The Bud Light Cowboy Downhill Returns January 17, 2022

Mark your calendars for Monday, January 17, 2022 (Martin Luther King, Jr. Day). The Bud Light Cowboy Downhill is back in full force with cowboys, cowgirls, rodeo queens, clowns, horses, live music and more.

Returning to the slopes of Steamboat for the 47th year, this thrilling event opens with a GoPro Bomb Squad sky dive followed by dual slalom and stampede races to the base of Steamboat Ski Resort and concluding with a free concert in Steamboat Square featuring high-energy bluegrass ensemble The Lil Smokies.

A true Steamboat tradition, the Bud Light Cowboy Downhill began nearly 50 years ago when Billy Kidd, Steamboat’s Director of Skiing, and Larry Mahan, six-time all-around World Champion cowboy, decided to invite a few of the Pro Rodeo stars to Steamboat for a day of skiing. The cowboys had such a rockin’ good time that the downhill race has become the most popular event of the season with over 100 of the best professional rodeo cowboys and cowgirls competing.

The Cowboy Downhill coincides with the National Western Stock Show in Denver and celebrates Steamboat’s ranching roots and Western heritage. This is the only place you’ll find a unique event like this — a special rodeo-meets-ski-race hybrid based around hospitality and welcoming athletes to the slopes to try the sport of skiing.

While some participant’s skiing skills have improved over the years, there are always first-time skiers that partake in the race on their very first day on the slopes, which leads to a lot of smiles and spills.

Race Details

The Bud Light Cowboy Downhill Returns January 17, 2022

In a timed event, cowboys and cowgirls ski down a dual slalom course, go over a jump, lasso a lady, saddle a horse and cross the finish line. The stampede event follows with a mass start and the first cowboy or cowgirl to the bottom claiming victory. The only rule: All participants must wear chaps and cowboy hats.

Winning prize packages include airline tickets, skis, GoPro cameras, Yeti Coolers and more. Prizes are awarded to the top 10 dual slalom finishers, the stampede race winner, the best wreck and the fastest legend and founder.

Insider Tips

  • Arrive early. The Western Celebration begins in Steamboat Square at 11 a.m. with a 4-H petting zoo, roping clinic and more.
  • Keep an eye out for the Denver Broncos Cheerleaders. This is one of their favorite events and they’re known to forerun the course as well as take pictures and sign autographs.
  • Snag a spot on the Timber & Torch deck; it’s an excellent place to view the race and grab lunch or a drink.
  • Watching along the fence is another great option to catch the action up close.
  • Pay attention to the rodeo clown, he is super funny and gives away prizes!

Full Schedule of Events

11 a.m.

Festivities Kick-Off in Steamboat Square

Festivities for the 47th Annual Bud Light Cowboy Downhill include a western celebration in Steamboat Square featuring 4-H farm animals, food and refreshments at Timber & Torch Grill, a learn-to-rope clinic, appearances by the Denver Broncos Cheerleaders, as well as commemorative Bud Light Cowboy Downhill logo wear and souvenirs.

1 p.m.

47th Annual Bud Light Cowboy Downhill

When the race kicks off at 1 p.m., cowboys and cowgirls ski down a dual slalom course, go over a jump, lasso a person, saddle a horse and cross the finish line. The dual slalom is followed by the Stampede Event, which is a mass start; first cowboy/girl to the bottom wins.

2:30 p.m.

Free Bud Light Concert Featuring The Lil Smokies

Following the stampede, there will be a Free Bud Light Concert featuring The Lil Smokies in Steamboat Square. Learn more or view lodging packages.

The Bud Light Cowboy Downhill Returns January 17, 2022