Monarch Mountain Deals & Travel Info

Located at the top of Monarch Pass in between Gunnison and Salida, this ski area is a hidden gem. Monarch Mountain boasts 350 inches of snowfall annually with 7 lifts and 67 trails. They offer a variety of terrain, with an emphasis on runs for experienced skiers. With a serious lack of crowds and high annual snowfall total, Monarch Mountain is the place for skiers who care more about snow than fancy resort amenities.

Monarch Mountain Vacation Deals

Check for Monarch Mountain vacation deals on the pages below!

Lift Ticket Deals

Lodging Deals

Mountain Stats

Monarch Mountain Highlights

This is a low-key ski area worth checking out. Here are the highlights:

Monarch Mountain skiing with Monarch Pass Colorado in the background

Getting to Monarch Mountain

Monarch is located near the top of Monarch Pass on US Hwy 50, 154 miles southwest of Denver, 123 miles west of Colorado Springs and 20 miles west of Salida.

From Salida, take Hwy 50 heading west. From Gunnison, take HWY 50 heading east. Be careful driving on the pass in winter, and make sure to check conditions before leaving.

Monarch Mountain, CO FAQ

Monarch is located on a mountain pass in between two small towns. It is not incredibly remote, but it isn’t close to any major Colorado cities. It’s almost 3 hours from Denver and 2.5 hours from Colorado Springs.

Monarch does have some beginner-friendly terrain. However, only about 14% of the trails are considered beginner and most of the mountain is suited for intermediate and advanced skiers.

Monarch Mountain gets some of the most snow of any ski area in Colorado, with 350-400 inches annually. This makes Monarch a target of serious powder chasers.

No, Monarch is a ski area rather than a resort. There is no lodging here and only basic dining amenities.

Yes, Monarch has some of the best cat skiing in Colorado with 1,635 acres of epic and varied terrain.

Trail Maps

Lift Access Terrain

monarch mountain colorado trail map

Cat Skiing Terrain

monarch mountain cat skiing area backcountry map

You can view the full-size trail map on the official Monarch Mountain website here.

Monarch Mountain Skiing & Riding Tips

Make the trek up to Mirkwood on a powder day. This hike-to terrain was once only open to cat skiing, but since 2005 has been reachable via a short but steep hike. Make exploring this area’s 130-acres of off-piste terrain a must – especially after a snowstorm.

Consider heading left immediately off of the Breezeway lift and skiing down Outback or Shagnasty. These are two black diamond runs that head through super fun trees before spitting out near Snowburn (a blue rated trail) and the base of the Panorama lift.

Beginner skiers and riders can start on the Panorama lift. From here you can glide down Skywalker, Sleepy Hollow and Glade – all greens, all groomed and all a lot of fun (and scenic!).

Finish your day by giving your legs one last burn on Gunbarrel – This is a steep black diamond run that’s usually full of moguls. Do note, this run can only be accessed via the Pioneer lift and Roundabout (a flat green). Also, if you can, try to hit this one at the end of the day (or before lunch) because it spits you out right near the main parking lot.