UCCS, local businesses offer ways to get on the mountain

March 2, 2015

Audrey Jensen
[email protected]

After the last two weeks of snow, skiers and snowboarders might be traveling deep into the mountains to ride the fresh powder down the slopes, bowls and terrains located at the different ski parks.

Each park offers different venues to ride as well as places to rent equipment, restaurants and everything else the mountains offer. If you do not have gear, rentals are at Colorado Ski&Golf, Christy Sports and Hoyle, which are all located in Colorado Springs.

Students can plan a trip with friends or hitch a bus ride with the UCCS Ski and Ride Club.

Sophomore Renee Swartz, Ski and Ride Club president, has been snowboarding since she was in sixth grade and prefers Colorado out of the six states she has skied and snowboarded in.

“Colorado will still be my favorite by far, nothing can beat Keystone for me.”

Locations visited by both natives and out-of-towners include Keystone, Breckenridge, Arapahoe Basin, Copper and Monarch.

Students who buy certain passes can have access to one, two or up to twelve different parks, some of which are in Utah and California.

Junior biology major Dalton Lukasik said in an e-mail that he prefers to ski at Breckenridge.

“While the runs are not as long as resorts like Keystone, Breckenridge offers more challenging in bounds terrain and has a multitude of hike-to-terrains. In addition to this, Breckenridge tends to get more snow than the other resorts in Colorado,” Lukasik said.

Instead of buying lift tickets every time, a pass to multiple ski resorts could save students money if they plan on going a lot.

One “Epic Local Pass” gives the buyer unlimited access to Keystone and Arapahoe Basin.

Lukasik said that skiing has become an important aspect of his life because there is always room for improvement.

“Whether you ski backcountry, groomers, park, or bumps, there are always ways to challenge yourself and test your own limitations.”

Voted as one of the best terrain parks in North America is “Area 51” at Keystone where skiers and snowboarders may spend their time on rails and jumps. This terrain park is open during the night as well.
Swartz said that she enjoys riding the rails in “Area 51.”

“I would go to A-Basin if you have a family, it is more family oriented. I’d go to Keystone if you like terrain parks,” said Swartz.

The next “Ski and Soak” trip through the S.O.L.E. office of the Rec Center is March 14. The cost is $85. Use of the Ski Shop at S.O.L.E., to care for and wax skis and snowboards, is free. The office is open from noon to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday.

“Skiing offers an escape from reality when life gets stressful; there is nothing quite like flying down a mountain,” Lukasik said.

Contact the S.O.L.E. office for more information
[email protected] or uccs.edu/campusrec/outdoor