Can’t get your party on with the celebrities in Aspen? Fire up the jet, head down to Telluride, and party with theirs! This former Victorian mining town offers authentic Colorado history and is the expert skiers nirvana. While the town itself is nestled in a stunning box canyon, the ski resort sprawls into the surrounding San Juan Mountains. Started in 1972 by a former Aspenite, Telluride has grown into a legendary Colorado ski resort and has created legendary ski bums.

Purchasing 32 tickets (family of 4 ski vacation resorts for 8 days) directly from the resort would cost over $2,300, whereas purchasing 8 of the 4-day discount passes would only cost $472. That is an additional $1,800 in savings. So, by renting directly from the owner your total savings is now close to $3,000!

Les Escaldes, Andorra (1710m to 2640m)- Les Escaldes could be the vacation destination for people into winter months sports such as snowboarding and skiing. Due to the location of Les Escaldes, snow is available year round. You will find represented some charming hotels in Andorra.

As you are preparing to go you need to plan what equipment and clothing that you will need. If at all possible it is desirable to have your own skis, poles, and boots. This equipment should be professionally fitted to each skier. If this is a first trip and you are not sure if skiing is going to be your sport it is possible to rent equipment at many of the ski resorts. This is also a good option if you are combining your ski trip with another tourist type journey. There are many savings to be had by first researching then buying online.

Other ski-experts say that the snow IS out there, you just have to look for it. The problem is that when a tourist booked and paid for a trip back in August, they can’t back peddle and change plans when they show up on the slopes in January and find the only snow is being spit out by a large snow-cone machine.

Then, instead of being at the bottom of a heap of rubble, we wound up in a high place almost like a hotels ski. We were so happy to be on top of it all.

It’s not easy to have a ski resort in an area that routinely tops 100 degrees each summer and has weather as varied and as changeable as it can possibly be. If you don’t like the weather in St. Louis, it’s said, wait around a couple of days and it will be completely different.

NOTE: Echo Park, which is the closest snow recreation area to Denver, is smaller than Eldora (75 acres versus 680), has one lift compared to Eldora’s 12, and their web site gave me the impression that it caters to the 16 to24-year old snowboarders who live in Denver. It’s probably a great place, but not for beginning skiers.