New Mexico Ski Resorts Ranked & Mapped

Despite New Mexico having the reputation for being an always-warm state, it has a surprising number of ski resorts, most of which are located in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains above Albuquerque.

New Mexico Ski Season

The ski season at the ski resorts of New Mexico, typically runs from mid-December to mid-April, although this can vary depending on the weather conditions.

List of All New Mexico Ski Resorts

Out of the ski resorts in New Mexico, Taos Ski Valley is by far the most popular. It is also a member of both the IKON and Mountain Collective ski passes.

ResortPassLocation
Angel FirePOWDAngel Fire, NM, 87710
PajaritoSanta Fe, NM, 87506
Red RiverRed River, NM, 87558
Sandia PeakCedar Crest, NM, 87008
SipapuVadito, NM, 87579
Ski ApacheAlto, NM, 88312
Ski Santa FeSanta Fe, NM, 87501
Taos Ski ValleyIKON,COLLTaos Ski Valley, NM, 87525

Explaining Our ‘Difficulty Score’

Parks & Trips created a proprietary Difficulty Score that is generated by looking at the number of easy-intermediate-expert slopes by acreage and the maximum vertical drop of the overall resort.

Our algorithm compares each resort’s metrics with all others in North America, then gives each a Difficulty Score, which we use to rank them accordingly. Resorts with a lower score are easier than those with a higher one. However, a high score does not mean that the resort does not have any easy slopes, or vice versa. This is just an overall score given to the resort based on all its metrics grouped together.

The Most Difficult New Mexico Ski Resorts

Taos Ski Valley

Taos Ski Valley is one of the hardest ski areas in the country. It ranks in the top 10% of most-difficult ski resorts in all of North America, mostly due to the fact that it has 70% of its trails rated as expert-level, and a vertical drop of 3,281 feet.

Mountain Stats

Summit:  12,481′
Vertical:  3,281′
Base:  9,200′

Terrain Stats

Trails:  110
Lifts:  14
Acres:  1,294

Trail Breakdown

Beginner:  14%
Intermediate:  16%
Expert:  70%

More Information…

Taos Ski Valley is by far the hardest ski resort in New Mexico. It has the steepest vertical drop and largest number of black diamond trails of any ski resort in the state. It is considered a very difficult ski resort by our metrics.

Ski Santa Fe and Angel Fire both are considered to have average difficulty, both with a very good mix of easy, intermediate and expert trails.

Rank ResortGreen TrailsBlue TrailsBlack TrailsDifficulty ScoreTM
#1Taos Ski Valley14%16%70%83%
#2Ski Santa Fe20%40%40%54%
#3Angel Fire21%56%23%50%
#4Ski Apache20%60%20%48%
#5Pajarito20%50%30%47%

The Easiest Ski Resorts in New Mexico

Sandia Peak is the easiest ski resort in New Mexico, but it is not beginner-level by any means. The only reason it takes the top spot here is because it has less than 10% of its trails rated as expert-level. The rest of the resorts that round out the top five are all around average in difficulty.

Rank ResortGreen TrailsBlue TrailsBlack TrailsDifficulty ScoreTM
#1Sandia Peak35%55%10%38%
#2Red River32%38%30%45%
#3Pajarito20%50%30%47%
#4Sipapu20%40%40%47%
#5Ski Apache20%60%20%48%

The Largest Ski Resorts in New Mexico

Choosing the largest ski resorts is a bit of a tricky proposition. Do you look at just the summit elevation? How about the total acreage, most trails, or steepest vertical drop?

Well, we decided to combine all four of those metrics into one ranking to get the best idea, although we fully admit this is completely subjective. We’ve given you all the data in the following table to make your own decision.

Taos Ski Valley is not only the most difficult ski resort, but also the largest. It has the highest summit, steepest vertical (by over 1,200 ft!), the most trails, and the most skiable acreage. Ski Apache is also a fairly large ski resort, but it pales in comparison to the sheer size of Taos.

Rank ResortSummit ElevationBase ElevationVertical DropAcresTrails
#1Taos Ski Valley12,481 ft9,200 ft3,281 ft1,294110
#2Ski Apache12,000 ft10,100 ft1,900 ft75055
#3Angel Fire10,677 ft8,600 ft2,077 ft56081
#4Ski Santa Fe12,075 ft10,350 ft1,725 ft66086
#5Sandia Peak10,378 ft8,678 ft1,700 ft20030
Author Image
Chris Cagle

I love traveling the United States. I hunt down fantastic places to visit in the summer and great slopes to ski down in the winter. The first national park I ever visited was the Smokies, but since then, I've been to dozens. However, my favorite by far has been Zion.