Howelsen Hill Ski Area

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Written by Cassidy Barnes posted on Wednesday, February 10th, 2010

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Howelsen Hill Ski Area in Steamboat Springs, Colorado is one of the most historic places you can ski. It has sent more skiers to international competition than any other ski hill in North America.

An improvised slalom course in Steamboat Springs. The Winter Carnival was founded by Carl Howelsen, along with the ski hill. (Colorado Tourism Office)

The Norwegian, Carl Howelsen, founded the ski hill as well as the Steamboat Winter Carnival, which features ski racing, ski jumping, dog sledding and chariot events that run down Steamboat’s main street, Lincoln Avenue.

Howelsen is the smaller ski center, compared to Steamboat Springs Ski Resort, but is a great place to train how to get more air time on (or really, off) the slopes.

Both resorts have the luck of being located in the Yampa Valley of the Colorado Rockies, which has a relatively low elevation (peaking at just 7,136 feet at Howelsen), but still gets a ton of snow. Each year they receive over 350 inches of dry, smooth powder.

Opened in 1914, Howelsen has been recognized as one of the nation’s pioneer ski resorts, as it’s the oldest ski area in continuous use in Colorado. It is also home to the largest and most complete natural ski jumping complex on the continent.

It has been the place of training for over 70 Olympians, which have made over 90 Winter Olympics appearances. And fifteen members of the Colorado Ski Hall of Fame and six members of the National Ski Hall of Fame have called Howelsen their home ski area. How’s that for a vote of confidence?

Howelsen makes use of its 440 feet of vertical rise, it has a bobsled track and a series of ski jumps, the largest of which is a 90 meter jump. The local youth ski team practices here, the Steamboat Winter Sports Club, along with many U.S. Ski Team jumpers.

The resort is open from 1:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. The ski area is closed on Mondays.

The longest trail of the 15 is one mile long. There are four lifts at Howelson and snowmaking on 50% of their terrain. There are also 21 miles of cross-country trails to ski while you’re visiting the area.

Howelsen Hill Ski Area is located off Colorado Highway 40 in Steamboat Springs.

Phone: (970) 879-8499
Nordic Hotline: (970) 871-7084
Tubing at Howelsen Hill: (970) 819-8010

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