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21996 Highway 6 Keystone, 80435 us 970-427-8308 website:
An overlooked mountain. Reasonably priced. Great for families.

Reviewed by

Nov 06, 2008

avg. snowfall

230 in

number of runs


base elevation


peak elevation


vertical drop


skiable acres


Keystone is a resort without a strong identity, but it’s not a resort without a huge fan base. Go figure. In recent seasons, Keystone has regularly tallied more than one million visits, so a whole lot of skiers do find their way to this “family favorite” resort that chronically gets eclipsed in name recognition by its sexier sisters: Vail, Beaver Creek and neighboring Breckenridge. A reader concedes, but doesn’t complain, that Keystone is “often overlooked,” noting, as do others, that “it’s larger than I expected.” That’s to be expected, as this is a hill that sneaks up on you the first time you ski its fully legit, if not fully radical 3,148 acres. Many readers commend Keystone as “a great place to learn to ski,” which leads to other complaints of “too many beginner skiers.” Here’s a solution: Head to the far reaches of the mountain, as “The Outback provides great treeskiing without crowds.” Keystone’s reputation as “a family resort” is fueled by being “small enough to have a home-town feel, but large enough not to get bored.” There’s no boredom to be found at its famed terrain park (ranked No. 4), which includes beginner to pro-level features. “A-51 is sick!!!” is a theme often repeated, as is the use of multiple exclamation points by park-praisers. Keystone continues to effectively, if also quietly, build upon its friendly vibe and affordable comforts, while also offering two of the finest restaurants within sight of a ski slope: The Alpenglow Stube and the Ski Tip Lodge. Go figure, again. —G.D.

What’s New: Upgrades to Ripperoo’s Forest, the kid’s learning area; Keystone Lodge room renovations.

Mandatory Run: Ride, don’t hike, into the Outback Bowls in a snowcat for $5.

Don’t Miss: Families should check out the snow fort atop Dercum Mountain.

GO: Where to stay

  • River Run Condominiums

    For someone who wants to be in the middle of the action, these condominiums have Starbucks, dining, nightlife, and galleries right outside the front door.

  • The Timbers

    Right on the slopes of River Run Village, the Timbers are exclusive condominiums with private ski in/ski out access.

  • Keystone Lodge and Spa

    You’ll get more for your buck at the Keystone Lodge and Spa.

Apres: Your guide to eats & drinks

  • Kickapoo Tavern

    One of the closest places to the Gondola to grab a beer and a meal.

  • Der Fondue Chessel

    It’s a fondue lover’s dream in Keystone.

  • The Ski Tip Lodge

    Located in Keystone, The Ski Tip Lodge is perfect for a date or a romantic evening in the mountains.

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