Top 5 New Year’s Eve Parties in the High Country

By Steve Graham

If you plan to be in the mountains for New Year’s Eve, you can catch torchlight parades at most ski areas, and plenty of fireworks shows. Here are five great ways to ring in 2018 on the slopes.


Cooper turns 75

Ski Cooper, outside Leadville, has been one of Colorado’s hidden gems since 1942. On New Year’s Eve, Cooper will celebrate its 75th anniversary with a torchlight parade, birthday cake, balloons and live music. 

And if you do some after-dark skiing, celebrate with a barrel-aged Night Run Russian imperial stout at Periodic Brewing in Leadville.


 Photo courtesy of Tom Stillo and Ski Crested Butte

Photo courtesy of Tom Stillo and Ski Crested Butte

Mountaintop celebration

Crested Butte is offering a new type of New Year’s Eve party this year. Hardy revelers can take a self-guided skin or snowshoe tour to the top of Ten Peaks and watch fireworks while enjoying appetizers, champagne and dessert. Cost is $50 per person. 

To keep the celebration rolling after hours, pick up some Montanya rum and make cocktails.


Powderhorn jam

Powderhorn Mountain Resort hosts a torchlight parade, fireworks, New Year’s Rail Jam and live music on New Year’s Eve. The Slopeside Inn also offers food and drink specials until 10 p.m.

Meadery of the Rockies in nearby Palisade always offers creative honey wines to complete the night.


Silverton ski party

Silverton Mountain turns New Year’s into a three-day event marking the opening weekend for this southwest Colorado resort. Resort packages include three days of guided skiing, parties each night, lunch and après drinks every day, and more. Keep in mind that Silverton is only for advanced and expert skiers, so if you need another drink to recover from a hard day of skiing, pick up some Baltic Porter from Avalanche Brewing Co. in Silverton. 


 Photo courtesy Steamboat Ski Resort

Photo courtesy Steamboat Ski Resort

All-ages fun in Steamboat

Steamboat Springs includes the whole family in its New Year’s Eve festivities. A torchlight parade starts at 5:15 p.m. Later, a party in the Grand Ballroom will include magic, juggling and comedy. Enjoy face painting and other kids’ activities during the evening and then watch some fireworks.

For a more adult celebration, take the gondola to mountain-top Thunderhead Lodge and enjoy music, a dessert bar, a chocolate fondue station and appetizers.

Also, Mahogany Ridge Brewery in Steamboat offers a few mountain-themed brews, including the Alpenglow amber.