Getting To Monarch

Getting To Monarch

Where is Monarch Mountain?

Monarch Ski Resort is located on Highway 50 on the Monarch Pass, 155 miles southwest of Denver and 120 miles west of Colorado Springs.

Nearby towns include Salida (20 miles to the east), Poncha Springs (16 miles to the east), and Buena Vista (37 miles to the northeast). The little settlement of Monarch (formerly Garfield) is located 3 miles northeast of Monarch ski resort (on the Salida side of the pass).

Flights to Gunnison

The closest major airport is the Gunnison airport (GUC) which is just 45 miles from Monarch Mountain. The airport receives direct flights from Salt Lake City, and during winter there are direct flights from Dallas/Ft Worth with American Airlines and from Houston with Continental/United. You can search for flights using one of our flight search aggregators.

Alpine Express provides shuttle transport from the Gunnison airport to Monarch ski area or Monarch Lodge, but most travellers will need a car so it’s best to get a car rental.

Flying into Denver

Denver International Airport can also be used as a gateway airport. Denver airport is serviced by all major carriers and has very regular schedules, and there is a wealth of car rental options at DIA. 

Driving to Monarch

The drive up Monarch Pass from either side is a good climb and rather windy, but the road is wide and fully paved so the drive is pretty easy. The pass only closes once in a blue moon for avalanche control.

The car park at Monarch is now paved so you don’t have to wade around in the mud. Better still the car parking is free and it’s really close to the lift ticket office.

Bus from Salida to Monarch

Most visitors to Monarch will want to have a car because shuttles around the area are very limited. The Salida Recreation Department offers a cheap ski bus from the hot springs pool to Monarch Mountain on most Fridays and Saturdays, so this is really only used by the locals.

Other Ski Resorts Nearby

Crested Butte is northwest of Monarch Mountain, about a 1.5 hour drive away.

The little Ski Cooper is 81 miles to the north, about a 1.5 hour drive.