Elevation & Climate

Sitting at 7890 feet, Aspen enjoys warm, dry summers with daytime highs up to 90 degrees and cool evenings of 50. Brief afternoon showers are frequent in the summer. In winter, Aspen is renowned for its sun. Days range from 20 to 40 degrees in town and from 10 to 30 on the mountain. Once the sun sets, the temperature drops dramatically to the teens and the occasional zero reading.

Insider's Favorites


Living the Good Life in Aspen

Famous and beautiful, Aspen now has around 6,500 permanent residents and many, many second-home owners. With a character that is a joyful melange of mountain retreat, counter-cultural roots and international glitter, Aspen is a place like no other.

Aspen's history in brief: Founded as a silver mining town, Aspen has followed the fortunes of silver. After silver was devalued by the gold standard, Aspen declined and nearly became a ghost town, with only about 700 residents remaining by 1930.

The town's resurgence was also based on silver: the skiing kind. Following World War II, veterans of the 10th Mountain Division sparked Colorado's ski industry.

Veteran Friedl Pfeifer joined with industrialist Walter Paepke to revitalize the town, hosting the FIS International Ski Championships in 1950 and the Goethe Bicentennial Convocation in 1949. Building around the Aspen Idea, a theme of "body, mind and spirit", the town developed the Aspen Institute for Humanistic Studies, the Aspen Music Festival and the International Design Conference. Over the years, the Aspen Idea has given birth to a wide range of non-profit groups supporting arts, culture and the health of local communities up and down the Roaring Fork Valley.

Starting in the late 1960's, Aspen became celebrity retreat, with residents that included journalist Hunter S. Thompson, singer John Denver, Don Henley of the Eagles, Goldie Hawn and Kurt Russell, Barbie Benton, Jack Nicholson, Kevin Costner and Mariah Carey. Today the musicians and movie stars have been joined by corporate executives. As a result, Aspen (and nearby Woody Creek) holds the United States' most expensive real estate, as well as being a hub for politics, ideas and culture. 

Events & Attractions

Aspen offers a wealth of cultural offerings and is home to four world-class ski and snowboarding areas: Ajax Mountain, Aspen Highlands, Buttermilk and Snowmass.

Aspen Cultural Links
Aspen Educational Resources

Aspen's downtown Core is an upscale shopping district that includes high-end restaurants, salons, and boutiques. Aspen boasts Ralph Lauren, Dior, Louis Vuitton, Prada, Gucci, Fendi, Burberry, Brioni, theory and Ermenegildo Zegna boutiques.

Aspen Schools

These are among the best-rated schools in Aspen:

  • Aspen Middle School (Public school, grades 5-8)
  • Aspen High School (Public school, grades 9-12)
  • Aspen Elementary School (Public school, grades PK-4)
  • Aspen Community Charter School (Charter, grades PK-8)
  • Aspen Country Day School (Private, grades PK-8)

To see more detail about Aspen schools and daycare facilities, visit this Aspen page at GreatSchools.org.

Aspen also hosts a wealth of institutions devoted to environmental, cultural and scientific education for adults. To learn more about these, explore the links to the right.