Copper Mountain and Winter park are two of the most famous Ski resorts in Colorado, US. If you are wondering about the key differences and reasons to choose one resort over the other, this post is for you.
In this post, I’ll compare the snow fall and quality, terrain, weather, costs, lifts, accommodation, culture, weather, restaurants and a whole lot more! Plus, I’ll give you some advice when traveling to both Winter Park and Copper Mountain.
You can plan ahead an ideal tour with the help of our comprehensive guide! Without further ado let’s get started.
Copper Mountain Vs Winter Park
The main difference between Winter Park and Copper Mountain is that Winter Park is a larger resort with more skiable terrain and better tree and bowl skiing, while Copper Mountain is known for its groomed black and blue runs and naturally divided terrain.
Both resorts have great terrain for skiers and snowboarders of all ability levels, but Winter park has a slightly lower elevation, and it typically gets more snow and has a longer ski season.
Copper Mountain has a more vibrant nightlife, with a ton of bars and restaurants on the mountain, while Winter Park has a more laid-back atmosphere.
Let’s take a look at these in more detail. Also check out our guide on skiing at grand targhee vs jackson hole.
Winter park is the fourth-largest ski resort in Colorado, surrounded by the Arapaho National forest and three wilderness areas. The whole park is spread across 765,000 acres and it is only 67 miles away from Denver. You would love to know that it has a massive skiable area of nearly 3100 acres.
Copper mountain is 75 miles west from Denver, with over 2,500 acres of high mountains and beautiful terrain. In the summer Copper is a famous place for hikers and mountain bikers, while the winter is taken over by skiers from all over the world. It ranks 6th in Colorado’s terrain parks with over 2500 acres of skiable area.
Winter Park gets the most snowfall and has better quality snow than Copper mountain. Winter Park gets an average of 291” annual snowfall while Copper mountain gets only 224” snow annually.
Plus, winter park is also known as the longest continually operated ski resort in Colorado.
Also read our guide on the best ski resorts in California for beginners.
Copper mountain has the best terrain and offers a variety of runs in each part of the area including family friendly beginner terrain and more challenging trails. It has a total of 150 runs with 46% of them being beginner friendly and intermediate while the rest is for advanced skiers.
Winter Park has 170 runs, suitable for all levels of skiers from beginners to advanced skiers. They have a good rail section going through the trails too and have the best steeps. Winter Park also has a super fun snow tube activity with three lanes. The resort is mostly known for beginner friendly trails.
Read everything you need to know about ski slope colors here.
Copper Mountain has the best ski lifts. Copper has 24 lifts with 1 gondola, 14 chairlifts and 9 surface lifts. But sometimes you may have to spend 20-30 minutes walking from the car park to the lifts.
Winter Park also offers 20 lifts including a gondola. They are using iPads to operate the lifts, which is kind of cool.
Lodging in Winter Park is typically less expensive than Copper Mountain but it will be cheaper if you stay in Frisco or Dillon instead of at Copper.
Anyways, each area has its own upscale lodging options with the best amenities, such as hot bath tubs. It all depends on your overall needs since you would not mind spending a little bit extra on the hotel if a particular place satisfies all your other needs.
In Winter Park, most hotel prices range from intermediate to luxurious. Hotels are available for all price ranges. Among the hotels with the best ratings are:
- Winter Park Mountain Lodge
- Winter Park Resort
- Zephyr Mountain Lodge
The following hotels near Copper Mountain have the best ratings in the area.
- Copper Mountain Resort
- Element 29 Hotel
- The Lodge at Copper Mountain
Food and Drinks
Winter Park is home to many fancy restaurants and cafes. Don’t miss visiting the following top-rated eateries in Winter Park if you are visiting this park:
- Bosphorous Turkish Cuisine
- The Cheesecake Factory
- Hillstone Restaurant
Copper Mountain is well known for its delectable cuisine. You can find food served in practically all restaurants with various tastes. Additionally, the local cuisine there is just as tasty. Check out the following restaurants in Copper Mountain for the best experience:
- El Zacatecano Mexican Restaurant
- JJ’s Rocky Mountain Tavern
- Sawmill Pizza & Taphouse
Winter Park is probably the easiest to reach and the drive is better. And they even have free buses there. But it would be really good if you drive or rent a car because you can keep the luggage there when you go skiing.
Culture And Mountain Review
One of the most picturesque cities in the country, Winter Park is also one of the most culturally diverse. The culture highly values all of its traditional scales. You will be astounded by their gastronomic pleasures and carefree lifestyle.
On the other hand, Copper Mountain is one of the best resorts to experience mountain culture, which is difficult to find in other areas of the world. The extraordinarily vibrant and blooming music and arts can be really amazing.
Do We Have A Winner?
It is not easy to state a clear winner between Copper Mountain vs Winter Park . Both resorts have good snow, a range of trails and activities, also a wide range of options for lodging and food. You can’t go wrong with either resort.
If you are a beginner or planning a family trip, Copper mountain would be the ideal place. But if you are an experienced skier and want to get a more thrilling experience, Winter Park will not fail you.
Anyway, we recommend you allocate at least 3-4 days to get the complete experience and your trip to these snowy paradises will be worthwhile. Oh and make sure you get ski insurance with helicopter rescue just in case!
IMHO, I would choose Copper Mountain. It has good terrain, grooms more, lots of pooling and offers both beginner and expert runs. Plus, it’s cheaper, has a great lift system and sometimes is less crowded.
Even though Winter Park is no brainer and has better and more snow, Copper Mountain is still better than a lot of other resorts.