An ode to Peak 9 … the perfect pitch
Peak 9 is a sanctuary in many ways. For experts, it offers easy access to some of Breckenridge’s steepest, most challenging terrain (E Chair) and hiking access to pristine, untouched turns through glades in The Back 9. For skiers and snowboarders of all ability levels, it always feels like there is enough space on Peak 9 to call your own. For those new to the sport, Peak 9 really comes through, offering what is arguably the most ideal learning terrain anywhere.
While some might refer to a few of Peak 9’s groomed trails as “flat,” for beginners, they are wide, white blankets of welcoming velvet. Peak 9 is home to not one but two ski schools, including the ski and ride moving carpets that allow first timers seamless travel a short distance up the base slope to get the feel of their skis or board. In some places, this area would be referred to as “the bunny hill,” but Breck tenderly dubs it “Camelback Platter,” which suits its status as a broad, snowy floor rather than a hill. Once a comfort level is established on the skis or board – learning how to stop and make turns – the Quicksilver SuperChair lift is the next step into the foray of skiing or snowboarding. The cushy six-seater is fast en route but slow and seamless to load and unload. It delivers passengers halfway up the mountain into a nest of wide, gentle green runs, all smooth, easy and meticulously groomed. The woods between these runs are favorite exploration areas for kids. On either side of Silverthorne run, you’ll find Ripperoo’s Forest (named after Breck’s dog mascot, who frequents Peak 9) and Haunted Forest, both full of easy-to-navigate tree trails and hidden surprises.
While Peak 9 offers the most inviting, most non-intimidating slopes to learn on, if you are a first-time skier or snowboarder, the best type of schooling you’ll get is in a lesson. Both of Peak 9’s ski schools offer group and private lessons for every level and age group of skiers and snowboarders.
Speaking of levels, if you are a sound intermediate to expert skier or rider, Peak 9 has a few other bonus features to help you take your skills to the next level. Watching the pros pull off 1080s in the mass Freeway Terrain Park and Pipe on Peak 8 might seem utterly unattainable, but even the pros work their way up from smaller jumps, tables and rails, which is what you’ll find at Highway 9 Terrain Park between the Mercury and Beaver Run chairlifts.
Lastly, if keeping your feet on the ground and going as fast as possible is more your jam, Peak 9 is also home to the Epic Mix Race Course on Sundown run, where you can go neck and neck against your companions and fellow skiers/snowboarders in the starting gate, but also try to beat your own speed and that of anyone else you know, tracking your times online at Epic Mix.
Sporting the perfect pitch is just the beginning of Peak 9’s many perks. Think of it as the best place to learn but also to ramp up your game.