So you're visiting Denver for Spring Break and want to do a little skiing, snowboarding or tubing. We get it! Who needs sandy beaches when the white fluffy stuff is calling your name? Echo's a great spot for a little taste of all that Colorado's incredible mountains have to offer, without breaking the budget or spending all your time in I-70 traffic.
Here's some of what you need to know to be prepared.
RESERVATIONS OR NAH?
Skiing and snowboarding: nah. Come on up! But, as a heads up, Rentals is first come, first serve. Plan ahead if you're arriving early in the day or later in the evening - and if you're going to rent equipment or clothing from us. More on rentals below.
Tubing: yes! Check our website for availability. We do sell out so even if it looks like there's a lot of capacity on the day you're planning to visit, we recommend booking in advance to make sure you get the time you want. Check out our website for a full low down on what to expect, rules, policies - the whole deal.
Our parking lots can get pretty full on busy days. We always recommend carpooling, either with your own vehicle or with a Zipcar (shout out to helping save Mama Earth), but, of course, there are a few options for people coming up. Below are some details on commonly chosen transportation, but the #1 thing is make sure you have a plan and set up rides before getting to Echo. We don't want anyone feeling stuck.
We love our friends down at local shuttle Need A Ride. Check them out to schedule rides to and from. They know the roads and Echo well! Plus, they're just some really cool Coloradians that you're gonna have a blast with.
Renting a car can be a great solution, but make sure you know what you're renting. Not all rental cars are created equally and we always recommend those with 4WD or AWD when driving in the mountains in winter. It might be a few extra bucks, but it's worth it compared to the cost of a tow truck or repairs from an accident. Oh yea, and it's the law. Tickets aren't usually included in the Spring Break budget.
Rideshares like Uber or Lyft are super convenient and are pretty keen on dropping guests off, however, they aren't good about coming back for a ride back down the mountain. If this is a route you're considering, make sure you arrange a ride home before you arrive at Echo. Uber and Lyft both offer scheduling rides days in advance so explore if that's an option.
SKI + SNOWBOARD TICKETS
As we mentioned, no need for a reservation with ski and snowboard tickets. Just swing by the front desk and get your ticket to ski and ride right there! First door on the left.
As mentioned above, rentals is first come, first serve. Renting on-site is definitely the easiest way to get the gear you need.. but that's assuming it's available! We do sell out of clothing and some equipment on busy days. Plan to arrive early in the morning or later in the evening for your best bet on gear being available.
The process is also very personalized and can take some time, especially if you've never worn ski or snowboard boots and equipment. Gearing up takes some work! If you want to skip the wait and just get your ticket to hit the mountain, check out our friends at Boone Mountain Sports or rent somewhere in town before heading up.
TERRAIN + CONDITIONS
Echo's terrain is mostly intermediate. That means we have a little Beginner and a little Expert terrain, but most of our terrain is somewhere in the middle. That said, skiing and snowboarding are very difficult. Most of our terrain is considered more advanced... meaning, it takes practice! No chairlift ride is worth an ambulance ride. Don't ruin your trip with a trip to the hospital.
Don't expect to be cruising down the mountain on your first day. Come in with the right expectations and bring the right attitude, and you'll have a great time!
We groom every morning to ensure the snow is nice and soft when you get out there. We can't control the weather so check nearby weather stations for forecasts to know what to expect for the day of your visit.
LEARNING TO SKI OR BOARD?
We don't offer traditional lessons, but we do recognize some folks want or need a little help now and then. That's why we created Echo Mountain Ambassadors. They're friendly employees hanging out in the beginner area to give pointers, tips, and suggestions on how to get you moving towards the next level. If a lesson is what you seek, they aren't a replacement for that, but if you want to give it a shot, try to figure it out a bit on your own, they may just be the perfect combination of encouragement and advice.
Like we said above - the right attitude goes a long way! Laugh when you fall, cheer when you do well, and get that perfect Instagram shot.
STARVIN MARVIN? BROTHERS' GRILLE HAS THE GOODS.
Our restaurant is no ordinary ski area cafeteria. Everything is made to order and tastes like it too! We're pretty proud of our food and drinks, but like some of the other parts of our operation, hands-on love and passion can take a little time. Our restaurant staff are definitely skilled at hustling - you can see them slanging food as quickly as possible while maintaining that quality our guests love. Be patient and give 'em a high five when that beautiful Echo Burger and "life-changing" waffle fries comes out.
As a heads up, you're welcome to bring some snacks, but don't roll in with a microwave or crock pot. Also, no outside alcohol is allowed anywhere on property.
DRINKING AND SMOKING
As we mentioned, no outside alcohol. Leave it at home. We have a great selection of beers on tap and a variety of drinks to help you celebrate your day on the mountain.
Some of our guests visit Colorado to partake in other activities and substances. We're still living and rocking in the good ol' USA where Uncle Sam says certain substances are not ok. We follow his lead.
If you want a cigarette, head to the parking lot.
If you're looking to smoke something else, wait til you're back home safely for the night.
We certainly don't want anyone hitting the windy mountain roads under the influence of any substances... other than stoke from a great day shredding!
ANYTHING WE MISSED?
See you soon!