If you want to ski in Colorado, here's an insiders tip: You need to buy your pass before Labor Day.
Longtime residents remember Labor Day weekend as Sniagrab weekend, when Gart Bros. would have its big ski sale (Sniagrab is Bargains spelled backwards). Sniagrab sold ski gear inside the big Gart Bros. store downtown, while ski resorts would sell passes outside on the sidewalk.
While Gart Bros. is now gone, two other stores have continued the Labor Day weekend sale tradition: Christy Sports has PowderDaze and Epic Mountain Gear has their Ski Rex sale.
Ski Rex has been going on, in one form or another, since 2002.
Ski Rex starts Friday, Aug. 30 and promises to sell gear at up to 60 percent off. Check out this website to get in one day early, on Thursday, and get a coupon for $50 off a $300 purchase.
PowderDaze is already underway and promises deals up to 70 percent off.
So let's look at pass deals and where you can buy them:
Whether you're skiing one day, or the whole season, buy your Epic Passbefore Sept. 2 to get the best price. One-day passes are $125 for adults. The Epic local pass is $699 and give you unlimited access to Keystone, Breckenridge and Crested Butte, 10 days at Vail and Beaver Creek and more. Learn more here.
The Ikon Pass is for people who ski Winter Park, Steamboat, Copper or Eldora in Colorado. Prices start at $749 for a season pass to all four resorts, plus more than 30 others, with blackout dates. Learn more here. Steamboat has a three-day pass starting at $169, otherwise you have to step up to the IKON season pass for $749. (Get the Steamboat three-day pass for $159 at Christy Sports in Denver this weekend.) Winter Park has a season passfor $499.
Aspen's super-early pricing ends Sept. 13. Prices start at $1,089 for a season pass. Or get access through the Ikon Pass. Learn more here.
Loveland has season passes for $439 and four-packs for $169. Or buy the four-pack at certain shows and save $10.
A Basin passes start at $449 for the season or a four-pack for $239. Learn more here.
A Basin has a five-pass deal at Christy Sports in Denver this weekend for $199.
Copper Mountain season passes start at $549 and include three days at Monarch and three days at Purgatory. Prices end Sept. 9. Copper will also offer a five-day pass for $249 this weekend at Christy Sports in Demver.
Kids Free Pass Deals
There are two free pass deals for kids.
Colorado Ski Country has a pass for 5th graders that gives kids three days of free lift tickets at 22 ski resorts in Colorado. Learn more here.
Vail Resorts offers the Epic SchoolKids Pass to kids in kindergarten through 5th grade. It gives those kids four free days of lift tickets at Vail, Beaver Creek, Keystone, Breckenridge and Crested Butte. Learn more here.
If you see a deal we should include, email me: Deb.Stanley@kmgh.com and find more deals on my Facebook page.