Since 2000, Mountain Capital Partners has provided management services to our family of ski resorts, including overseeing the investment of over $75 million in on-mountain improvements. Keep reading to discover some of the meaningful impacts we've made in our pursuit to Give People the Freedom to Ski.
Sipapu Ski & Summer Resort
Just 20 miles southeast of Taos, New Mexico, Sipapu has been home to ski trips, year-round reunions and family-friendly, family fun since 1952. Shortly after MCP’s involvement in 2000, Sipapu doubled its skiable terrain, added four new lifts and replaced one. Creating legendary tree skiing has been a high focus for the team, in addition to evolving the snowmaking infrastructure, which has allowed Sipapu to be the first ski area open in New Mexico nearly every winter for two decades. Projects have also included expanded terrain, lodging renovations and a major remodel of Sipapu’s historic lodge - and all have contributed to Sipapu’s unique status as the fastest growing resort in the state.
Located in the rugged San Juan Mountains just north of Durango, Colorado, Purgatory is a year-round resort that offers a unique blend of steep tree skiing trails and wide-open cruisers with stunning views. MCP’s first order of business in 2015 was to return the resort to its original name, much to the delight of locals and guests alike. Since then, the improvements haven’t stopped, including the replacement of the classic Legends lift 8, a new high-speed detachable quad, adding new surface lifts on the backside and beginner areas, constructing the Inferno Mountain Coaster, building additional ski and bike trails and several snowmaking expansions.
Purgatory Snowcat Adventures
Headquartered at Purgatory Resort, Purgatory Snowcat Adventures runs the largest cat skiing operation in Colorado, with 35,000 acres of backcountry terrain outside of the resort boundaries. Since MCP’s involvement starting in 2015, the operation has upgraded its snowcat cabins while adding new product offerings, including scenic snowcat tours and snowcat dinner excursions.
Year-round resort Arizona Snowbowl is home to the state’s only gondola, located minutes from downtown Flagstaff and two hours north of Phoenix. MCP’s work began immediately in 2016 with the installation of the new Humphreys Peak Quad, the ski area’s first new lift in three decades. Immediately thereafter, Snowbowl debuted Arizona’s first high-speed six-person lift, the Grand Canyon Express, and in 2017, MCP oversaw the installation of a new fixed grip quad chairlift and surface lift in the Hart Prairie beginner area, which features some of the best teaching terrain in the country. In 2020 Snowbowl initiated the largest lift construction project in the nation, and the Arizona Gondola opened in December that same year. Throughout these years, Snowbowl has also opened a new restaurant, added a pedestrian overpass, and expanded its world-class snowmaking infrastructure.
Hesperus Ski Area
Just minutes from downtown Durango, Colorado, and a short drive from Mesa Verde National Park, Hesperus is home to the Southwest’s largest night skiing operation. This is the place where everyone feels like a local and home to Marmot Hill, a snow tubing area with multiple lanes of fun at the perfect pitch. Since MCP’s involvement starting in 2016, the ski area has seen several infrastructure improvements, including the expansion and relocation of its tubing hill and the reconfiguration of its rental shop, which included a new fleet of rental gear.
Los Alamos, NM
Perched on the Pajarito Plateau of the Jemez Mountains just 35 miles northwest of Santa Fe, Pajarito is one of the most unspoiled ski areas in the state, thanks in part to its bump runs in the winter (the Fab Four are legendary with the locals) and its rugged single track for lift-served mountain biking in the summer. Since Pajarito joined the MCP family in 2018, the Los Alamos ski area has replaced its beginner lift, upgraded its holding pond and water collection system, and managed the hazard trees that were damaged by recent fires while improving future fire mitigation and forest re-vegetation.
Nordic Valley Resort
Deep in the heart of the Wasatch Mountains just north of Salt Lake City, Nordic Valley is in the middle of the largest expansion projects in resort history. Two years after MCP's involvement in 2018, the resort added Utah’s third high-speed, six person chairlift, Nordic Valley’s first new lift in 20 years. That same year, the resort began building out 300 acres of new skiing, more than tripling its skiable acres. New trails have been added every year since. During the 2002 Winter Olympics, Nordic Valley was a training area for Olympic athletes and it's still sought-after for its renowned after school and ski school programs.
Brian Head, UT
Brian Head Resort
With the highest base elevation in southwest Utah, Brian Head Resort receives nearly 360 inches of The Greatest Snow on Earth® every winter. Located in the southwest corner of Utah and a short drive from Las Vegas, Brian Head made resort history when it posted its earliest-ever opening and became the first resort to open in Utah on November 4, 2022. Since 2020, MCP has helped lead on-mountain improvements, including additional chairs on their newest lift, Navajo Express, gladed trail expansions and enhanced snowmaking. In 2021, Brian Head acquired the nearby Brian Head Lodge to offer destination guests a full resort experience.
Crescent Lake, OR
Willamette Pass Resort
At Willamette Pass Resort, being first is second-nature: the first-ever snowmaking system in the Pacific Northwest was installed here, and Oregon's first high-speed, six-passenger detachable chairlift (also the fastest in the state) debuted at Willamette Pass. Located in the Cascade Mountains of central Oregon and 66 miles southeast of Eugene, Willamette Pass is now carving out a new story for itself - with more "firsts" to come. Since MCP’s involvement in the fall of 2022, the resort has introduced several infrastructure upgrades, including new software and point of sale integrations.
MCP's first international resort, Valle Nevado is located in the Andes mountain range just 37 miles from Santiago, the capital and largest city of Chile. It's the largest ski area in the Americas and boasts the region's highest quality of snow, thanks to the resort's base elevation of 9,925 feet and its annual accumulation of 276 inches. MCP became the majority owner of Valle Nevado in March 2023 and the team is currently investigating adding to Valle Nevado’s 16 lifts, which are considered the most modern lift system in South America.
Las Vegas, NV
Located less than an hour from the Strip, Lee Canyon has provided the Las Vegas and surrounding communities with an important and unique diversion since 1963. Located in the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest, Lee Canyon offers guests year-round outdoor adventure with its 445 acres of lift-served and hiking terrain, 27 trails accessed via three chairlifts, 250 acres of hike-to terrain, access to summer hiking trails, and an all-new network of mountain biking trails. Lee Canyon’s location, combined with its product offering, made this addition in April 2023 a natural fit within the MCP collective. MCP is currently exploring its signature "Skiing First" capital improvements and those will be announced at a later date.
“We reinvest every possible dollar into mountain improvements to create a better overall skiing experience.”
James Coleman, Managing Partner