The Best Season to get Unplugged in Steamboat Springs is Off-Season
Just like this season’s snow, the secret is slowly trickling out: off-season is the best season. Come spring, Steamboat Springs comes alive. As the snow melts, the river roars through the valley, the hillsides turn bright green and the trails thaw, beckoning hikers and bikers. And best of all, the pace is nice and slow around town, making it the perfect destination to really unplug. If you’re ready to disconnect from the “to do” list and reconnect with yourself and loved ones, head to Steamboat Springs for a little R&R. Hike, pamper yourself with a spa treatment, stroll through the galleries in town and give yourself the time to truly unwind.
HIKE YOUR HEART OUT
Spending time hiking outside is one of the best ways to reconnect with yourself and nature. Steamboat Springs offers a plethora of options. Spring is the best time to view the towering 280-foot waterfall at Fish Creek Falls as the snowmelt and high water levels create a spectacular sight. Additionally, we suggest checking out the following trails:
• Spring Creek Trail is a multi-use trail that conveniently starts in town (parking located at East Maple Street and Amethyst Street);
• Blackmere Trail, a popular smooth, wide dirt road on Emerald Mountain;
• Rotary Trail, located on the backside of Emerald Mountain;
• Panorama Trail, an easy-going climb that yields panoramic views of the Yampa River Valley and the Flattop Mountains;
• Mad Creek Trail, a 1.5-mile trail that boasts views of beautiful wildflowers as well the 100+-year-old Mad Creek barn (open after May 15).
To find out which trails are currently open, visit the City of Steamboat Springs Trails System.
SOAK UP THE OUTDOORS
Trappers Lake Lodge & Resort is a rustic and remote lodging option located 70 miles southwest of Steamboat Springs in the heart of Colorado’s White River National Forest & Flat Tops Wilderness. Stay in a quaint log cabin or opt to camp at one of the wilderness campsites accessible by foot or horseback. Fishing, hiking, canoeing, horseback riding, stargazing and general unwinding await. A general store, laundry facility, bathhouse, restaurant and full bar are on site.
Vista Verde Guest Ranch, situated at 7,752 feet in the Elk River Valley and surrounded by the National Forest, is a unique blend of AAA Four Diamond amenities and authentic western hospitality. This summer Vista Verde is offering two programs that really help guests unplug.
The robust kid’s program includes a new mindfulness component. Activities like horseback riding, fishing, scavenger hunts, panning for gold, paddleboarding and more will include mindfulness exercises where kids are encouraged to be aware of what they can discover when they’re observant.
Also new this summer, the Epic Experience gives guests the opportunity to head out deep into the backcountry with the Adventure Center crew for an overnight tent stay where they can truly unplug. This experience includes a vigorous hike while carrying your pack, dinner, and stories as the sun drops behind the peaks. Numbers are limited and there is an additional cost.
Complement your next soak at Strawberry Park Hot Springs by booking a massage. Enjoy a treatment (various modalities offered) in a beautiful private hut near the healing springs, or enjoy watsu therapy in a private pool. Watsu is a form of aquatic bodywork that’s deeply relaxing. Take the pampering one step further by staying a night or two in one of the unique rustic lodging options, including cabins, a covered wagon and even a train caboose. Because there is no cell phone signal here, you won’t even be tempted to plug in.
Neptune Healing & Float Spa is another ideal spot to relax. Here, float pods filled with 10-inches of water and 900 pounds of Epsom salts allow you to float effortlessly while completely supported. Devotees rave a float session helps them feel less pain, tension, and anxiety and improves their sleep and creativity.
EXPLORE THE ART GALLERIES
For its size, Steamboat Springs boasts a vibrant local art scene so much so it was officially designated one of the state’s 23 Creative Districts in 2018. Be sure to pop into the Steamboat Springs Art Museum, an impressive free museum located in one of the town’s most historic buildings. A new juried exhibition titled “Looking West: An Exhibition Highlighting Works by American Women Artists” opens May 24 and will feature 150 paintings and sculptures by members of American Women Artists.
Spring is a lovely time to stroll through the town’s 15 art galleries. Don’t forget that on the first Friday of every month, the galleries are open late (5 to 8 p.m.) and serve refreshments during the First Friday Artwalk.
About Steamboat Springs
A Northwest Colorado gem just 2.5 hours from Denver, Steamboat Springs is a year-round outdoor playground and a historic resort town where western heritage meets abundant adventure. Summertime in Steamboat means miles of single track and endless county roads, tubing the Yampa and soaking in the hot springs, golfing among the peaks and valleys, and exploring the abundant lakes, rivers and streams that dot the landscape. Downtown Steamboat Springs pays tribute to its ranching roots with a renowned weekly rodeo, heritage shops and outfitters, and a culinary community that takes homegrown to new heights. Throughout the summer Steamboat blooms with activity from Lincoln Avenue to the mountain base and beyond. Get Up Here and experience one of Colorado’s authentic western mountain towns.