A gem exists in northern New Mexico, where the sun shines 300 days a year and you can often ski sans jacket. Pajarito Mountain has a base elevation of 9,200 feet above sea level, and top elevation of 10,400 feet. The resort is located on the eastern slopes of the Jemez Mountains near Los Alamos.Only a two-hour drive from Albuquerque and 45 minutes from Santa Fe, Pajarito has 40 trails, 300 skiable acres, not including the tree skiing, and 1,200 feet of vertical drop — plenty to keep skiers and boarders busy. It boasts five chairlifts including three doubles, one triple and a quad. Pajarito’s terrain includes miles of groomed trails, bump runs and glade skiing. Pajarito is unique because it’s owned by the Los Alamos Ski Club Inc., a non-profit organization. The ski area is also helping redefine environmental stewardship in the local ski industry. Pajarito is one of several ground-breaking ski areas that recently launched a “green tag” program where visitors can opt to pay a fee to offset carbon emissions and support alternative energy strategies such as wind and solar.The Pajarito Mountain Snowsports School has Professional Ski Instructors of America-certified teachers. Group classes are available for riders six and older, and privates are offered for ages three and up.With its Rio Grande valley views, well-known tree skiing and bump runs, fabulous terrain park, lack of lift lines and fabulous weather, Pajarito may be New Mexico’s best-kept skiing secret.