Best Time to Visit Winter Park Resort


The best time to visit Winter Park in Colorado greatly depends on what your goals are for your travel. Winter Park, Colorado, is a lively mountain town in North America that offers world-class skiing and snowboarding in winter, along with abundant hiking, mountain biking, fishing, and other warm-weather activities in summer and fall.

Determining the optimal time to visit Winter Park depends largely on the types of experiences travelers hope to have. The information below outlines the pros and cons of visiting during different seasons to help travelers decide when to plan their Colorado getaway.


  • Winter is peak season, with ideal conditions for downhill skiing and snowboarding from November through April.
  • Summer provides mild weather perfect for scenic lift rides, hiking, mountain biking, and water sports from June through August.
  • Fall features gorgeous foliage along with comfy daytime temperatures for biking, golf, and wildlife viewing in September and October.
  • Spring is budget-friendly, with family fun like Easter celebrations and fishing in April, May, and early June.

Winter Park Ski Season

For powder hounds, winter is the obvious choice to experience world-class skiing and riding at one of Colorado’s top resorts. Winter Park Resort, nestled in the heart of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado, stands out as a top-tier skiing destination in the United States. From the opening day in mid-November through the closing day in mid-April, Winter Park receives over 300 inches of light, dry snowfall across its 3,081 skiable acres.

With an average high temperature of 32°F in January and February, be sure to pack plenty of warm layers. Nearly all accommodations in town offer ski-in/ski-out access or shuttle services to get you on the mountain faster. Lift ticket deals can also help offset costs when planning a ski vacation.

While winter may be peak season, early spring, from March through mid-April, still brings great snow conditions without the holiday crowds. Lodging rates also tend to dip down after the President’s Day rush in February.

Local Experiences and Culture

Beyond world-class skiing, Winter Park also serves up a slice of authentic Rocky Mountain culture throughout the year. Wander through downtown to explore locally-owned shops, galleries, restaurants, and cafes.

Popular events like the annual Winter Carnival, St. Patrick’s Day celebrations, and the Wintersköl festival offer family-friendly fun with live music, entertainment, and activities highlighting the town’s heritage. For some Wild West flair, catch a summer rodeo performance at the Flying Heels Arena just north of town.

And be sure to sample the local cuisine! Favorites include game meats like elk and bison, craft beers from nearby microbreweries, and old-fashioned sweet treats from the town’s bakeries.

Accommodations and Deals

Winter Park provides diverse lodging options to suit different budgets and preferences. Major ski-in/ski-out resorts like the Winter Park Resort, Vintage Hotel, Zephyr Mountain Lodge, and Fraser Crossing offer premium amenities and easy slope access.

More affordable choices like the Best Western Alpenglo Lodge or Hideaway Park provide shuttle services to the mountain. Vacation rentals and BandBs offer intimate, local-approved alternatives.

The best deals on Winter Park lift tickets and lodging specials typically occur in the spring and fall shoulder seasons. Kids 12 and under are always ski-free with paying adults. Multi-day lift tickets, season passes, and combo activity packages can also yield significant savings compared to single-day prices.

Vacation Packages and Planning

Booking an all-inclusive Winter Park ski vacation package takes the guesswork out of planning a mountain getaway. Most deals bundle lodging, lift tickets, equipment rentals, and sometimes extras like ski lessons, transportation, or dining credits.

Top family-friendly packages tout resort amenities like pools, games rooms, and supervised kid’s activities. Meanwhile, thrill-seekers may opt for heli-skiing adventures or guided backcountry tours.

Travelers arranging their own itineraries should research trail maps and snow reports, allowing time to acclimate to the altitude. Having appropriate cold-weather gear and snow tires also ensures safe, enjoyable travel through the High Country.

Family-Friendly and Non-Ski Activities

While skiing and snowboarding may be Winter Park’s claim to fame, this mountain town offers abundant off-slope activities for non-skiers, too. Families with kids will love tubing hills like Fraser Tubing or the resort’s Super Gauge Express.

Scenic snowcat tours, snowmobiling, ice skating, snowshoe tours, and cross-country skiing offer fresh-air fun for all ages. Or stay cozy indoors with craft workshops, bowling, movies, and shopping.

As temperatures warm come spring, activities expand to include scenic lift rides, hiking, mountain biking, golf, mini-golf, amusement parks, and more. With so many options, boredom is never a problem.

Après-Ski and Entertainment

When legs tire from carving powder, Winter Park’s lively après-ski scene revives spirits. Popular pubs like Ullr’s and The Lodge at Sunspot feature live music, DJs, and festive happy hour specials for unwinding after an epic day.

For family dining, favorites like Hernando’s Pizza Pub and Deno’s Mountain Bistro balance hearty, affordable fare with a welcoming, casual vibe. More upscale restaurants like The Vintage Hotel’s Pepe Osaka’s Fish Taco and Tequila Bar also satisfy sophisticated palates.

Outdoor Adventures and Tours

Looking to explore more of Winter Park’s vast wilderness? Sign up for a guided snowshoeing tour to traverse peaceful mountain vistas. Or join a thrilling snowcat tour along the Continental Divide.

For animal lovers, Winter Park’s Trough wildlife tours showcase the area’s thriving elk, bighorn sheep, and mule deer populations. Snowmobiling adventures climb high above tree lines, granting access to stunning terrain not always reachable on skis.

Warmer seasons welcome scenic lift rides, hiking, fishing, ziplines, and mountain biking galore! With such diversity, Winter Park delivers nonstop outdoor fun all year.

Events and Seasonal Highlights

Beyond its wealth of recreational opportunities, Winter Park also hosts exciting annual events and festivals. Top winter highlights include the New Year’s Eve Torchlight Parade, Winter Carnival, St. Patrick’s Day celebrations, and the popular Wintersköl festival.

Spring features Easter egg hunts and concerts along with the annual Dummy Downhill event, where amateur engineers race wacky homemade contraptions down the slopes.

Summer welcomes hot air balloon rallies, beer festivals, art fairs, rodeo competitions, and lively July 4th festivities. When the aspens flaunt their golden fall foliage, Oktoberfest, chile cook-offs, and more keep the party going.


What is the best time to visit Winter Park?

Winter is the most popular for downhill skiing and snowboarding. For milder weather and cheaper rates, visit in spring, summer, or fall.

What family-friendly activities does Winter Park offer?

Top picks include tubing hills, snowcat tours, bowling, mini-golf, amusement parks, lift rides, hiking, biking, fishing, ziplines, and seasonal events.

Where are the best places to stay in Winter Park?

Major ski-in/ski-out resorts like Winter Park Resort, Vintage Hotel, and Zephyr Mountain Lodge offer premium amenities. More affordable options with shuttle access are also available in town and near Fraser.

What is there to do besides skiing in Winter Park?

Some more things to do in Winter Park are snowmobiling, ice skating, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, snowcat tours, wildlife viewing, scenic lift rides, mountain biking, golfing, fishing, hiking, shopping, dining, and frequent events. And if you’re looking for something a little more simple, a visit to the Rocky Mountain National Park is sure to be an enjoyable and educational excursion.


About the author

Ransom Patterson

My expertise in Colorado life extends beyond just residing here; it’s also about living actively within the community. I spend my time cycling through Denver’s trails, experimenting with local cuisines, and immersing myself in the local music scene. These activities give me a unique perspective on the cultural and outdoor offerings of Colorado. This hands-on approach allows me to provide insider tips and personal recommendations that resonate with both locals and visitors alike.