Taos Ski Valley NM Community Profile
Taos Ski Valley is located at the head of the Rio Hondo Canyon, surrounded by Carson National Forest in an area known as the La Cal Basin. The state of New Mexico’s highest peak, Wheeler Peak at 13,167 feet, towers to the east, and the ridge off Kachina Peak at 12,481 feet establishes the western boundary. The climate is montane and alpine, with typical winter lows below zero and summer highs in the 70s.
The area’s economy is dominated by Taos Ski Valley’s world-class winter sports mountain that is known for its steep trails and an average of around 300 inches of snowfall per season. The basin area first attracted settlers when gold and copper were discovered in the early 1900s.
Founder Ernie Blake put up the first ski lift in 1956, and until 2013, the Blake family still owned the resort. In 2013 the Blakes sold their holdings in the Taos Ski Valley mountain and facilities to former hedge fund manager Louis Bacon, who immediately began upgrades and renovations, including the new Kachina Peak lift.
At 9,200 feet elevation, the base area includes both day shops and restaurants and overnight lodging facilities. The Taos Ski Valley mountain has 15 lifts and 110 trails, with a total vertical drop of more than 3,000 feet About 250,000 skiers and snowboarders (admitted in 2010) typically hit the slopes every year. Other activities in the winter include snowmobiling, snowshoeing, cross-country and back-country skiing, and tubing. In the summer months, the main chairlift continues to transport hikers, mountain bikers, and sightseers to mid-mountain elevations.
Incorporated in 1996, the Village of Taos Ski Valley encompasses 2.3 square miles in the ski valley and administers municipal services, such as water, sewer, and police services for the community.
Taos Ski Valley Population
Estimated Taos Ski Valley 2015: 69 year-round; up to 4,000 seasonal (winter)
Source: U.S. Census Bureau (https://www.census.gov/quickfacts/); Village of Taos Ski Valley Master Plan
Taos Ski Valley Taxes
Gross Receipts Tax (Jul-Dec 2018): 9.2500 percent on goods and services
Source: NM Taxation & Revenue
Residential Property Tax Rate (2018): 22.950 mills
Source: N.M. Finance & Administration (http://nmdfa.state.nm.us/Certificate_of_Property_Tax.aspx)
Taos Ski Valley Schools
None; area within Taos Municipal School District
Taos Ski Valley Public Recreation Facilities
Hiking/Mountain Biking/X-C: Carson National Forest, 208 Cruz Alta Road, Taos, NM 87571, (575) 758-6200, https://www.fs.usda.gov/carson; popular trails include Williams Lake Trail, Bull ‘O The Woods Trail, Gold Hill Trail, Yerba Canyon Trail, Gavilan Canyon Trail
Fishing: Rio Hondo, Lake Fork
Taos Ski Valley Form of Government
Mayor and four-member village council, staggered four-year term; village administrator
Taos Ski Valley Public Transportation
Taos Express Winter Shuttle
(575) 751-4459 (winter only)
TSV daily shuttle to Santa Fe and Albuquerque airports, (800) 776-1111 (winter only)
Taos Ski Valley Health Services
Mogul Medical Urgent Care, open during ski season only, https://mogulmedical.com, (575) 776-8421
Taos Ski Valley Driving Distances
Taos: 19-miles (32 min)
Red River: 41-miles (1 hr 1 min)
Angel Fire: 43-miles (1 hr 12 min)
Santa Fe: 89-miles (1 hr 55 min)
Albuquerque: 152-miles (2 hr 48 min)
Denver: 300-miles (4 hr 46 min)
Oklahoma City: 542-miles (9 hr 5 min)
Phoenix: 567-miles (9 hr 2 min)
Dallas: 696-miles (10 hr 52 min)
Houston: 931-miles (14 hr 10 min)