sunlight mountain indy pass
The trail map for Sunlight Mountain Resort, the latest Indy Pass addition; (image courtesy/skimap.org)

First Colorado Mountain Joins ‘Indy Pass’ to Rival Ikon, Epic

The Indy Pass gives skiers and riders in North America and Japan a homegrown alternative to the Ikon and Epic circuits. This year, it added its first Colorado resort to its ever-growing list of mom-and-pop mountains.

Sunlight Mountain Resort in Glenwood Springs, Colo., just became the newest stop on the Indy Pass circuit. It joins unaffiliated ski areas throughout the United States, plus a handful in Canada and Japan, on the list.

The pass now consolidates 82 independently owned ski resorts off the beaten path. Skiers can buy in for two visits per year at all 82 locations for $329 (adult price).

Looking over the locations and considering the utility, the pass looks ideal for anyone interested in touring the United States to ski inbounds at low-key spots — on a shoestring budget.

While Epic and Ikon tend to leave a big, blank spot in the middle of the map, Indy Pass fills it in with multiple Midwest stops from Michigan to Iowa.

Sunlight Mountain and the Small Resorts of Indy Pass

Sunlight Mountain comprises 72 trails on three lifts over 2,100 vertical feet.

Recently, the small resort hosted the Western Winter Games for Special Olympics Colorado. More than 150 athletes competed in the games on Friday, Feb. 11.

It joins a loose network of participating small Rocky Mountain and intermountain resorts. These include Utah’s Beaver Mountain, Montana’s Blacktail Mountain, and British Columbia’s Apex Mountain.

Each has several lifts and around 2,000 feet of vert. The pass also includes locales like Sovereign Lake, British Columbia, which serves nordic skiers and snowskaters on 33 miles of terrain.

Indy Pass markets itself on the premise of smaller crowds, cheaper days, and bedrock indie vibes. For now, another key selling point is that you can still buy one for the 2021-2022 season. Saturday, Feb. 19 is the last day to jump on the Indy Pass bandwagon.

To bypass blackout dates, pay $429. For kids’ passes, pay $139. And don’t forget to check out all the Indy Pass stops.

Backcountry Winter Ski Lifestyle2
New Runs, On-Site Camping: Bluebird Backcountry Ready for Best Season Yet
Bluebird Backcountry consolidates and manages 1,200 acres of backcountry skiing. Camp on-site, ski with your dog, and more. Read more…

Sam Anderson
By

Sam has roamed the American continent to follow adventures, explore natural wonders, and find good stories. After going to college to be a writer, he got distracted (or saved) by rock climbing and spent most of the next decade on the road, supporting himself with trade work. He's had addresses in the Adirondack Mountains, Las Vegas, and somehow Kansas, but his heart belongs in the Texas hill country.