Keystone: The evolution |

Keystone: The evolution

by Kimberly Nicoletti
summit daily news
Summit County, CO Colorado

Keystone’s buzzword in the last couple of years has been “evolution.” It has blended its family-friendly atmosphere with bars and events geared more toward Gen Xers, and it seems to have found a winning combination.

The enormous Area 51 Terrain Park is Colorado’s largest night park. And the A-51 chair takes riders up in five minutes.

Cat skiing with Keystone Adventure Tours delivers guests to untouched powder when conditions warrant, and when they don’t, the snow’s usually pretty nice anyway. This season, Keystone expanded its snowcat skiing operation into Independence Bowl, adding 278 acres of snowcat-served terrain. It offers pitches approaching a 50 percent grade and amounts to a total of 858 acres of snowcat skiing.

Still, the same terrain that always had made Keystone’s three peaks ” Dercum Mountain, North Peak and the Outback ” so much fun continues to be the resort’s biggest draw. Powder hounds love tree skiing in the Outback, and bumps on North Peak will make your thighs burn. Smooth fall-line runs on the front side provide some of the most consistent intermediate skiing in the county.

And did we mention it’s the only resort in Summit to offer long runs with fun whip-de-dos at night?

Keystone Village also has plenty to keep non-skiers, or those with enormous energy, busy. Try skating on the picturesque lake, or check out the sleigh rides, tubing or snowbiking.

On March 20, River Run transforms into a miniature New Orleans, complete with a float parade, balcony parties, feather masks, hurricanes and beads. The ski patrol always promises a zany float. On St. Patrick’s Day, you can dance your best jig in ski boots, with plenty of green beer, of course. And on March 31, the weekend spices up with blues music and barbecue. Right before closing, the Boarding for Breast Cancer event focuses on increasing awareness about the disease, especially among youth.

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