A Guide to Skiing in New Mexico

A Guide to Skiing in New Mexico

New Mexico may not be the first place that comes to your mind when you think about Ski Resorts. But you may be in for a surprise. This southern state is popularly known for its chili-based food, and pristine desert landscape also offers world class ski resorts with terrains for all levels of skiers. A lot of ski resorts in New Mexico are family owned and therefore provide a friendly and homely laid-back experience to visitors.

Best Skiing Resorts For Beginners In New Mexico

Angel Fire Resort

The resort is located just 24 miles east of Taos and is a popular year-round destination in Northern New Mexico. This resort is spread over an area of 560+ acres and has a lot of beginner runs and even offers skiing lessons. You can also do snowboarding and take snowboarding lessons at this resort and enjoy facilities like Night skiing, tubing, lodging, and dining options at this resort. In the summer season, the resort offers zip lining and an 18-hole golf course along with many more facilities.

Popular Ski Resort For Beginners In New Mexico

Parajito Mountain Ski Area

Located in the north of Pajarito, Pajarito Mountain Ski area stands on privately owned land spread over 850 acres. Pajarito Ski Resort is owned and managed by a non-profit organization, The Los Alamos Ski Club (LASC). The resort has over 280 acres of skiable area and stays open from Christmas to early April usually. But in seasons with extra snow, the resort may run from Thanksgiving to late April. There’s also a snowmaking machine at the resort and season passes are available with early bird discounts.

The resort has 1 Terrain Park, and 40 runs that mostly accommodate skiers of beginner and intermediate level. The park has seven lifts in total with one triple chair, one quad chair, and three double chairs. 

The resort organizes many events during the summer season like mountain biking. The giant network of single and double track mountain bike trails surround the mountain. There’s also the option of hiking and horse riding.

Intermediate Skiing Destination In New Mexico

Sandia Peak Ski Resort

Located in the Cibola National Forest and a short drive from Albuquerque, Sandia Peak Ski Resort is a family friendly place and a great place for intermediate skiers. There is something for everyone here. The resort has 39 trails with the majority of them for beginner and intermediate level. There are five lifts out of which four are double, and one is surface. The resort has an impressive vertical drop of 1700 feet.

Tickets are pocket-friendly and costs 55$ all day for adults (21-61), Teens (13-20)$45 all day, Children (13 & UNDER)$40 all day and senior (62-71)$45 all day, Group lessons at $40-$60 and ski rentals at 23$.

There are many facilities available like the Snow Sports School which offers skiing and snowboarding lessons to everyone at attractive rates. There’s a rental shop from where you can get full skiing or snowboarding gear right on the mountain. There is also a café known as the Double Eagle II Café.

Sipapu Ski Resort

Sipapu Ski Resort is located 20 miles southeast of Taos, New Mexico in the Carson National Forest.

A moderately sized ski resort that has the most extended skiing season in New Mexico from November To April. The resort has 41 trails and five lifts and a peak elevation of 2,821 m. Other facilities offered by the resort include two terrain parks, golf, accommodation, restaurants, skiing lessons, and fishing.

Ski Apache Ski Resort

Located on the slopes of Sierra Blanca in southern New Mexico Ski Apache is a famous destination for intermediate skiers. The Mescalero Apache tribe owns and manages the tribe since 1963. What makes this resort unique is the fact that it is the only resort in New Mexico with a gondola lift. The resort has over 750 acres of skiable area and 55 runs with most of the runs designed for intermediate skiers. Other runs include an intermediate run known as the Apache Bowl run on the upper west side of the mountain which is famous for the view it offers from Chairlift 6. The captain is a steep, challenging trail that drops to 475 feet, and the Gondola lift line is a step and small run for advanced skiers, and it runs from the mountain summit to the main lodge. Snowpark run in this resort is known as one of the most robust beginners runs around the globe. The Ski Apache Resort has four triple chairlifts, three quad chairlifts, and one gondola lift.

Advanced Skiing Resort In New Mexico

Taos Ski Valley

Located in a pleasant, isolated valley, Taos Ski Valley and resort is New Mexico’s most prominent resort offering great terrains for advanced skiers. The valley is known for its Kachin Peak which reaches over 12,481 feet above sea level. At Taos, you will get the most varied range of skiing terrains with wide-open groomers, moguls, glades, and bowls that have the lightest powder in all of North America. 51% of the terrain is classified as black, 25% blue, and 24% green. The valley has 110 trails and 13 lifts (4 Quads, 4 Triple, 1 Double, 3 Surface, 1 Pedestrian Gondola) and one Terrain Park. The valley has a vertical drop of an impressive 3,274 feet and receives 300 inches of average snowfall.

No matter your experience in skiing you’re bound to enjoy here and if you want to learn you can avail the facility of the renowned Ernie Blake Snowsports School which is amongst the top ski training schools in the world.

For winters this year, Taos Skiing Valley has increased the learning experience for child skiers and riders with its state-of-the-art Strawberry Hill Beginner Area and Children Center which will open in December.

Lodging facilities can be availed at The Blake which is a slopeside retreat that provides access to slopes along with in-house dining facility and other amenities.

The tickets at Taos Valley are a bit pricey with adult tickets starting at $105, senior and teen tickets at $85, and children at $65.  Lessons cost $75 per person for 2.5 hrs and 375$+ for private lessons. 

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