Sandia Peak Ski Area, New Mexico

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Sandia Peak Ski Area in New Mexico & Escape2ski provides info on; vertical drop 1700ft/518m, total trails 30, closest airport 23mi/37km, lifts 6, and more. Sandia Peak Ski Area is situated on the backside of the Sandia Mountain Range located in the Cibola National Forest at the edge of the city of Albuquerque. The ski […]

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Sandia Peak Ski Area in New Mexico & Escape2ski provides info on; vertical drop 1700ft/518m, total trails 30, closest airport 23mi/37km, lifts 6, and more.

Sandia Peak Ski Area is situated on the backside of the Sandia Mountain Range located in the Cibola National Forest at the edge of the city of Albuquerque. The ski area can be accessed by either the Aerial Tram located on the Albuquerque side of the mountain or by US Highway 536 located on back side of the mountain.

Robert J Nordhaus, a lawyer, and ski enthusiast from Albuquerque, who also served as a member of the 10th Mountain Division, a light infantry mountain warfare unit, was the visionary behind the building of the ski area with a group of friends from the Albuquerque Ski Club he founded.

His dream was realized in 1936 when La Madera Ski Area opened to the public with two rope tows and several trails. With continued support from ski enthusiasts, expansion began with the addition of new trails and the construction of a base lodge in 1938. In 1939, the ski area hosted New Mexico’s first downhill ski race.

Further expansion occurred in 1947 when the 4200ft/1280m long Constram T-Bar was installed that was heralded as the countries longest T-Bar at the time. Another milestone occurred in 1962 when the ski area installed its first chairlift and the name was changed to Sandia Peak Ski Area.

Perhaps one of the most significant improvements came when Robert J Nordhaus and Ben Abruzzo had the idea of installing an Aerial Tram on the rugged terrain of Albuquerque side of the Sandia Mountains. After several years of planning and development, the Sandia Peak Arial Tramway opened to the summit on May 7, 1966. There are two tram cars capable of carrying 50 passengers each and will ascend 4000ft/1219m in15 minutes.

Sandia Peak Ski Area has grown to be a year-round recreation area with skiing and snowboarding in the winter along with mountain biking, hiking, and sightseeing during the other seasons.

On the Slopes

  • Sandia Peak Ski Area is a great place for the entire family to come and enjoy a day together. The terrain consists of a good selection of intermediate terrain such as Exhibition and Double Eagle, as well as, several advanced trails to test your ability.
  • There is also a dedicated beginner area near the base lodge that will allow you the time and space to develop your skills along with several peak-to-base beginner trails known as Cibola and Fred’s Run.
  • Sandia Peak Ski Area is home to the Scrapyard Terrain Park. The park contains features such boxes, rails, rainbows, and small jumps that will test your skill level.
  • The Snow Sports School has qualified instructors that teach a variety of programs ranging from children’s programs in the Cubby Corner for ages 4-6 years, as well as, adult, group, private and adaptive lessons.
  • Sandia Peak Ski Area has no accommodations on the mountain. However, with the city of Albuquerque at your fingertips the choices for lodging, dining, shopping and all sorts of entertainment are almost endless.

Off the Slopes

  • The Double Eagle Day Lodge is located at the ski area base and this is where you will find the Double Eagle ll Café, Rental Shop, Lost and Found, and the Sandia Peak Sports Retail Shop. The retail shop contains essentials such as sunscreen, goggles, hats, and gloves.
  • The Sandia Peak Aerial Tram is a great way to be treated to a spectacular view of the city of Albuquerque, New Mexico and the surrounding area. The Aerial Tram will take you on a 2.7mi/4.5km journey to the summit of the Sandia Mountains. Fact, the Tram makes approximately 10,500 trips per year.
  • The New Mexico Ski Museum and Hall of Fame are located at the base area of the Tram for all who want to learn about skiing and snowboarding in New Mexico. Admission is free.
  • Sandiago’s Grill at the Tram which opened in 2002 is located at the base of the Tram and features lunch, dinner, and a place for drinks. There is also a restaurant located at the summit and offers an extensive menu, plus spectacular views while you enjoy time with family or friends.
  • The city of Albuquerque has lots of fun events that feature music, theater, visual arts, sports, museums, and more. Visit the charming Historic Old town district, founded in 1706 where you can find over 150 retail shops, galleries and artist studios, plus a great selection of restaurant options.
  • There is no public transit to either the Aerial Tram from the city of Albuquerque or to the backside of the mountain to the ski base area.
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Mountain Information

Current Status: Closed

Mountain Essentials

Vertical Drop:
1700 ft / 518 m

Base Elevation:
8678 ft / 2645 m

Summit Elevation:
10378 ft / 3163 m

Skiable Area:
200 acres

Average Snowfall:
125 in / 318 cm

Trail Map

Snow Report

Mountain Terrain

Total Trails: 35

Beginner: 8 (23%)

Intermediate: 17 (48%)

Advanced: 10 (29%)

Expert: 0 (0%)

Terrain Parks: 1

Snow Cross: No

Super Pipe: No

Half Pipe: No

Jib Park: Yes


Ski & Snowboard School: Both

Rentals & Repairs: Yes

Parking:  Free

Retail Shops: Yes

Children’s Ski Programs: Yes

Women's Ski Programs: Yes

Adaptive Ski Programs: Yes

Childcare: No

Day Lodges: Yes

Restaurants: Yes

Distance from...

Nearest Airport:
Albuquerque NM , 23mi / 37km

Nearest Major City:
Albuquerque NM, 14mi / 23km

Nearest Town/City:
Albuquerque NM, 14mi / 23km

Mountain Operations

Season Dates: Jan 30 to Mar 14

Skiing & Snowboarding: Both

Open Days: F, Sa, Su

Hours of Operation:
9:00am to 4:00pm : Hours maybe subject to change.

Night Skiing: No

Lift Ticket Prices


Lift Information

Total Lifts: 4

Double Chairs: 3

Surface Lifts: 1


Mountainside: No

Within 20mi / 33km: Yes

Closest Airport(s)

What our Convenience Rankings™ mean

Albuquerque Intl Sunport  (ABQ)
Distance: 23 mi / 37 km
Ranking: Most Convenient

Contact Info

Central Reservations: N/A

Direct Phone: 505-242-9052

Snow Phone: 505-242-9052

Helpful Links

Official Ski Resort Site