Out & About with Kids - - SKI USA, CANADA & JAPAN -

Renowned the world-over for its ‘Cham­pagne Pow­der’ and friendly hos­pi­tal­ity, over 100 eater­ies and bars, shop­ping and en­ter­tain­ment plus fan­tas­tic fam­ily ac­tiv­i­ties and ded­i­cated kids pro­grams and child­care, it’s easy to see why Steam­boat is con­sis­tently ranked one of the Top 10 fam­ily ski re­sorts in the US.

Lo­cated in north­west Colorado, di­rect daily flights from seven US air­ports into nearby Hay­den air­port make Steam­boat a very ac­ces­si­ble re­sort, or you can fly into the Colorado cap­i­tal of Den­ver and take the easy three-hour drive to the re­sort.

Ac­com­mo­da­tion op­tions are seem­ingly end­less and run the gamut of lodges, town­homes and con­do­mini­ums, and va­ca­tion homes to inns, mo­tels and great ho­tels in­clud­ing the Steam­boat Grand, just steps from the Steam­boat Gon­dola.

You might pre­fer the con­ve­nience and nov­elty of stay­ing in ski in/ski out ac­com­mo­da­tion, or choose any­thing from bud­get to lux­ury off­moun­tain, in the base area and down­town in Steam­boat Springs. Suites and fam­ily rooms are plen­ti­ful wher­ever you stay, and in most places you’ll find a host of fam­ily-friendly ameni­ties in­clud­ing ca­ble tv, Wi-Fi, and even swim­ming pools! Check the Steam­boat web­site for all lodg­ing al­ter­na­tives and pack­ages, many with bonus in­clu­sions.

On ar­rival it’s hard not to be im­pressed with the sheer scale of Steam­boat – it’s ac­tu­ally a com­plete moun­tain range with Mount Werner, Sun­shine Peak, Storm Peak, Thun­der­head Peak,

Pioneer Ridge, and Christie Peak, across 1200ha of ski­able ter­rain with trails for all abil­i­ties and 16 lifts. TIP: You’ll find the leg­endary Cham­pagne Pow­der in the gladed ar­eas of Pioneer Ridge, Sun­shine and Storm Peak. Fam­i­lies can also en­joy free moun­tain tours to­gether.

Kids ski free at Steam­boat – in fact Steam­boat pi­o­neered the first Kids Ski Free Pro­gram back in 1982! Steam­boat’s range of Kids Ski pro­grams is not only ex­ten­sive but also de­signed to work with each child’s in­di­vid­ual com­fort level. Lit­tle ones aged from 2.5 years to 3 years can spend the day in Buckeroos at Kid­die Cor­ral child care, or in Palomino Pals for 3 to 5 year-olds, with a one hour les­son, lunch and fun ac­tiv­i­ties in­cluded for both age groups. Mav­er­icks, aged 3.5 years to 4 years, and Sun­dance Kids aged 4 to Kinder­garten, can en­joy an all-day les­son with lunch and free lift ticket in­cluded. Pri­vate lessons are also avail­able.

Then there’s the jumps, bonks, jibs and rails for all skill lev­els across four fan­tas­tic ter­rain parks – Lil’ Rodeo, Sun­beam, Rab­bit Ears and Mav­er­icks. TIP: Pick up a com­pli­men­tary Lit­tle Red Wagon to load up the kids and head off on the Wagon Trail! Rough Rider Basin is a Wild West-themed kids-only zone with teepees, a log cabin and the Fort Rough Rider Pic­nic Area. Bud­ding snow­board­ers from First Grade to 15 years will love the all-day Kids Snow­board clin­ics

while Bandits is es­pe­cially for lit­tle snow­board­ers aged 4 years to Kinder­garten. Sun­beam board­er­cross is great for the whole fam­ily and per­fect for even the lit­tlest of shred­ders. TIP: Join the Steam­boat Snow­board staff in the base area at the free Bur­ton Riglet Park on se­lected days through­out the sea­son – great for kids 6 years and un­der.

Don’t for­get the snow­play ac­tiv­i­ties on the moun­tain! Fam­i­lies can en­joy even more of the beau­ti­ful Rocky Moun­tains snow­tub­ing, snow­shoe­ing, in snow­mo­biles or on a horse­drawn sleigh to­gether! And even the tini­est tots, too young to ski or snow­board, will have a bun­dle of fun in Steam­boat’s age-ap­pro­pri­ate child care pro­grams from 6 months old to 6 years.

Off-slope the fun con­tin­ues, with so many fam­ily-friendly eater­ies and shops at the base area and in the Old Town of Steam­boat Springs and, through­out the sea­son, you won’t want to miss any of the fun fam­ily en­ter­tain­ment and events at Gon­dola Square. TIP: Con­ve­niently kit out the whole fam­ily with ski and snow­board rentals from Steam­boat Ski & Sport in Gon­dola Square. steam­

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