People used skis to get around Colorado long before the land became a state in 1876. The Colorado Snowsports Museum says their first documented use was in the winter of 1859.

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While Colorado's Winter Park Ski Area wasn't opened until 1940, it's generally considered the first large ski area in the Centennial State. The designation of Colorado's oldest ski area belongs to a different location a little further north.

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Where is Colorado's Oldest Ski Area

Located in Steamboat Springs, Colorado's oldest ski area opened one year after the first Steamboat Springs Winter Carnival in 1914. Howelsen Hill Ski Area opened in 1915. It remains one of Colorado's most family-friendly ski areas and the training ground for more than 90 Olympic athletes who started here in Colorado.

Howelsen Ski Hill is part of a city park that is operated by the city of Steamboat Springs.

Who Was Carl Howelsen?

The man who helped design Howelsen Hill Ski Area was a Norwegian immigrant who arrived in Steamboat in 1913. Carl Howelsen came to America in 1905 and joined the Barnum and Bailey’s Circus. In Norway, Howelsen won several medals in the Holmenkollen ski festival competing in Nordic events, which may have made him the perfect person to build the ski area we all know and love in Steamboat Springs.

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One of Colorado's Most Affordable Ski Areas

How many ski areas have a "ski-free" day every Sunday? How many ski areas will let you ski under the stars at night for $15? How many sell a lift ticket for around $30? There is a love for winter sports in Steamboat Springs, and the people who have grown up around Howelsen Hill Ski Area love sharing it with the next generation of Coloradans who want to learn to ski.

Colorado's Oldest Ski Area: 10 Cool Facts

Colorado's oldest continuously running ski has been open to the public since 1915. Check out ten cool facts about one of Colorado's best ski areas, which has helped produce over 90 Olympic athletes through the years.

MORE: Colorado Boasts Some of the Longest Ski Runs in North America

These Colorado ski runs are some of the longest anywhere in North America.

MORE: Be the New Owner Who Revives This Forgotten Colorado Ski Resort

Have you ever wanted to own your own Colorado Ski Resort? Maybe you just wanted to win the Powerball jackpot so you could buy your own mountain. Here comes an opportunity to do both.
We're headed to Idaho Springs, Colorado to check out a property that was once a Colorado ski resort, and could be yet again.

Gallery Credit: Wesley Adams

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