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Uphill and Backcountry Access

We welcome all to use Cuchara Mountain Park in the winter, but for your safety and of other park users you MUST agree to, follow, and sign our uphill policy. Anyone going uphill at CMP (ski, snowboard, snowshoe, Nordic, hiking, etc.) is considered an uphill user even if you are only using the park to access USFS land. No sledding on ski runs in CMP.


Cuchara Mountain Park is a great place to "earn your turns" or snowshoe whether you are staying within park boundaries outside of lift operation hours or accessing and exploring USFS land above the park.

Your safety is your responsibility. CMP Ski Patrol is not on duty outside of operating hours. The terrain outside of Cuchara Mountain Park is also not served by Ski Patrol nor is it maintained - and runs outside the park haven't been maintained for over 20 years. Be aware of obstacles, natural or man-made.


Call 911 for all emergencies. If leaving the park, please exit and entry at the marked gates only. You must obey all rules and policies and be aware of other park users and operational equipment and personnel.

Check the avalanche forecast here


Please respect the skin track and do not bootpack the skin track!

Motorized vehicles of any kind are NOT allowed in CMP (authorized operation & maintenance vehicles only) 


Cuchara Mountain Park Winter Uphill Policy 2022/23

ALL UPHILL AND BACKCOUNTRY WINTER USERS ACCESSING THE PARK (backcountry ski, splitboard, snowshoe, Nordic, hiking, etc.) must agree to our uphill policy and wear an access armband.

  • Uphill waivers are FREE, but a donation of $10 is suggested to help maintain and operate Cuchara Mountain Park

  • You MUST wear the provided arm band while skinning (going uphill on skis/splitboard), snowshoeing or hiking



  • Users must stay on designated routes at the designated times when traveling uphill and downhill.

  • Users may encounter over-the-snow machinery and skiers at any time. Uphillers should always strive to be very visible and generally up hill right side of the runs when ascending 

  • A current uphill arm band must always be worn, and the use of lights and reflective clothing must be worn if it is dark outside.

  • Users must adhere to all posted signs and warnings, including all closed signs and ropes, or other closure indicators.


Cuchara Mountain Park reserves the right to modify its Uphill and Foot Traffic Policies at any time and during special events.

Warning: Individuals who skin and snowshoe at a ski area are considered as a skier under the Colorado Skier Safety Act. Individuals who skin and snowshoe at Cuchara Mountain Park assume the risk of any injury to person or property resulting from the inherent dangers and risk of the activity. Cuchara Mountain Park will not be responding to medical emergencies.


If you have an emergency, call 911 and be prepared to give your location and type of emergency. Users should regularly check Colorado Avalanche Information Center (CAIC) reports for current Avalanche conditions.

Non-Operating Days or BEFORE / AFTER winter operational hours, i.e. mornings and evenings

Use any of the open runs in Cuchara Mountain Park for uphill access but stay as far looker’s right as possible. Do not go into closed terrain; please note all on-mountain signage. BE AWARE that mountain operations may be conducted at any time. Uphill access may be restricted for mountain operations or safety reasons.

DURING winter operational hours

See the designated routes on the maps. Uphill access is restricted to this route during operational hours. Always BE AWARE of other park users and mountain operations.


  • Please use a headlamp so our mountain operations team can see you while they work and so you can avoid hitting their equipment or other obstacles.

  • You are considered a skier under the Colorado Skier Safety Act and should know "Your Responsibility Code".

  • The mountain may be closed to uphill access when grooming, snowmaking, race training, or other special activities are taking place.

  • Uphill users are warned that snowmobiles, snowmaking equipment, snow grooming, and other equipment may be encountered at any time on the mountain and you are responsible to stay clear of such equipment.

  • Dogs are allowed outside of CMP operating hours but must be under control at all times. No dogs are allowed on the mountain during operating hours. If, during operating hours, you are taking your dog to access the backcountry, you must keep them on a leash at all times while you are within CMP boundaries and are limited to the far lookers right on CMP. Please clean up after your dog.

  • Users accessing the mountain outside of normal operating hours do so at their own risk. Operational conditions may be variable including, but not limited to; closures due to  grooming operations, unfinished grooming activities, unmitigated avalanche hazards and limited visibility. Use extra caution!

Skin Track Etiquette   

  • Please respect your fellow park and public land users

  • Communicate with other parties

  • Fill in your snow pits

  • Don't bootpack in the skintrack

  • Don't pee in the skintrack

  • Keep the descent in mind

  • Pass with respect

  • Leave no trace

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