1080’s, national TV coverage, fur coats and crazy après—ah yes, the Winter X-Games at Aspen. There’s nothing quite like the radical antics of snowmobiles, snowboards, bikes and drunken fans to entertain a weekend away. Sensory and liver stimulation aside, down the valley and a few hours west on I-70, a totally different form of entertainment awaits. For those eschewing the valet service and upscale priorities of the country’s most international ski town, there is a mellow alternative—Powderhorn. Mid-X, I grabbed Colorado loc Laura Hadar and went to check out this low-profile gem. Snuggled up against the edge of the Grand Mesa, and thirty-five minutes from Grand Junction, this family-style resort offers a laid back atmosphere with some of the driest snow around.From the top of Powderhorn’s, lifts you’re looking out at the massive expanse of high desert mesas and plateaus. Due to its desert climes, the snow that falls here is of the champagne variety—offering up blinding curtain face shots that dissolve crystalline, flake-by-flake. There’s no sub-marining the nose under this stuff.Powderhorn has a nice network of trails, and plenty of classic Colorado shred amenity—perfectly gladded tree riding. Drop in off the top of the West End chair for runs through perfectly spaced Aspens. The Take Four lift, boasts more steeply pitched tree riding right to the side of the lift.A terrain park is also maintained underneath the Take Four lift, and a midway get off point means quick laps. The pace may be laid back, but the facilities are totally up to speed. A modern and fully equipped base lodge takes care of all your shredder needs—breakfast, lunch, beers and rentals. Powderhorn offers an intimate shredding experience that is pretty much the opposite of the spring-break/economically voyeuristic Aspen X-Games. Cheap tickets, slower lifts, and dry, dry powder. When you need a break form the bling, take a trip west into the desert and check this resort out.