At most ski resorts along the I-70 corridor in Colorado, 4pm means time is up. More remote lifts start closing at 3pm, and major lifts at the base of the mountains close at 4pm. At Breckenridge, for example, the Four O’Clock run leads skiers straight to the parking lot, making it a popular last run of the day.
The spell doesn’t have to be broken when the clock strikes four. For a memorable last few runs, head over to Keystone for night skiing. Not only a great way to wait out the horrendous I-70 eastbound traffic, it’s an amazing twilight experience.
Keystone is home to Colorado’s largest night skiing operation, including 243 acres of lighted terrain. Lifts close at 8pm. Check the Keystone resort website for a night ski calendar and more information.
Tips for night skiing at Keystone:
1) Bundle up. When the sun goes down, the temperature drops. Add layers to what you were wearing during the day, and consider using hand and foot warmers.
2) Perk up. After a full day of skiing and a big meal, putting the gear back on might seem like a task. Just find a second wind (in a large cup of coffee if necessary) and get back out there. Trust me – it will be worth it.
3) Light up. Eyes just don’t work as well in the dark, especially with goggles on. It’s easier to be seen if you can find a flashing LED light to wear, such as a light-up bike commuter cuff.
4) Look up. The best part about skiing after dark is the night sky above. Whether it’s a full moon or a smattering of stars, the view from the heights of the Rocky Mountains is amazing on a clear winter night. If you’re lucky, you may even catch a festive display of fireworks.