Skier safety is of the utmost importance at Copper Mountain. We allow traditional alpine skiing, snowboarders, telemark skiers or cross-country skiers and adaptive skiers with specialized equipment. In the interest of safety there are devices that are not allowed at Copper. Before you finalize your plans to visit Copper Mountain, please review our Allowable Devices.
Ski Patrol Direct Phone Number - 970.968.3311
Click on the images below to learn more about Copper's Safety Tips.
Be aware of trees at all times when skiing or riding. During the early season, snow can be minimal in places, especially in heavily wooded areas. It is recommended to move cautiously through these areas. A tree well is a void or depression that forms around the base of a tree can and contain a mix of low hanging branches, loose snow and air. Evergreen trees in particular (fir, hemlock, etc.) can have large, deep tree wells that form when low hanging branches block snow from filling in and consolidating around the base of the tree. These voids can be hidden from view by the tree's low hanging branches.
2. Avalanche Terrain
Despite Copper's thorough avalanche mitigation efforts, avalanches can still happen in the high alpine environment within the ski area. Educate yourself, have a plan and practice safe travel techniques to ensure your safety while skiing or riding in avalanche terrain. In the event of an avalanche, alert ski patrol immediately.
3. Variable Conditions
Keep an eye out for rocks, stumps, roots and other hazards on the trail at all times. Trail conditions on the mountain can and do change constantly so it is important to remain aware of your surroundings at all times.
Be aware of the difference between groomed versus ungroomed terrain. When terrain is groomed, it will be more even in texture similar to “corduroy” while ungroomed terrain can be more variable which can include bumps, grooves and inconsistencies. Partial grooming can occur where all of these textures can be encountered.
Skiers and riders should know the difference between green, blue, black and extreme terrain. Green terrain is considered the easier terrain on the mountain. Blue is rated as more difficult. Black rated trails are deemed most difficult and should be reserved for those at an advanced level. Extreme rated terrain should be skied or ridden by experts only.
Weather can affect snow surfaces greatly. As temperatures vary drastically during the spring months, different hazards can present themselves that guests should be aware of when skiing or riding. The sun can change snow surfaces between the morning and afternoon hours that can cause a drastic difference in conditions. The following morning those runs will be firm until the sun or temperature can warm the snow again.
Sport a Skid Lid
Helmet usage is on the rise and if you’re not wearing yours, it’s time to look at protecting your noggin. NSAA & Copper Mountain urges all skiers and riders to wear a helmet. Remember to always stay in control as helmets alone will not keep you from harm. Skiing and riding in a controlled and responsible manner are important safety considerations for everyone. If you forgot your lid, you can pick one up at Copper Sports.
Go Wet Yourself
That fatigue and ache you experience during lunch may not be from a great morning of skiing or riding, but actually may be a result of dehydration. Often people confuse the symptoms of dehydration with altitude sickness. At moderately high altitudes, dehydration is responsible for more illness than oxygen insufficiency. Avoid this bummer and drink lots of water!
As with many sports, skiing and riding pose risks. Ski with a buddy as they can help you out of a jam and if necessary, call ski patrol – Your Buddy’s Got Your Back.
Protect Your Grill
Only you can prevent collisions! Always stay in control, and be able to stop or avoid other people or objects. People ahead of you have the right of way and it is your responsibility to avoid them. You must not stop where you obstruct a trail or are not visible from above. When starting downhill or merging into a trail, LOOK UPHILL and yield to others. And remember to exchange name and address if you are involved in a collision resulting in injuries to either party.
Stick to Your Seat
Make sure to sit all the way back in your lift seat and lower safety bar. This will help to ensure your safe arrival at the top.
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You may have spotted Elkguin around Copper, slipping and sliding all over. He’s always dressed to impress in his tuxedo that keeps him snuggled up and warm all winter long. Elkguin loves to give himself a lot of space between other critters and when sliding onto a new trail, looks uphill to protect his beaked grill. You’ll see him to sliding on his tummy rather than on skis, because he thinks it’s a lot more fun. Since he is half elk and half penguin, he can navigate the woods very well with his elk sense – watch out!
Bearilla is a bear and a gorilla. You can catch him shredding it up all over the mountain, using his big gorilla arms to push him down the hill at supersonic speeds when he’s not on a SLOW trail. He likes to eat bananas, mostly chocolate covered frozen ones, but you’ll only catch him in the spring time – Bearilla hibernates in the dead of winter right off of the trail High Point.
A blend of rocky mountain squirrel and pacific seal, Squeal’s super slippery seal body is just too slick so you can find him at the Tubing Hill tubing down the lanes all day long. He’s a professional snow tuber competing in slalom tubing competitions around the world, and of course at Copper Mountain. He’s a gregarious kinda fellow and likes to practice bromance, and tube with a buddy. You can also find Squeal in the Athletic Club’s hot tub floating around with his buddies in his tube after a long day.
Helmet-clad Alliroo uses his super strong kangaroo legs to bounce all over the hill and to keep his heavy alligator head above snow!. He especially likes to go into the Woodward Copper Barn and get his mega bounce on the Super Tramp. He likes to keep his season pass and all of his must-haves like tissues and sunscreen, water, chap stick and his emergency contact information in case he is separated from his mama and papa alliro in his big pouch. His alligator skin keeps him nice and dry, even on the snowiest of days at Copper.
Cheetaphant has a super sharp memory and super-fast speed considering the elephant in him slows down the cheetah in him. If you can keep up with him, he may be able to tell you all about the history of Copper Mountain. Sometimes when Cheetaphant is going too fast, he needs to expand his ears to slow down, move his heavy head on a swivel and use his cat-like reflexes to avoid other critters below him. Look out for him on his favorite trails near the Timberline lift.
When out of the water, ducktapus uses his big beak and octopus feathered arms to grab hold of the carousel at Critterland next to the Super Bee lift. When ductapus has free time, you’ll find him in the terrain parks, riding boxes, rails and table tops. He is always very Park Smart and starts small, makes a plan, looks out for other critters, respects his riparian mates and takes it easy. Look for him to give you a high feathered five at the carousal or the top of a terrain park.
Copper’s Union Creek High Speed Quad Lift at West Village is Copper’s base to the majority of beginner (green) trails. Our “Lift Safety” initiative is directed at all beginner skier and riders to help with safe loading, riding and unloading a lift. These important safety tips are presented by Critters from Copper’s Critter land. These fun Safety Tips are found at the bottom of all beginner lifts and in Copper’s “School House” (kids ski school center). Remember to always ask a Copper Lift Attendant for any additional assistance or guidance, they are there to help.
All skiers and riders must know how to load, ride and unload the lift safely. All guests must wear skis, a snowboard, or one of the allowed equipment listed on our website. Please also note that children in backpacks are not permitted on Copper Mountain chairlifts or ski trails.
Under Colorado law, you cannot board a lift unless you have sufficient physical dexterity, ability and knowledge to negotiate or to use such lift safely or until you have asked for and received information sufficient to enable you to use the lift safely. If you need special assistance, please communicate with our Lift Operations personnel. Better yet, take a ski lesson to improve your ski/riding and lift loading skills. You may not use a lift or any ski trail when under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
In addition to the video below, here are two additional videos to provide information on how to properly ride, load, and unload from the lifts with kids.
Families have a special spot Copper. You will see on the Copper Mountain Trail map that we have specifically identified ski runs that are Slow & Family Zones. These tend to be more gentle slopes for slow family skiing. Additionally, we have identified Slow Zones in some higher traffic areas, and where approaching a busy intersection of trails or nearing lift-loading areas where slower speeds make a safer experience. Please observe the posted slow areas by maintaining a speed no faster than the general flow of traffic. Space and speed are especially important in these areas. Fast and aggressive skiing will not be tolerated and may result in the loss of lift access privileges.
Skiers and riders should be advised that a green circle, blue square, or black diamond trail at Copper Mountain is not necessarily the same as a green circle, blue square or black diamond trail at other resorts. The system is a relative rating of trails at each resort and does not compare trail difficulty between resorts. Skiers and riders should begin with the easiest terrain and then move up in difficulty as their ability permits.
use extreme caution
Extreme Terrain contains cliffs, very steep slopes as well as rocks and other hazards. Skiing or boarding Extreme Terrain is for EXPERTS ONLY and marked with this symbol.
Skiing and snowboarding off the groomed runs and in deep powder is one of the most exciting and appealing parts of the sport. However, if you decide to leave the groomed trails you are voluntarily accepting the risk of a deep snow immersion accident. A deep snow or tree well immersion accident occurs when a skier or rider falls into an area of deep unconsolidated snow and becomes immobilized and suffocates. Deaths resulting from these kinds of accidents are referred to as a NARSID or Non-Avalanche Related Snow Immersion Death.
Become educated on how to reduce the risk of NARSID through your own action and awareness. The website www.deepsnowsafety.org is intended to assist all skiers and riders in learning about the risks and prevention of deep snow immersion accidents
Pursuant to the Colorado Ski Safety Act, the ski area assumes no responsibility for skiers going beyond the ski area boundary. Areas beyond the ski area boundary are not patrolled or maintained. Avalanches, unmarked obstacles and other natural hazards exist. Be aware: the backcountry avalanche hazard may be extreme. Rescue in the backcountry, if available, is the responsibility of the Summit County Sheriff. It will be costly, may take time. For current local weather and avalanche conditions, contact the Colorado Avalanched Information Center hotline sponsored by the Summit County Sheriff’s Office at 970.668.0600. BE ADVISED. BE SAFE.
At Copper we have a number of terrain parks for your enjoyment. The parks are identified as having Small, Medium and Large Features. Start small and work your way up. If you would like some professional instruction visit Woodward At Copper for specially designed classes and coaching where progression is the focus. Copper reinforces Park Smart approach for our terrain park users:
FREESTYLE TERRAIN WARNINGS & INSTRUCTIONS:
*Each feature can be broken down into 4 zones. Identify these zones and have a plan before using any Freestyle Terrain.
Approach zone is the space for setting your speed and stance to use the feature.
Takeoff zone is for making moves that start your trick.
Maneuver zone is for controlling your body in the air and setting up for landing.
Landing zone is the prepared slope between the knuckle and the runout beyond it.
Copper Mountain Resort has partnered with The Breckenridge Outdoor Education Center (BOEC) to offer training and education to Copper guests having special needs. The BOEC is a national leader in outdoor adventure education serving all people, while ensuring that the outdoors is accessible to those with disabilities and special needs. Adaptive alpine skiing is all about meeting the needs of each individual through specialized equipment and teaching methods. Coaches are selected based on the student's specific disability and skiing experience. The BOEC will provide coaches and if needed equipment for your training needs. Please plan ahead and contact the BOEC before you arrive at Copper to make the necessary arrangements. You may contact The BOEC at (970) 453-6422 and additional information can be found on their website at www.boec.org/
Copper Mountain Resort has determined that the use of any power driven equipment or vehicles by the public, including other power-driven mobility equipment used by disabled persons, would conflict with orders from the United States Forest Service and would also conflict with Copper’s safety requirements necessary for the reasonably safe operation of our on-slope activities. These safety concerns include the use of equipment on the slopes that expose the user and skiers/snowboarders to a safety hazard; collisions with downhill skiers and snowboarders; and the use of equipment that may provide access into closed areas that pose avalanche hazards. These safety concerns are compounded by our facility’s high volume of trail use. These safety requirements are based on actual risks and are not intended to be discriminatory in any way.
Out of safety concerns for guests, employees, and resort property, as well as concerns for individual privacy, Copper Mountain Resort prohibits the operation or use of unmanned aerial systems, or drones, by anyone including recreational users and hobbyists – without the prior written authorization from the resort. This prohibition includes drones used for filming or videotaping, as well as any drone use by media or journalists operating above or within Copper Mountain Resort boundaries. Examples of specific hazards include the danger to operating chairlifts and interference with medical evacuation helicopters. This prohibition on drone operations or use extends to any drones launched or operated from resort property, as well as drones launched from private property outside of the resort boundaries which may then enter the airspace above the resort. Please contact our risk manager at 970-471-5935 if you have any questions or if you seek prior authorization to operate any aerial drones. Any authorized operation of aerial drones may be governed by Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) rules and regulations, local law enforcement, and / or U.S. Forest Service rules, as well as those policies separately established by this Resort. Any violation of this policy may involve suspension of your resort access privileges to include the revocation of your ticket or season pass and could include permanent denial of access to resort. The unauthorized use of any drone equipment may subject violators to any damages, including, but not limited to, damages for violations of privacy and/or physical or personal injuries or property damage, as well as regulatory fines and legal fees.
Please be advised that uphill access (meaning skinning, hiking, snowshoeing up the mountain) is closed during early-season racing and snowmaking operations. Ski Patrol will communicate when Uphill Access will open for the season.
The Copper Mountain Ski Patrol consist of full time and volunteer members who work together to provide efficient, professional emergency response to guests at Copper Mountain. Patrollers’ primary focus is on mountain safety. Assisting the ski patrol is the Mountain Safety Patrol who works with the ski patrol to ensure guest safety. Rounding out the team is Copper Mountain’s well-trained avalanche dogs. In the event of an on-hill incident or emergency, call Copper Mountain ski patrol at 970-968-3311.
The clinic is located in Center Village, at 860 Copper Road 970-968-2330. During the winter season clinic hours are open daily: 8:30am-4:30pm. The Clinic is staffed by physicians, nurses and x-ray technicians. This facility offers guests and employees of Copper Mountain a direct link and a seamless experience to advanced medical services. St. Anthony Copper Mountain Clinic, a Centura Health Facility, is independent of Copper Mountain Resort.
Copper Mountain encourages all guests to wear a helmet. While helmets may mitigate or reduce the severity of some head injuries, their use does not guarantee safety and will not prevent certain injuries. Regardless of whether or not you choose to wear a helmet, every winter sport participant shares responsibility for his or her safety and for that of others using the ski area facilities. The National Ski Area Association emphasis the importance of helmets and has partnered with the "Lids on Kids" organization. For more information please visit www.lidsonkids.org to find out how to find the best helmet for your child.
Skier safety is of the utmost importance to Copper Mountain. On the Mountain, we allow traditional alpine skiing, snowboarders, telemark skiers or cross-country skiers and adaptive skiers with specialized equipment. In the interest of guest safety there are some types of equipment that are not allowed at Copper. Before you finalize your plans to visit Copper Mountain, be sure to review and understand what are Allowable Equipment at Copper.
Always show courtesy and respect to others and be aware that there are elements of risk in skiing and snowboarding. Common sense and maintaining an awareness of your surroundings will help minimize the risk. Know your ability level and stay within it. Know and follow “Your Responsibility Code” as well as ParkSmart and share with other skiers the responsibility for a great skiing/riding experience.
YOUR RESPONSIBILITY CODE:
Be advised that Copper Mountain does not mark all potential obstacles or hazards. When marked, poles, flags, fencing, signage, padding or other forms of marking are used to inform the skier/rider of the location of a potential obstacle or hazard. These markers are no guarantee of your safety. It is part of your responsibility under “Your Responsibility Code” and the Colorado Ski Safety Act to avoid all obstacles and hazards.
The Colorado legislature, recognizing risks that are inherent in the sport, has passed the Colorado Ski Safety Act, which provides inherent risks of the sport and relative responsibilities of the skier; and the ski area. You must obey the Act. Under the Act, any person using the facilities of a ski area is considered a skier. A summary of the inherent risks is listed below:
Under Colorado law, a skier assumes the risk of any injury to person or property resulting from any of the inherent dangers and risks of skiing and may not recover from any ski area operator for any injury resulting from any of the inherent dangers and risks of skiing, including but not limited to: changing weather conditions; existing and changing snow conditions; bare spots; rocks; stumps; trees; collisions with natural objects, man-made objects, or other skiers; variations in terrain, whether natural or as a result of slope design; freestyle and extreme terrain; jumps; snowmaking or grooming operations; and the failure of skiers to ski within their own abilities. AVALANCHES may occur at any time, both inside and outside of the posted ski area boundary, WITHOUT WARNING. Become educated on how to reduce the risks through your own actions and awareness. Contact the Copper Mountain Ski Patrol or visit www.avalanche.org.
CAUTION: Snowcats, snowmobiles and snowmaking and other equipment may be encountered at any time, it is your responsibility to stay clear of this equipment.
Considering Copper has many visitors from out of state that may not be aware of the new Colorado Marijuana Law “Amendment 64” and Copper’s Liquor Licenses, we have summarized this information in the following.
With the recent passing of Amendment 64 in Colorado, as well as drugs/alcohol in general, please keep in mind that marijuana is still considered a Schedule I Controlled Substance under federal law, and due to our US Forest Service Contract, we are held to their regulations/expectations as part of our contract. This policy applies to all of Copper Mountain including on-mountain and in the village.
Highlights of Amendment 64: