This ski resort sits just outside Minneapolis and St. Paul in Minnesota’s St. Croix River Valley.
With close to 300 skiable acres, the small resort experienced a $10-million investment into the base area facilities, a new terrain park and snowmaking system in 2013 after it was bought by Vail Resorts the previous year.
Afton Alps has top elevation of 700 feet, with a vertical drop of 350 feet. There are 50 runs that can be accessed by 18 chairlifts and four surface lifts, with a lift capacity of 20,000 people an hour. Annual snowfall in the area is about 55 inches, and snowmaking covers 100 percent of the terrain at Afton Alps. While there is no tubing or ice skating, night skiing is available until 8 pm Monday through Saturday, and until 6 pm on Sunday. Afton Alps also has an on-site equipment rental operation. There is slope-side dining at the resort, though no on-site lodging.
The season at Afton Alps generally begins in late November and runs until early April. Because of the resort’s ample snowmaking ability, it doesn’t need to rely on natural snowfall. Because of Afton Alps popularity, mid-week and night skiing are good ways to avoid the crowds.
Afton Alps is operating at a limited capacity for the 2020/21 ski season. We recommend booking your tickets online well ahead of your desired ski date to ensure availability. Full-day and 3 pm tickets are available.
Adults (13–64) Full-day lift tickets for adults range from around $50 to $65, depending on the day of the week. Saturday and Sunday lift tickets generally cost more, but you can save by booking online well in advance. Evening skiing, or 3 pm tickets, cost between $49 and $59.
Child (5–12) Kids’ full-day lift tickets at Afton Alps range from $49 to $59, depending on whether it’s a weekday or a weekend. You can save a few dollars by opting for a 3 pm ticket, which range from $44 to $54.
Senior lift tickets are priced similarly to child lift tickets.
There is a Ski & Ride School that offers private and group lessons for kids and adults, including multi-week programs and a “Ski Girls Rock” for girls ages 7 to 17, taught by female instructors.
While there is no ski-in/ski-out accommodation at Afton Alps, there is plenty of lodging in the nearby town of Afton and the surrounding towns, with some hotels offering stay-and-ski packages. Another option is staying in St. Paul and making the 30-minute drive to the resort.
Afton Alps has a number of places to grab a bite to eat on the slopes. The Alps Chalet has everything from breakfast sandwiches to cheeseburgers and pizzas, while The Crest Mountain Grill offers up Wisconsin cheese curds, the famous Epic Burger, and pulled pork sandwiches. There are also a number of casual, family-friendly restaurants in downtown Afton.
The closest major airport to Afton Alps is Minneapolis-St Paul International Airport, about 30 miles away. There are rental car operations and a shuttle service available at the airport.
By car, Afton Alps is about 45 minutes from Minneapolis, 30 minutes from Saint Paul, and about two and half hours from Duluth. Once in Afton, there are three taxi companies that serve the area, however transportation is easier with a personal vehicle.