Courtesy of Beaver Creek Resort

Summer Fun at North American Ski Resorts

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Think ski resorts are just for winter fun? Think again. When the temperatures start to rise, ski areas come alive with an array of activities and events, from adrenaline-pumping pursuits like mountain biking to mellower endeavors like spa treatments and yoga classes.

 

Ready to hit the road this summer? Start planning the perfect warm-weather getaway at these ski areas in Colorado and beyond.

 

Schweitzer

 

Courtesy of Schweitzer

 

Venture up north—way north—to the Idaho panhandle for summertime adventures at Schweitzer. Situated among the Selkirk Mountains, this mountain resort in Sandpoint, Idaho, offers breathtaking views of the 43-mile-long Lake Pend Oreille in the valley below. Here, you’ll find good old-fashioned family fun: you can pick huckleberries, go geocaching, jump on a trampoline, play disc golf, go horseback riding, fly through the air on a zip line and race up a climbing wall. Bring your mountain bike (or rent one) and ride the more than 40 miles of trails at Schweitzer, including cross-country and downhill routes. And if you prefer to explore on foot, you can also hike and trail run on the mountain.

 

After a day of adventures, prepare to do it all over again with a recovery massage at the new Cambium Spa. Grab a bite at the Crow’s Bench restaurant, then rest up at the Humbird Hotel, a new boutique slopeside lodging option with modern architectural and design elements. (And when you stay at the Humbird, you won’t have to ask the front desk for a room with a view: All 31 rooms face southeast and have huge picture windows that frame in Lake Pend Oreille.) For even more summer fun, head into town and play at the lake. schweitzer.com

Aspen Snowmass

 

Courtesy of Aspen Snowmass

 

Skiers and snowboarders from all over the world flock to Aspen every winter to take advantage of the glittering slopes at its four diverse mountains: Aspen Mountain, Snowmass, Aspen Highlands and Buttermilk. But the Roaring Fork Valley really puts on a show come summer, when colorful wildflowers begin to pop and bright green aspen leaves dance on the breeze. On Aspen Mountain, ride the Silver Queen Gondola to the top and take in the sweeping, panoramic views of the Elk Mountains. Enjoy lunch at the Sundeck, play disc golf or just hike among the wildflowers.

 

Head to neighboring Snowmass for thrilling downhill mountain biking on 25 miles of purpose-built trails ranging from beginner to advanced. If you’re still leveling up your skills, you can always book a lesson with one of Snowmass’ expert instructors. While at Snowmass, also make sure to visit the Lost Forest, which is brimming with family-friendly activities like an alpine coaster, a climbing wall, a disc golf course, a zipline, a ropes challenge course and a trout pond. Up for a little friendly competition? You can also challenge your travel companions to a round of paintball here, too.

 

For lodging, we recommend checking into one of the two Limelight Hotels in the region—one’s in Aspen and the other is in Snowmass. With living room-style lounges, colorful decor, easy access to the slopes and handy amenities—like an amazing complimentary breakfast spread—these properties will help make your summer trip even more memorable. aspensnowmass.com

Winter Park

 

Courtesy of Winter Park Resort

 

Once the snow melts across its 3,081 acres of terrain, Winter Park transforms into a warm-weather playground that’s ideal for a family getaway. For mountain bikers, Trestle Bike Park is the big draw, offering more than 40 miles of gravity-fed trails for riders of all ability levels. If you’ve always wanted to try mountain biking, you can book a lesson and rent gear here, too.

 

Of course, mountain biking isn’t the only way to play at Winter Park come summer. Enjoy panoramic views during a scenic gondola ride, take an e-bike tour, play around on the putting course or take your four-legged friend on a stunning wildflower hike. Embrace your artistic side during a hiking and plein air painting excursion with a local Fraser Valley artist, or feel like a kid again while zooming down the 3,000-foot alpine slide. Join little ones on a free “Junior Trailblazer” scavenger hunt, or treat yourself to a relaxing afternoon at Alpenglow Massage. You can also take a guided astronomy tour, enjoy a mountaintop charcuterie board or re-center yourself during an outdoor yoga class.

 

Winter Park also hosts tons of fun summer events, including festivals focused on everything from craft beer and wine to jazz music. Make a vacation out of it by booking a stay at one of Winter Park’s on-site lodgings, like the Vintage Hotel or Zephyr Mountain Lodge. winterpark.com

Granby Ranch

 

Courtesy of Granby Ranch

 

Situated in Grand County, not far from the western entrance to Rocky Mountain National Park, Granby Ranch beckons travelers with its sprawling terrain. During the summer months, hit the links on the ranch’s beautiful 18-hole golf course, which offers views of the Rockies and the Fraser River. (Pro tip: In between shots, keep your eyes peeled for wildlife, as golfers have reported spotting porcupines, elk, badgers, mule deer, pronghorns, beavers, red-tailed hawks, weasels, moose and golden eagles here!)

 

Enjoy lift-serviced downhill mountain bike trails, as well as stunning ridgeline cross-country rides, or hit the trails on your own two feet by hiking. After a day full of adventures, tuck into a plate of mouth-watering barbecue at Bluebird Bistro. Be sure to bookmark Granby Ranch’s online calendar so you can stay on top of fun seasonal events, like concerts, too. granbyranch.com

Park City Mountain

 

Courtesy of Park City Mountain Resort

 

Up for a fun road trip? Point your wheels west and head to Park City Mountain, a massive Utah ski resort that becomes a fun, family-friendly paradise each summer. Here, you can enjoy mild temperatures and sunshine while riding the mountain coaster, zooming down the alpine slide, soaring through the air on the zip line, playing mini golf and bouncing on four “Legacy Launcher” trampolines.

 

Play disc golf on the 18-hole mountain course, which has more than 350 feet of elevation change, or hit the links at Canyon Golf. Pan for gems at Park City’s Adventure Park, stroll the weekly farmers market and jam along to live music during outdoor concerts. Park City Mountain also offers lift-served mountain biking across an array of beginner, intermediate and advanced trails. parkcitymountain.com

 

Beaver Creek

 

Courtesy of Beaver Creek Resort

 

Whether you love relaxing wine tastings or exhilarating 4X4 mountain tours, Beaver Creek offers a little something for everyone during the summer. Hit the links and play a round of golf, enjoy a day on the river with a guided fly-fishing excursion or marvel at the views of the Gore Range while hiking around the mountain. If you’re traveling with little ones, head to the Summer Adventure Center for scenic chairlift rides, mini golf, gem panning, a bungee trampoline and a climbing wall.

 

Beaver Creek is also home to some incredible fine dining, like Beano’s Cabin, an award-winning restaurant situated inside a rustic cabin at the base of the Larkspur Bowl that offers sumptuous five-course meals and an extensive wine list. And dining at Beano’s is only one part of the magical experience: To get to the cabin, choose between a one-hour horseback ride or a 20-minute wagon ride behind a John Deer diesel tractor. (You can also opt for a quick shuttle ride.)

 

Treat yourself to a relaxing stay at Park Hyatt Beaver Creek, The Westin Riverfront Resort & Spa or The Ritz-Carlton, Bachelor Gulch. beavercreek.com

 

SkiBig3

 

Courtesy of Chris Moseley/SkiBig3

 

Dust off your passport and visit our neighbors to the north during a trip to Banff, Alberta, Canada. This region boasts three ski resorts, all situated within the bounds of the sprawling Banff National Park: Banff Sunshine, Mt. Norquay and Lake Louise. Choose from an array of activities, like a scenic chairlift at Mt. Norquay that transports you to nearly 7,000 feet above sea level for lunch with a view at the historic Cliffhouse Bistro. At Banff Sunshine, explore three pristine alpine lakes—Laryx, Grizzly and Rock Isle—and marvel at the 360-degree panoramic views from the top. And, at Lake Louise, keep your eyes peeled for grizzly bears and other wildlife while riding the gondola, then hit the hiking trails for even more gorgeous scenery. At the SkiBig3 Adventure Hub, you can also rent e-bikes, stand-up paddleboards, hiking poles and more. skibig3.com

 

 

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