Ski resorts in USA
Today's Ski Cooper serves the public, but it started in 1942 as a training ground for US soldiers in the 10th Mountain Division during the Second World War. The facility owners are now Lake County, Colorado, and it is managed by 501(c)4 non-profit. It is a budget-friendly destination with lots of green-rated terrains, making it a popular family destination.

Those looking to drive into the region can use Interstate 70 that runs through the Rocky Mountains. Motorists will drive US Route 24 the rest of the way, with the venue located north of the city of Leadville. Most guests arriving by air will use Denver International Airport and secure ground transportation up the I-70 corridor.

Winter Fun with a View

Sitting on Tennessee Pass, Ski Cooper offers visitors a view of some of the state's tallest mountain peaks that provide an incredible backdrop to ski and ride. The base elevation here rests at 10,500 feet, and the top height is at 11,700 feet. Its 1,200-foot vertical drop creates potentials on the trail system that will get guests' adrenaline running.

Situated at this higher alpine elevation means that skiers and snowboarders can experience rapid changes in temperature and wind, so it is best to dress for the worst and go from there. The average annual snowfall at Ski Cooper is 260 inches, which is respectable but not the deepest in the state. Nature's bounty sticks around, though, so there is no real need for snowmaking equipment. Plenty of chances for cutting fresh tracks is possible, with the December through February window offering the best opportunities for dumps on the slopes.

The Ski Cooper venue has basic amenities covered with its base lodge. Guests can enjoy store shopping for essentials on the slope, rentals, repairs, drinks, food, and ski-in lodging in yurts on Tennessee Pass. Leadville, an old mining town that is the nation's highest city (10,142 feet), also offers plenty to explore once the skis are off.

Everybody Will Find Something Here

The Cooper ski area offers CAT skiing along Chicago Ridge, where plenty of powder awaits in bowls and among the trees. Guests can use the Tennessee Pass Nordic Center as a hub for their cross-country exploration. Also, the winter resort maintains an Uphill policy for those looking to explore outside the ski area's boundaries.

What brings lots of casual skiers and families to Ski Cooper is the 480 acres of groomed terrain. There are over 60 trails to explore, with the ratings distributed evenly compared to other mountains in the region. Green ratings on 31-percent of the runs give new snow hounds plenty to do, and 35-percent of the terrain has ratings of blue once they gain some experience. The remaining trails are black diamond or double diamond ratings for those with advanced skills and expert ski bums to carve.

Ski Cooper offers plenty of learning options for adults and children, using skis or snowboards. There are also programs for adaptive skiing and special needs, making the resort a place anyone can learn to rip or shred. Five lifts move guests around Ski Cooper, including three magic carpets.

Cooper Snow forecast

  • Friday
    0.04 in rain
    Partly cloudy
    6 mph
  • Saturday
    0.08 in rain
    Partly cloudy
    4 mph
  • Sunday
    0 ft
    Partly cloudy
    5 mph

Facts about Cooper

Number of slopes:59
Easiest Green slopes:10
Intermediate Blue slopes:16
Advanced Black slopes:18
Expert Only Double black diamond slopes:15

Lifts (Total: 5)
Chair lifts:2
Platter lift:3
Lift capacity:  3300 persons/hour

Vertical drop
Cooper Vertical drop
Highest Point: 11699 ft
Vertical drop: 1201 ft
Base Point: 10499 ft

Country: USA
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Trail map

Trail map Cooper

Nearby ski resorts

Copper Mountain13 miles
Breckenridge14.9 miles
Vail19.3 miles
Beaver Creek20.5 miles
Keystone25.5 miles
Aspen Mountain30.4 miles
Arapahoe Basin Ski Area30.4 miles
Loveland31.1 miles

Airports near Cooper

Eagle County Regional Airport
Driving time: 1 hour, 8 minutes (53 miles)
Distance: 38 miles
Aspen Airport
Driving time: 2 hours, 16 minutes (116 miles)
Distance: 32 miles
Denver International Airport
Driving time: 2 hours, 22 minutes (132 miles)
Distance: 93 miles