as nearby resorts, there is still some fun nightlife to be had. Check out Ullr’s Tavern, a local spot that has live music and pool tables.
Best Place to Eat: If you like tacos, definitely check out Pepe Osaka’s Fish Tacos. Not only do they have some tasty infused vodka, but their secret menu has some yummy options. Tip: try the Thai chicken tacos.
Best Value Play for Food and Drinks: Deno’s Mountain Bistro has a great happy hour menu. There is a range of intriguing small plates available—house made burrata, greek lamb sliders, and gorgonzola fondue—and the drink special are awesome too. Deno’s offers double tall wells for $3.50, domestics for $2.75 and $2 off wine by the glass and cocktails.
Most Interesting Place to Eat: Why not catch the enclosed gondola and enjoy your dinner two miles up? The Lodge at Sunspot features Colorado-proud products and offers dinner on Friday and Saturday nights. Prices include the gondola ride in both directions.
Best Place to Recover: It may not be next door, but Hot Sulphur Springs is totally worth the trek. Located 30 minutes from the town of Winter Park, Hot Sulphur Springs has 21 pools in temps ranging from 95 degrees to 112 degrees Fahrenheit.
Who Are You? Heather Balogh, a Denver-based freelance writer who specializes in adventure travel and outdoor activities.
Where Do You Come From? I’m a Colorado native, born and raised.
Why Do You Know The Resort So Well? I grew up skiing at Winter Park with my mom. I also spent a few seasons teaching adaptive skiing at NSCD, the adaptive program based at Winter Park.