The Highland Bowl at Aspen Highlands showcases some of the steepest, most extreme “inbound” skiing in Colorado. And those who have experienced it understand its magnetic pull. When the resort received a 13-inch dump of fresh pow overnight in late March, over 50 giddy skiers and boarders were already lined up the next morning at Exhibition lift to snag first tracks in the bowl.
First, there’s the journey. A snowcat at the top of Loge Peak lift drops you at the top of the Temerity glade, home to slotted tree skiing, and the bottom of Highland Bowl, offering access to hundreds of acres of blissfully wide-open terrain. Next, there’s the hike up a narrow, two-foot wide ridge. It will take you about 40 minutes to reach the summit, but the breathtaking views of the neighboring fourteeners, Pyramid Peak and Maroon Bells, make it worthwhile. The snow at the summit (the North-facing “G-zones”) is usually the softest, but you can drop in any time. Quick tip: if you’re not skiing with a pack, stop in the patrol shop at the top of Loge lift. For $8, you can buy a strap to carry your skis on your back, and proceeds benefit Highlands ski patrol. Stash it in your jacket pocket to use next time.