For the last several years, we have tried to incorporate more experiences as holiday gifts for our kids than toys that they will play with a few times and then throw away. We try to have Santa give them a trip or experience each year for Christmas. Last year our kids tried skiing for the first time and absolutely loved it – they talked about it all year! This year we had the opportunity to be hosted by Angel Fire Resort in Angel Fire, New Mexico and were thrilled to visit for our winter vacation!! Angel Fire is about a 14 hour drive from League City, so not too bad but we decided to break the drive up over 2 days (Amarillo was a great place to stop and refuel as then it was only about a 4 hour drive the second day).
For accommodations, Angel Fire Resort has both a beautiful lodge right at the base of the mountain with hotel room type accommodations but also has quite a few options for condos and townhouses. We stayed in a townhouse at the Sun Lodge (one of the properties nearby that is operated by Angel Fire Resort) in a two bedroom townhouse and couldn’t have been happier! Sun Lodge has TONS of storage – including a whole sun room that you could lay out your wet ski clothes in and a specially built closet right at the door to hold skis, boots, etc. We loved that we had a washer and dryer (packing winter stuff for 5 people can be a little daunting) and a fully equipped kitchen where we could cook our meals (which helps a ton with saving money!). Plus there is nothing like coming home to some great soup in the Crockpot after a day of playing in the snow and skiing. It was also nice to have some cozy nights playing games with family friends that also happened to be in the area. Another feature I loved (and don’t get enough of in Texas) -our townhouse had a fireplace in the living room and another one in the master bedroom!
We were super impressed with the shuttle system around the entire resort. While we were not staying right at the lodge which would have been I think easier to ski in and out, we did have a shuttle stop right in our Sun Lodge parking lot. All you had to do was call the number and a shuttle was usually there within 5 minutes!
But now for the skiing! Our family really runs the spectrum on skiing abilities. I have skied since I was in high school, but still only enjoy the Beginner or “Green” slopes. I don’t like to go fast, or straight downhill – I’m more slow and steady and hate to fall. My husband, on the other hand enjoys more of the harder Intermediate or “Blue” trails and sometimes Expert “Black” trails. And my kids – well they are fearless but still learning! Angel Fire Mountain has the perfect blend to keep everyone happy and entertained. The mountain has 80 trails with 21% being Beginner, 56% Intermediate, and 23% Advanced. I loved that there were Beginner trails that started all the way at the top of the mountain down to the Base. Another plus was that there are slopes on both the front and back side of the mountain – for all abilities.
The staff at Angel Fire was also spectacular and helpful. The rental shop folks were super nice as well as the lift operators. It was particularly windy during our stay, and there were a few times that they had to even shut down the Quad Lift – Chile Express due to wind. When this happened, they brought in extra shuttles to bring guests to the back side of the mountain where the wind was not so bad.
Since this was only the second skiing trip for my kids, we decided that Ski School would be a great refresher for their first day on the Mountain. My older two had skied last year, but my youngest had done Strider bikes so this was his first year on skis. We couldn’t have been more impressed with the Angel Fire Ski School. There were plenty of instructors so each child was able to get the attention that they needed! By the end of the day, the older two kids were going on Intermediate slopes and my youngest was a lot more comfortable on the mountain! I also loved that they gave us a progress report on all of their skills and they even got little award stickers for the milestones they reached!
I love that Angel Fire Resort helped to encourage our family’s quest for adventure and that the kids got outside and away from the video games to have some winter fun! Check out what my daughter did on her last day at Angel Fire – she’s much more brave than her mama!
Wondering if there are other things to do besides skiing (and snowboarding)? If your family needs a break…. the resort does have feature several restaurants (great Mexican restaurant right at the base of the Chile Express) as will a six lane tubing hill (be sure to make reservations – cost is $25 per person for one hour). Or, especially for us Texans – just enjoy some snow time and make a snow angel or build a snowman (or “snow octopus” like Chase and I did).
In all, we had a blast and highly recommend visiting Angel Fire Resort. This winter the slopes will only be open until March 24th, but there is also summer fun to be had at Angel Fire! They have everything from biking, hiking, zip lining, disc golf, scenic chair rides, and golfing! It’s such a beautiful area, I encourage you to look into planning a trip any time of the year!
Read More Macaroni Kid’s Blogs