West of Aspen, the Aspen Highlands has the most extreme snowboarding terrain and is the most low-key of the four Aspen ski areas. On average, there are less than a thousand skiers per day. Aspen Highlands has 122 runs spread over 1,300 acres that are served by 5 lifts with a maximum vertical descent of 3,635 feet.. The runs are along a ridgeline between Maroon Creek and Castle Creek Valley.
For expert steeps, try Steeplechase (big moguls) and Olympic Bowl. Looking for adventure? Don't miss extreme Highland Bowl, which is a huge treeless exposed high-alpine cirque at 12,000 feet. It was opened in 2002 and is a perfect avalanche zone, though it is fully controlled. Make sure to climb to the top of Highlands bowl before dropping in for a 1,500 foot freeride descent. From the top of the Loge Peak lift, start hiking up to the south. There is a snowcat that runs at least part way up the hike, so flag it down. Once up on the ridge, there are several options for dropping in starting with Y-Zone, B-Zone, G-Zone and finally G-4. Overall, the Highlands bowl is spread over 270 acres. If you are seeking a backcountry experience? Check out the Maroon Bowl on the back of Highland Bowl.
Here’s a sweet lunch tip - try stopping by the old patrol shack which is now called the Cloud Nine Bistro.
For apres ski, try Woody Creek Tavern. For nightlife, check out Shooters or Escobar for dancing, Double Diamond for live music or Club Chelsea for rave. Still need more, try Jimmys American Bar, La Cocina, Lava Room and Erics Bar.
Overall, Aspen Highlands Ski Area is the 8th most popular snowboard & freeride destination of all 28 snowboarding resorts in Colorado.