Monarch Ski and Snowboard Area is located 18 miles west of the Colorado town of Salida just below Monarch Pass in the San Isabel National Forest. The distance from Denver is about 155 miles, and the trip is well worth it.
Expect fresh and often untracked deep powder as you ski over the 350 inches of natural snowfall which provides outstanding skiing on 1,600 acres of high alpine skiing and snowboarding. Lifts provide access to 700 acres and the gondola ride will provide you with panoramic views of five spectacular mountain ranges. 54 runs with a vertical drop of 1,155' of drop.
Another 900 backcountry acres is accessible by snowcat for advanced and expert skiers. Very deep powder and exciting slopes await the adventurous skiers, although be aware of the extra cost of the snowcat.
Monarch is an old-fashioned family-oriented area, and has an on-site day care for infants of two months of age to programs for kids 3 to 6. Other activities include ice skating, a soak in a nearby hot springs pool, a scenic snowcat tour, snowmobiling and enjoying the local festivities.
Monarch Ski Resort is located on scenic US Highway 50 between the Royal Gorge and Gunnison, 18 miles west of the town of Salida. Most people take Highway 285 from Denver to US 50, and then west for 15 miles to Monarch Ski Resort.