Ski competition at Winter Park
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Ski competition at Winter Park

© Creative Commons / Ryan Holst

Winter Park resort information & après-ski

Après-ski

As the ski day ends, listen out for the steam train whistle that announces Derailer Bar at Winter Park mountain base is ready to serve up après-ski beer and drink specials.

Five Mountain Tavern in the Vintage Hotel (100 Winter Park Drive; tel: 1 800 472 7017; www.vintagehotel.com) at Winter Park mountain base features the Churchill Bar. Here, customers can even see where Winston Churchill burned the bar with his cigar. It serves cold beer, cocktails and hot toddies by the stone firepit on the patio and there's often live music.

Eating out

There are more than 40 restaurants in Winter Park and the nearby town of Fraser, with eight choices on the mountain or at the base of the slopes alone.

The Club Car restaurant at Mary Jane's base is a local favourite. It serves the signature Mount Mary Jane sandwich, seafood chowder and other hearty lunchtime staples.

Further out, there are steakhouses, sushi, tapas, delis, Mexican and pizza options. But, for a taste of the Old West, go to Smokin' Moe's Ribhouse and Saloon (Cooper Creek Square; tel: (970) 726 4600; smokinmoes.com). This eatery offers an Oklahoma-style barbecue and other traditional regional favourites.

Resort Information

Beyond the slopes

Most non-ski attractions are located in the nearby towns rather than the slopeside resort. Besides swimming pools and hot tubs in the resort’s recreation centre, most activities are outdoors.

On-snow alternatives to downhill sliding include snowshoe tours, snowcat tours, tubing, ice skating (two rinks), sleigh rides and dog sledding.

Worthwhile trips away from the ski area include Denver (about two hours away), which boasts a zoo, cinemas, ice hockey matches, museums, galleries and shopping. There’s also the Hot Sulphur Springs Resort (40 minutes away), where natural hot-springs fill several pools with water ranging from pleasantly warm to uncomfortably hot.

Family fun

The Kids' Ski and Ride School (tel: 1 800 420 8093) at the base of Winter Park provides nursery services for babies from two months old and ski school from age three. On the slopes, the Rendezvous Flats section of the Groswold's Discovery Park has fun, family-friendly features and easy terrain.

Off the slopes, the resort's friendly, relaxed atmosphere and affordable dining and accommodation is perfect for families. Daily free activities in The Village at Winter Park include mini rail jams, ‘Kids’ Night Out’ evening events and free ice skating lessons.

Retail therapy

There is a good range of shops in Winter Park and its base areas, and a greater choice in the town of Fraser.

Among the shops in The Village is Shirt Off My Back (125 Parry Peak Way; tel: (970) 726 5581), which sells resort-branded clothes and ski gear. Other gifts and souvenirs can be purchased from Trail’s End Mercantile in the Zephyr Mountain Lodge.

Fraser is home to the Fraser Valley Center, which is a good place to hunt down gifts and souvenirs. As well as skiwear and souvenir shops in the town, there are half a dozen art retailers.

Splashing out

Purchase a personalised trail map, which shows the particular routes skied during the day, how many miles, how much vertical and even how many calories have been burned. Just pick up a small GPS tracking unit from Guest Services in the Balcony House at the start of the day.

Content Parent

Hotels

Most accommodation in Winter Park is in spacious apartments along the road that cuts through Winter Park; while more stylish lodgings sit at the foot of the slopes in a mini-resort known as The Village. There are very few chalets and hotels in Winter Park itself, but there is a larger choice is Fraser.


Zephyr Mountain Lodge

(970) 726 8400.

Marketed as ‘the closest you can sleep to the ski lifts without sleeping outside', Zephyr Mountain Lodge offers luxury accommodation just 35m (110ft) from the base of the Zephyr Express chairlift.

Wild Horse Inn

(970) 726 0456.

This hand-hewn log lodge on the outskirts of Fraser has spectacular views, feather beds and hot tubs.

Snow Mountain Ranch

(970) 887 2152 or 1 800 777 9622.

This YMCA of the Rockies complex has a lodge and cabins close to Winter Park and provides affordable accommodation with a friendly atmosphere.

1101 Country Road 53, Granby, United States

Getting there and around

Getting there

Nearest airport: Denver International Airport (DEN).

Distance to resort: 108km (68 miles).

Driving time: 2 hours.

Getting around

Winter Park has a free shuttle service and a pedestrian walkway network, including a pedestrian bridge over the Fraser River between the car park and slopes.

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