ABOUT CAT SKIING IN COLORADO WEST
Located in Lake County, in Western Colorado, Leadville is the site of some of the most adventurous cat skiing opportunities in the state. It has a population of 2,700 and an elevation of 10,152 feet. It has the highest elevation of any incorporated town in the U.S.
Beginning as early as October and continuing as late as April, Leadville can get more than 148 inches of snow each year while other parts of the region enjoy up to 260 inches. The snowiest parts of the year can receive close to 20 inches of snow each month. All of this powder snow makes Leadville a draw for tourists who want to enjoy the thrill and excitement of cat skiing.
Cat skiing tours in this town are professionally guided, taking place over 2,000 acres of terrain located in the White River and San Isabel National Forests. The terrain is marked with open bowls, glades, and timber, offering breathtaking scenery of the Continental Divide, and dozens of the state’s highest peaks. The highest peak is 12,850 feet while slopes range from 3,000 to 10,000 feet in length, and have vertical drops of up to 2,000 feet in some areas.
|Region Name||Colorado West|
|Closest Resort||Grand West Village Resort|
|Optional Resort||The Abby|
|Optional Resort||Mountain Peaks Inn|
|Acres (sq. miles)||2,600|
|Skill Level||Strong Advanced - Expert|
|Annual Snowfall (inches)||260|
|Mountain Range||Sewatch Range/Rocky|
|Runs per Day||8-12|
|Apprx. Vertical Feet per Run||2,000|
|Apprx. Vertical Feet per Day||16,000|
|Apprx. Cost per Day per Person||$399|
|Apprx. Cost per Day per Cat||$3,999|
ADDITIONAL DETAILS ABOUT CAT SKIING IN COLORADO WEST
The snowcat tours are made possible by two Bombadier snowcats, both of which can seat up to 12 passengers in their plush and heated cabins. Two experienced guides go with each cat skiing party to the backcountry. The guides are certified EMTs and trained in snow safety. They are extensively familiar with the layout of the terrain and know how to lead tours in the best snow possible. Their goal, aside from keeping skiers safe, is to provide a unique and thrilling experience for each cat skiing party.
Breakfast is early, beginning at 7:30 in the morning while skiers are loading up at 8:30am for the mountains. A hot lunch is served in a heated backcountry yurt, and will resume skiing until 4:00pm. Skiers can expect to average between eight and 12 runs per day.
These guided tours are reserved solely for advanced and expert cat skiers. Intermediate skiers are advised to avoid the tours until they become more advanced in cat skiing. A minimum of five skiers is required to reserve a guided tour. Reservations should be made in advance to guarantee seating in the snowcats.
Getting to and from Leadville can be done by driving on U.S. Highway 24, which runs east and west through town. State highway 91 also connects to Interstate 70 and is the only way to reach the town from Denver. Tourists can fly by major airline into Denver International Airport and rent a car to drive this route to reach the cat ski resort.
A tourist rail service is made available courtesy of Leadville, Colorado & Southern Railroad. The area is also served by the Lake County Airport. However, no scheduled commercial flights come in and out of the airport. It serves only charter and private aircraft. The nearest commercial airports, Eagle County Airport and Aspen-Pitkin County Airport, are both 62 miles away.
FULL DAY (8:30AM – 4PM)
Includes breakfast and a lunch.$399
PRIVATE SNOWCAT (Holds 12 people)
Includes breakfast and a lunch.$3,999
HOW TO GET TO COLORADO WEST
|Airport Name||Airport Code||Miles to Region|
|Eagle County Regional Airport||EGE||62 mi|
|Aspen Pitkin County Airport||ASE||62 mi|
|Los Angeles International Airport||Los Angeles||CA||LAX||903||4h 7m||1|
|O'Hare International Airport||Chicago||IL||ORD||1125||4h 16m||1|
|John F. Kennedy International Airport||New York||NY||JFK||1925||10h 18m||2|
|San Francisco International Airport||San Francisco||CA||SFO||1140||4H 13M||1|
|Seattle–Tacoma International Airport||Seattle/Tacoma||WA||SEA||1024||4H 32M||1|
|Newark Liberty International Airport||New York/Newark/New Jersey||NJ||EWR||1901||6h 17m||1|
|Logan International Airport||Boston||MA||BOS||2099||6h 14m||1|
|Minneapolis–Saint Paul International Airport||Minneapolis/St. Paul||MN||MSP||1039||5h 18m||1|
|Philadelphia International Airport||Philadelphia||PA||PHL||1871||5h 53m||1|
|LaGuardia Airport||New York||NY||LGA||1915||6h 19m||1|
|Washington Dulles International Airport||Washington, D.C.||VA||IAD||1790||5h 47m||1|
|San Diego International Airport||San Diego||CA||SAN||849||4h 12m||1|
|Midway International Airport||Chicago||IL||MDW||1132||9h 44m||2|
|Portland International Airport||Portland||OR||PDX||1156||4h 17m||1|
Grand Targhee Resort
3300 Ski Hill Rd
Alta, WY 83414