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Aspen-Snowmass ski resort provides beginner runs for kids. (Photograph by Blaine Harrington III, Corbis)

Skiing With Kids in Colorado

National Geographic Traveler columnist Heather Greenwood Davis is the magazine’s family travel advocate, guru, and soothsayer.

Here’s her latest advice:

Reader Question: We are planning a ski trip to Colorado with young kids. Which ski areas are good for beginners?

My Answer: Most of the Colorado resorts will have beginner hills (green), but choose carefully.

“At Copper Mountain, a lot of the green terrain is up high on the mountain,” says Jennifer Rudolph of Colorado Ski Country. The views are gorgeous, but if your kids are nervous about heights, choose a different property like Ski Granby Ranch, where beginner runs can be seen top to bottom from the base area.

Pick lodging that will limit how far you have to carry gear. Ski in/ski out options (or good shuttle bus service) and proximity to the hills you’ll use most are key considerations.

Beware of unexpected costs: Some lessons include a lift ticket; others don’t. Aspen-Snowmass (its “Buttermilk” mountain is perfect for novice skiers and has a new kids’ ski center) and Crested Butte provide free lift tickets to kids six and under.

Take advantage of off-mountain activities. Spend an off-slope day in the soaking pools at the Old Town Hot Springs in Steamboat Springs. Beaver Creek hosts the 2015 Alpine World Ski Championships (February), giving kids plenty to watch while they sip a hot chocolate between runs. 

Heather Greenwood Davis pens the “Traveling With Kids” column for National Geographic TravelerFollow Heather on Twitter @GreenwoodDavis

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