Steamboat Ski Resort
Base of the mountain in 2008
|Location||Routt County, Colorado, U.S.|
|Nearest major city||Steamboat Springs|
|Vertical||3,668 feet (1,118 m)|
|Top elevation||10,568 feet (3,221 m)|
|Base elevation||6,900 feet (2,103 m)|
|Skiable area||2,965 acres (12.0 km2)|
|Runs||165 total |
- 14% beginner
- 42% intermediate
- 44% advanced
|Longest run||"Why Not" ~ 3 miles (5 km)|
|Lift system||23 total: 1 gondola,|
1 high-speed six-pack,
6 high-speed quad chairs,
4 triple chairs,
3 double chairs,
6 surface lifts
|Snowfall||400 inches (33.3 ft; 10.2 m)|
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.
The ski area has 169 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 with the 2013–14 season.
In honor of local Olympian Buddy Werner (1936–1964), Storm Mountain was renamed Mount Werner in 1965, and the ski area's name was changed as well. Dallas-based conglomerate LTV purchased Mount Werner ski area in the fall of 1969, rebranded it as "Steamboat" the following summer, and hired world champion and Olympic silver medalist Billy Kidd as director of skiing.
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. 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.
- 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)
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.
- North: 20%
- South: 23%
- West: 55%
- East: 2%
- 23 total
- 1 Gondola (formerly known as the Silver Bullet)
- 8-Passenger Gondola (2,200 ft. vertical rise, 9:00 ride time, Doppelmayr, installed 1986, completely replaced by Doppelmayr in 2019. New gondola has 38% higher capacity at 3600 per hour, max speed of 6 m/s, a 20% increase. First 8 passenger gondola in the world.)
- 1 high speed six pack
- Christie Peak Express (1,103 ft. vertical rise, 4:45 ride time, Leitner-Poma, installed 2007)
- 6 high speed quads
- Storm Peak Express (2,160 ft. vertical rise, 7:00 ride time, Doppelmayr, installed 1992)
- Sundown Express (1,936 ft. vertical rise, 5:30 ride time, Doppelmayr, installed 1992)
- Thunderhead Express (1,638 ft. vertical rise, 5:30 ride time, Doppelmayr, installed 1997)
- Pony Express (1,657 ft. vertical rise, 5:20 ride time, Garaventa CTEC, installed 1998)
- Sunshine Express (1,300 ft. vertical rise, 5:30 ride time, Poma, installed 2006, originally Tombstone Express at Canyons Resort installed in 1997.)
- Elkhead Express (710 ft. vertical rise, 2:30 ride time, Doppelmayr, installed 2016)
- 6 triple chairlifts
- Christie III (1,030 ft. vertical rise, 7:30 ride time, Lift Engineering (YAN), installed 1979, (used primarily on high demand days as an auxiliary lift to the Christie Peak Express. In 2007, the lift received Doppelmayr chairs from the Sunshine lift.)
- Preview (vertical rise NA, ride time NA, Lift Engineering (YAN), installed 2007, originally Southface(YAN) installed new in 1979)
- Four Points (1,366 ft. vertical rise, 7:30 ride time, Lift Engineering (YAN) with Doppelmayr chairs and sheaves. Originally installed 1983 as the Storm Peak lift, shortened to current length in 1992. In 2013, the lift received new Doppelmayr EJs.)
- South Peak (340 ft. vertical rise, 4:00 ride time, Lift Engineering (YAN), installed 1984. The lift received Doppelmayr chairs from the Sunshine lift in 2007.)
- Morningside (542 ft. vertical rise, 6:00 ride time, Garaventa-CTEC, installed 1996)
- Burgess Creek (950 ft. vertical rise, 7:30 ride time, Leitner-Poma, installed 2004)
- 3 double chairlifts
- Priest Creek (1,930 ft. vertical rise, 10:30 ride time, Lift Engineering (YAN) with Heron-Poma chairs, installed 1972, used primarily on high demand days as an auxiliary lift to the Sundown Express)
- Bashor (315 ft. vertical rise, 3:00 ride time, Lift Engineering (YAN), installed 1974)
- Bar-UE (1,380 ft. vertical rise, 9:00 ride time, Lift Engineering (YAN), installed 1977)
- 6 Surface
- Rough Rider (Surface Platter Tow) (140 ft. vertical rise, 3:00 ride time, Doppelmayr, installed 1989)
- Wrangler (Magic Carpet)
- Desperado (Magic Carpet)
- Easy Rider (Magic Carpet)
- Sundance (Magic Carpet)
- Buckaroo (Magic Carpet)
- 1 Gondola (formerly known as the Silver Bullet)
According to steamboat.com, 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 (early) start of the winter 2019-2020 season, and broke late on November 24 as a main driveshaft sheared (possibly due to unexpected stress during transit from Austria). The Doppelmayr and Steamboat teams in Austria, Utah, and Colorado worked together around the clock to build, ship, and install the replacement part, and the gondola reopened on December 5.
Historical season dates
- 2015 / 2016 Ski Season Dates: November 27, 2015 - April 10, 2016
- 2014 / 2015 Ski Season Dates: November 26, 2014 – April 12, 2015
- 2013 / 2014 Ski Season Dates: November 27, 2013 – April 16, 2014
- 2012 / 2013 Ski Season Dates: November 21, 2012 – April 14, 2013
- 2011 / 2012 Ski Season Dates: November 23, 2011 – April 15, 2012
- 2010 / 2011 Ski Season Dates: November 24, 2010 – April 10, 2011
- 2009 / 2010 Ski Season Dates: November 25, 2009 – April 11, 2010
- 2008 / 2009 Ski Season Dates: November 26, 2008 – April 12, 2009
- 2007 / 2008 Ski Season Dates: November 30, 2007 – April 6, 2008
- Fetcher, Bill. "History of the Steamboat Ski Area". ColoradoSkiHistory.com. Retrieved 19 July 2010.
- "Storm Mountain ski area will open officially Saturday when lift starts". Steamboat Pilot. (Steamboat Springs, Colorado). January 10, 1963. p. 1.
- "Mt. Werner dedicated at impressive rites Sunday". Steamboat Pilot. (Steamboat Springs, Colorado). February 18, 1965. p. 1.
- Silva, Kelly (December 15, 2001). "A mountain of history". Steamboat Pilot. (Steamboat Springs, Colorado). Retrieved February 4, 2021.
- "LTV buys Mt. Werner in 8 million dollar transaction". Steamboat Pilot. (Steamboat Springs, Colorado). September 25, 1969. p. 1.
- "LTV Skiing focus on Steamboat". Steamboat Pilot. (Steamboat Springs, Colorado). June 18, 1970. p. 1.
- "Bill Kidd signs on". Steamboat Pilot. (Steamboat Springs, Colorado). September 3, 1970. p. 1.
- Rand, Abby (August 1971). "Champagne skiing on a great natural mountain". SKI. p. 48.
- "Steamboat's a comin'". SKI. (advertisement). August 1971. p. 63.
- "Intrawest – Vacation Destination Resorts". Intrawest. Retrieved 19 July 2010.
- "Best Ski Resorts: Steamboat Ski Resort Terrain, Snow Quality and Mountain Ranks". ZRankings. ZRankings LLC. Retrieved 7 April 2015.