Steamboat Ski Resort

Coordinates: 40°27′32″N 106°48′11″W / 40.459°N 106.803°W / 40.459; -106.803
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Steamboat Resort
Base of the mountain in 2008
Steamboat Resort is located in the United States
Steamboat Resort
Steamboat Resort
Location in the United States
Steamboat Resort is located in Colorado
Steamboat Resort
Steamboat Resort
Location in Colorado
LocationRoutt County, ColoradoU.S.
Nearest major citySteamboat Springs
Coordinates40°27′32″N 106°48′11″W / 40.459°N 106.803°W / 40.459; -106.803
OwnerAlterra Mountain Company
Vertical  3,668 feet (1,118 m)
Top elevation10,568 feet (3,221 m)
Base elevation  6,900 feet (2,103 m)
Skiable area3,741 acres (15.1 km2)
Trails170 total
- 14% beginner
- 42% intermediate
- 44% advanced
Longest run"Why Not" ~ 3 miles (5 km)
Lift system21 total: 3 gondolas,
1 high-speed six-pack,
7 high-speed quad chairs,
4 triple chairs,
2 double chairs,
6 surface lifts
Terrain parksYes, 4
Snowfall400 inches (33.3 ft; 10.2 m)
Night skiingYes

Steamboat Resort is a major ski area in the western United States, located in northwestern Colorado at Steamboat Springs. Operated by the Steamboat Ski & Resort Corporation, it is located on Mount Werner, a mountain in the Park Range in the Routt National Forest. Originally named Storm Mountain ski area, it opened on January 12, 1963.[1][2]

The ski area has 297 named trails spread over 2,965 acres (4.6 sq mi; 12.0 km2). Of those, 14% are classified as beginner-level, 42% as intermediate, and 44% as advanced. It also contains the Mavericks Superpipe, one of the premier[according to whom?] half-pipes in North America. Limited trails available for night skiing began to be offered in the 2013–14 season.

In honor of local Olympian Buddy Werner (1936–1964), Storm Mountain was renamed Mount Werner in 1965,[3] and the ski area's name was changed as well.[4] Dallas-based conglomerate LTV purchased Mount Werner ski area in the fall of 1969,[5] rebranded it as "Steamboat" the following summer,[6] and hired world champion and Olympic silver medalist Billy Kidd as director of skiing.[7][8][9]


In 2017, Steamboat Ski Resort was purchased by Alterra Mountain Company from Intrawest, a Canadian resort management company. Steamboat was one of the seven resorts owned by Intrawest.[10] Prior to Intrawest's ownership, Steamboat was owned by the American Skiing Company. Intrawest purchased the resort at the end of the 2006–07 season.[1]

Mountain statistics[edit]


  • Base: 6,900 feet (2,103 m)
  • Summit: 10,568 feet (3,221 m)
  • Vertical Rise: 3,668 feet (1,118 m)


  • Area: 2,965 acres (4.6 sq mi; 12.0 km2)
  • Trails: 169 total (14% beginner, 42% intermediate, 44% advanced)
  • Longest Run: "Why Not" ~ 3 miles (5 km)
  • Terrain Parks: 6 (including Mavericks Superpipe)
  • Average Annual Snowfall: 400 inches (33.3 ft; 10.2 m)[1]

The three lower mountain lifts (the gondola, Thunderhead Express, and Christie Peak Express) service most of the green runs, which include the long Why Not trail from Thunderhead. Blue trails can be found mostly off of these same lifts, plus the two high speed quads on Sunshine Peak, although more funnel to the Sunshine Express lift. A couple of blue runs can also be found from the Four Points, BAR-UE, and Storm Peak Express lifts, as are a few in Morningside Park.

The blue-black runs are scattered about the mountain, but most of them are located off the Pony Express lift in Pioneer Ridge. Black runs can be found off of all five high-speed quads, the highest concentrations are on north Sunshine Peak, most of Storm Peak, Pioneer Ridge, and Morningside Park. The sole double-black runs of the area make up the extreme terrain on Mount Werner.

Slope Aspects[edit]

  • North: 20%[11]
  • South: 23%
  • West: 55%
  • East: 2%


Name Type Manufacturer Built Vertical
Steamboat Gondola Gondola 8 Doppelmayr 2019 2176 8849 Replaced an older Doppelmayr gondola that was built in 1985. Bottom terminal was moved uphill in 2021 to make room for Wild Blue.
Christie Peak Express High speed six pack Leitner-Poma 2007 1102 4636 Has a mid-unload turn station, and is open for night skiing. Lower segment was realigned in 2022 to make room for Wild Blue Gondola Stage I.
Storm Peak Express High Speed Quad Doppelmayr 1992 2159 6885 Former bubble lift
Sundown Express High Speed Quad Doppelmayr 1992 1936 5418 Former bubble lift. Provides access to "Shadows" off skiers right. Shadows is widely renowned as the most difficult glade skiing in the continental United States
Thunderhead Express High Speed Quad Doppelmayr 1997 1641 5530
Pony Express High Speed Quad Garaventa CTEC 1998 1653 5003
Sunshine Express High Speed Quad Poma 2006 1280 5647 Operated from 1997 to 2006 as the Tombstone Express at Canyons Resort
Elkhead Express High Speed Quad Doppelmayr 2016 726 2411
Four Points Triple Yan 1983 1361 4012 Originally known as Storm Peak from 1983 to 1992 and ran to the summit of Storm Peak. The lift was shortened in 1992 to end at Four Points Hut, with the Storm Peak Express replacing the upper section of the lift. Later retrofitted with Doppelmayr sheaves and chairs.
South Peak Triple Yan 1984 305 1700 Retrofitted with Doppelmayr chairs from the former Sunshine triple
Morningside Triple Garaventa CTEC 1996 545 2685 Main lift outside of the Morningside bowl.
Burgess Creek Triple Leitner-Poma 2004 939 3490
Bashor Double Yan 1974 305 1505 Oldest lift on the mountain, and dedicated terrain park and race training lift.
Bar-UE Double Yan 1977 1352 4820
Wildhorse Gondola Pulse Gondola 6 Leitner-Poma 2009 104 1942 Does not serve any skiable terrain, built to connect Wildhorse Meadows (Housing development) to the base area.
Wild Blue Gondola 10 passenger gondola Doppelmayr 2022 (stage 1)
2023 (stage 2)
590 (stage 1)
2782 (stage 2)
4267 (stage 1)
12243 (stage 2)
Two-stage gondola running from the base area to the summit of Sunshine Peak, with a midway turn station serving the Greenhorn Ranch. Constructed over a two year period, the lower stage opened in 2022 and the upper stage opened in 2023.
Greenhorn Ranch Express High speed quad Doppelmayr 2022 230 1206 Learning lift, with auto-locking safety bars
Mahogany Ridge Express High speed quad Leitner-Poma 2023 1868 6329

According to, plans are in the works to place a high-speed six-pack along the Thunderhead lift line.

The $15 million gondola replacement project lasted through the summer of 2019. Some of the helicopter-enabled tower replacements were streamed online, and the lift was extensively tested under load. It opened with fanfare on November 23, 2019, at the start of the winter 2019-2020 season, but broke the next day on November 24,[12] when a main driveshaft sheared (possibly due to unexpected stress during transit from Austria). The manufacturer (Doppelmayr) sent a team from Austria to help with the situation, and the Steamboat lift Ops worked together around the clock to build, ship, and install the replacement part(s). The gondola reopened on December 5, almost 12 days later.[13]

NCAA Championships[edit]

Steamboat has hosted the NCAA Skiing Championships nine times (1968, 1969, 1979, 1993, 2006, 2010, 2016, 2018,2024).


  1. ^ a b c Fetcher, Bill. "History of the Steamboat Ski Area". Retrieved 19 July 2010.
  2. ^ "Storm Mountain ski area will open officially Saturday when lift starts". Steamboat Pilot. (Steamboat Springs, Colorado). January 10, 1963. p. 1.
  3. ^ "Mt. Werner dedicated at impressive rites Sunday". Steamboat Pilot. (Steamboat Springs, Colorado). February 18, 1965. p. 1.
  4. ^ Silva, Kelly (December 15, 2001). "A mountain of history". Steamboat Pilot. (Steamboat Springs, Colorado). Retrieved February 4, 2021.
  5. ^ "LTV buys Mt. Werner in 8 million dollar transaction". Steamboat Pilot. (Steamboat Springs, Colorado). September 25, 1969. p. 1.
  6. ^ "LTV Skiing focus on Steamboat". Steamboat Pilot. (Steamboat Springs, Colorado). June 18, 1970. p. 1.
  7. ^ "Bill Kidd signs on". Steamboat Pilot. (Steamboat Springs, Colorado). September 3, 1970. p. 1.
  8. ^ Rand, Abby (August 1971). "Champagne skiing on a great natural mountain". SKI. p. 48.
  9. ^ "Steamboat's a comin'". SKI. August 1971. p. 63. {{cite magazine}}: Unknown parameter |agency= ignored (help)
  10. ^ "Intrawest – Vacation Destination Resorts". Intrawest. Retrieved 19 July 2010.
  11. ^ "Best Ski Resorts: Steamboat Ski Resort Terrain, Snow Quality and Mountain Ranks". ZRankings. ZRankings LLC. Retrieved 7 April 2015.
  12. ^ "New gondola closes due to malfunction day after opening; might not be in operation for busy holiday week". 25 November 2019.
  13. ^ "Steamboat's $15 million gondola is finally working more than a week after it opened". 5 December 2019.

External links[edit]