Aspen Ski Resort Jobs
Ski Areas: Ajax (Aspen Mountain),
Snowmass Ski Area
- Population: Aspen, approximately 6,000; Snowmass 2,000
- Area Information:
- Local Newspapers:
- Annual Snowfall: 200-300″
- Ski Season: Mid-November-mid-April
- Lift Ticket Prices
Lear jets and luxury condos aside, Aspen is still a Victorian mountain town, and it has some of the finest skiing in North America.
The Aspen area, 200 miles southwest of Denver in the heart of the White River National Forest, consists of four mountains: Aspen Mountain (or Ajax), Buttermilk Mountain, Aspen Highlands, and Snowmass Ski Area.
At Snowmass Village hundreds of condos cover the base of the mountain and create a charming village center. Two hundred miles from Denver, in the shadow of Aspen (just twelve short miles away), Snowmass has become known as the “family mountain” area. An overwhelming 95 percent of the lodging in Snowmass Village is ski-in/ski-out. The entire ski area is run by the Aspen Skiing Company, so the activities and events offered in Aspen are also available to guests at Snowmass Village.
Aspen Mountain offers the most difficult terrain of Aspen’s four areas and has a breathtaking view of the town. Locals prefer Aspen Highlands with its 3,635-vertical-foot drop. Beginners need not fear, they have Buttermilk all to themselves. The gentle, well-maintained trails are known as the best first-time skiing in Colorado. Snowboarding is allowed at Aspen Highlands and Buttermilk, and Ajax. The Aspen area also takes pride in the fact that it has one of the most extensive free Nordic trail systems in America for cross-country lovers.
Snowmass offers 2,500 acres of skiable terrain, sixteen lifts, and over fifty-five miles of trails. The terrain is varied, but for the most part, Snowmass is the “promised land” for cruisers, as the majority of runs (69 percent) are for intermediates. The cross-country trails are extensive and include the Owl Creek Trail, which is considered to be one of the most beautiful in the Rocky Mountains. For more information on skiing, call the Aspen Skiing Company at (970) 925-1220 or (800) 525-6200.
Aspen goes above and beyond in the category of non-ski activities. There are sleigh rides and snowshoe tours throughout the winter. For five days in January the town is host to the Winterskol Carnival, also known as the Festival of Snow, which includes a parade, contests, dances, pancake breakfasts, recreational ski racing, concerts, fireworks, and a torchlit ski procession. Call (970) 925-1940 for more information. Snowmobiles can be rented at reasonable rates at the T-Lazy 7 Ranch, (303) 925-4614, for tours past crystallized waterfalls and spectacular vistas.
Snowmass offers the chance to fly down snowy trails behind a dog racing team. There are several hundred Malamutes, Eskimos, and Siberian Huskies housed in kennels at Krabloonik, (970) 923-3953. Snowmass also celebrates Mardi Gras in February, complete with skiers in costume and the Mardi Gras Ball.
Summer provides the opportunity to golf, play tennis, raft the Colorado and Arkansas Rivers, tour the backcountry by jeep, fish, hike, and ride horses. In late June the Snowmass Balloon Festival, including racing and other competitive high-altitude balloon events, is held. An ever-increasing number of spectators enjoys both the amazing spectacle and the champagne breakfast prior to the first launch. For more information call (970) 923-2000. The Aspen Music Festival held June 22-August 20, (970) 925-3254, highlights a variety of musicians, and there are always plenty of hayrides, barbecues, and much more to fill the sunny days and warm nights. For general outdoor recreation information call the Aspen Ranger District Office at (970) 925-3445.
Aspen nightlife heats up after 10 pm. For great people-watching and celebrity sightings, check out the The Little Nell. Many consider Club Chelsea a favorite bar. For earlier fun, happy hour at The Cantina gets loud and rambunctious, and good live bands can be found at The Double Diamond and The Mustang Cafe. For a casual college student hangout, try The Cooper Street Pier. Shooters offers beer deals and shots in a country-western atmosphere.
The restaurants in Aspen are as diverse as the nightclubs. There is enough variety to appease everyone’s appetite. The Merry Go Round at Aspen Highlands has incredible apple strudel, and Boogie’s downtown is a 1950s-style diner that even has Elvis’ red Corvette parked between the tables. You’ll find Cajun, Creole, and Italian food right outside your door.
Limited nightlife does exist at the village of Snowmass, but the real action takes place twelve miles down the highway. Those who enjoy mellow evenings can check out the cozy Krabloonik Restaurant (the same place the dogs find shelter) with an excellent selection of food, wood-burning stoves, and lanterns hung from the ceiling. Call at least a couple of months in advance for ski-season dinner reservations, (970) 923-3953. The Timbermill and Brother’s Grill are the spots for après-ski action and live music. Snowmass is also home to John Denver’s Tower Restaurant located on the Mall.
Traveling to the town of Aspen is extremely easy due to its popularity. The most common method is to fly into Denver International Airport and then jump on a United Express connecting flight to Aspen Airport, just three miles from town. Call (800) 241-6522 for flight information. Another option is to take Amtrak, (800) 872-7245, to Glenwood Springs, forty miles from the resort. Transportation from the airport/train terminal to the resort is available from High Mountain Taxi, (303) 925-8294, or Aspen Limousine & Bus Service, (800) 222-2112 or (303) 925-2400.
It is not necessary to have a car to get around because the local mass transit system is very good. A free shuttle bus runs daily between Aspen proper and its four main peaks. The local shuttle service runs from 7am to 1am between Aspen Mountain, Aspen Highlands, Aspen, Buttermilk, Snowmass, and other stops within one hour of Snowmass. Schedule information is available by calling (970) 925-8484.
Some employers offer employee housing units at discounted rates. If not available, housing can be difficult (but not impossible) to find during the peak ski season. The population of Aspen jumps from a normal 6,000 to an incredible 30,000 when tourists are included, so check out possible apartments before the busy season and expect to put down first and last month’s rent and a security deposit. For help in locating housing, call the Aspen/Pitkin County Housing Authority at (970) 920-5050 or check the local newspapers for current listings.
It is best to arrive prior to the busy season to secure housing and find the best accommodations for your money. Call the Snowmass Village Housing Authority at (970) 923-2360 for information on rates and availability.
The best time to apply for ski season jobs in both Aspen and Snowmass is October and early November. The Aspen Chamber Resort Association sponsors an annual job fair, usually in October. Call ACRA at (970) 925-1940 for more information. It is a good idea to attend the fair, fill out an application, and interview in person. For the summer season, hiring usually occurs in May and early June. Over 1,000 employees are hired during the winter and summer seasons. Visit the Aspen Employment Website.