Ski season is upon us, and Breckenridge, Colorado is home to one of the most popular ski resorts in the Western Hemisphere! With five huge peaks, more than 2,900 acres, four terrain parks (one for every skill level), a 22-foot super pipe, 11 bowls, the highest chairlift in North America and a world-class ski school, “Breck” is a top-notch destination for both winter and spring skiing.
After a flight into Denver and an easy two-hour ride via the Colorado Mountain Express shuttle, we arrived at Mountain Thunder Lodge. Beautifully decorated with an elegant but rustic feel, the cozy one bedroom condo had a fully updated kitchen, a living room with a fireplace and a balcony where we sat and watched the snow fall.
You can ski in and out of Mountain Thunder Lodge, or you can take the complimentary shuttle or gondola to Peak 7, home to Breck Sports where you’ll get your ski rentals and lift tickets. While you’re there, set up your EpicMix account so you can track how many vertical feet you skied, which digital pins you earned and view and share photos of you on the mountain taken by EpicMix photographers!
If you can, treat yourself to a private ski instructor. There’s nothing like having the one-on-one attention of a guide who can help you navigate the slopes and teach you technique. There is a lot of terrain to explore – in 2013, Breck opened Peak 6, the biggest resort expansion in the last decade which features high-alpine, intermediate bowl skiing – a rare find in North America. It’s also nice to have company when riding the highest chair lift in North America (nearly 13,000 feet)!
One Ski Hill Place (OSHP), sits right in the hub of ski activity at the resort. OSHP is a luxurious lodge where you can grab a bite to eat and then visit the spa to swim in the heated pool or get a massage. All of your Après-ski options are within walking distance, too.
Mountain Thunder Lodge is only two blocks away from Breck’s iconic Main Street, so after we had time to rest up after a day of skiing, we took some time to explore.
Sitting at the base of the Rocky Mountains, at a whopping 9,600 feet elevation, Breckenridge is a quaint and colorful town that boasts a “made-in-Breck” food and beverage scene: 70 independently owned restaurants and bars, Breckenridge Brewery (one of the nation’s first microbreweries) and the award winning Breckenridge Distillery, the world’s highest distillery whose products are made with snowmelt from the Rockies.
Breck is also known for its vibrant arts scene. Make sure and save time to check out the Breck Arts District, where we found resident artists honing their craft. In fact, the second annual Fire Arts Festival, a celebration and exhibition of fire, metal, glass and light art, is January 28-31.
Ready for a late night? The Absinthe Bar gives a run-through on how to drink this classic libation or try the Gold Pan Saloon, a local favorite, which is said to have the longest operating liquor license west of the Mississippi.
Whether you’re a beginner skier or you shred black diamonds like a pro, Breck can accommodate any ski experience, and it’ll all be wrapped up in the friendly, hip vibe the town and its residents are known for.
Feature photo courtesy Breck Resorts