Crested Butte Access

Airports Near Aspen, Colorado

jet_slopesWhile Denver International Airport is Colorado’s largest airport and is generally the easiest and cheapest to fly into, it is a four-hour mountain drive to Aspen, and even farther from the western ski resorts of Telluride and Durango. Colorado High Country has a variety of airports that are closer to its world-class ski resorts, allowing for more direct, quicker travel.

The Aspen/Pitkin County Airport ( is Aspen’s regional airport, just five minutes from the resort area. Take a morning flight and be skiing by afternoon. Two airlines service the airport: United Express, operated by SkyWest, and Republic, operated by Frontier. Direct flights are available from cities including Denver, Los Angeles and Chicago.

While Aspen/Pitkin County Airport is the most convenient airport to Aspen travel, there are other airports in the surrounding ski country that are much closer to Aspen than Denver. Further, so long as you don’t mind car travel, these airports will allow you to piece together trips with other famous Colorado ski resorts. Eagle County Regional Airport ( is about an hour and a half north of Aspen and is located conveniently to Vail and Beaver Creek. To the south, Gunnison airport ( is not much closer than Denver, but would allow you to combine a trip to Crested Butte, one of Colorado’s most challenging ski areas, with a trip to Aspen.

Colorado Ski Resorts Subsidize Airline Costs

Colorado ski resorts are paying more to airlines for consistent flights into regional mountain airports.

Airlines say they need the subsidies because of rising fuel prices and financially strapped vacationers.

The Telluride Tourism Board is helping Crested Butte Mountain Resort with a $650,000 revenue-guarantee deal with Allegiant Air to bring twice-weekly flights from Oakland and Phoenix to Montrose all winter.

According to the Denver Post, Steamboat, Crested Butte and Vail are also paying more to airlines for consistent flights.

New Joint Ski Pass Between Crested Butte, Telluride

Winter is on its way and so are some new ticket deals that offer days in both Telluride and Crested Butte — with no blackout dates.

A new pass called the Ultimate 6 Pass offers up to three days in Telluride and three in Crested Butte. The pass has been put together as a promotional effort between Telluride Ski & Golf and the Crested Butte Mountain Resort. The pass is only available in limited numbers, and though the exact number of passes has not been released, they are available now for $399 at Liftopia.

“Basically it’s stemming from Crested Butte participating with the Telluride Montrose Regional Air Organization,” said Telski Communications Director Tom Watkinson. “It’s helping to bring people to both resorts, and this is a great way to do that.”

The Crested Butte Mountain Resort announced in late October that it will be a private supporter of the TMRAO, namely the organization’s newest airline, Allegiant. As part of the deal, marketing efforts would be aimed at air passengers focusing on Telluride as well as Crested Butte.

Watkinson said the pass also offers a 20 percent discount on tickets at either resort if someone wants to go over the three days offered.

Telluride and Crested Butte are roughly 158 miles apart by road, with Montrose between them.

While the Ultimate 6 Pass is a good deal to hit up both resorts, Telski and Crested Butte are also offering their season pass holders a half-price deal for single-day tickets. If a Crested Butte or Telski season pass holder wants to buy a day ticket at the other resort, they are eligible to get it at half price. However, Watkinson said the half price deal does include some blackout dates, notably around the holidays.

Telski will be selling discount season passes and other passes at the KOTO Ski Swap Saturday at the Wilkinson Public Library.

This year, Telski is also selling a special three-day pass option for those with passes to Powderhorn Mountain Resort near Grand Junction.

“We figure Junction is such a big market for regional skiers, that we’re offering a three-day pass at $169 with the purchase of a Powderhorn pass season,” Watkinson said. “There’s no blackout dates and it’s available immediately.”

Telski plans to open on Thanksgiving.