With summer’s arrival, there is plenty to savor up on Snowmass and Aspen Mountain: pristine views, knee-deep wildflowers, trails twisting through the trees and tons of free activities. And in Snowmass Village and Aspen, the endless fun completes the picture and makes our slice of the Rocky Mountains a paradise for summer vacations.
Here are the top 10 reasons to see the summer side of Aspen Snowmass.
1. Gondola Rides
Our gondolas are the perfect way to quickly climb a mountain and get your day going. Running every day between mid-June to early September, the Elk Camp and Silver Queen Gondolas access free outdoor activities, miles of trails and delectable on-mountain dining. And the views from the gondolas seems to be different every day: Melting snow gives way to green grass and blooming flowers, all before the hues of autumn take over on September weekends.
Once you’ve arrived at the Sundeck, your options include (but are not limited to) disc golf, naturalist-led hikes, an obstacle course for kids, live music and crafts. And at Elk Camp, a climbing wall, Eurobungy and lawn games are added to the roster. No matter which mountain you choose, you’re assured a great time.
What do we do with all this warm sunshine? Well, we invite everybody over and have some fun. Concerts, food festivals, endurance races, historic tours, farmers’ markets, ballet performances and special dinners are just some of the ways we choose to celebrate the season.
Snowmass Bike Park encompasses much of the Elk Camp section of Snowmass in summer, offering 2,897 vertical feet of purpose-built downhill trails, including the technical challenges of the three V’s: Viking, Vapor, and Valhalla. But the bike park is not just for gearheads. Several beginner trails are ideal for families and those just starting out. Come cruise through the forests and meadows and see for yourself.
When you Google “Colorado mountains” you often see an image of the Maroon Bells — twin summits, striped with a little snow, sitting perfectly reflected above a pristine lake. Few sights in America are as stirring as these 14,000-foot peaks just south of Aspen. But the entire wilderness that surrounds these peaks offers hikers and backpackers some of the most sublime scenery in the entire Rocky Mountains. Get an introduction to the area with our Perfect Summer Package which includes a guided bus tour to Maroon Lake.
For a child vacationing at Aspen Snowmass in summer, we offer the perfect time and place to foster a lifelong love of the outdoors. It is with that mission in mind that we tailor our programming at Camp Aspen Snowmass. From ages 3 to 18, kids can explore mountain biking, go on a nature hike, build a model rocket or try something radical, like mountainboarding. Just imagine the stories they will share with friends when they return home.
And besides: sometimes, Mom and Dad just need a day to themselves.
Every Tuesday from July 11 and August 15, we welcome you to join us at Elk Camp Restaurant for a night to remember. Take a free gondola ride up to the restaurant, savor Colorado’s best ingredients on a locally focused menu, enjoy outdoor games and activities, and live music as you roast s’mores around the outdoor firepits.
The Roaring Fork River is the heart and soul of the valley. Home to a variety of hungry trout, full of hidden alcoves to explore, and flush with snowmelt, this beautiful river seems designed for leisure. Rent a stand-up paddleboard and explore the lazy section just upstream from town, or play Go Fish with the rainbows and browns near Basalt. You’ll soon see why locals so fervently adore this river.
Put the fat tires aside for a minute, and consider Aspen Snowmass’ other opportunities for self-propelled, two-wheeled fun. Start with the Rio Grande Trail, which is a 42-mile paved bike path that lines the Roaring Fork River for nearly its entire length. Or, head up Maroon Creek Road and pedal through the aspens to views of the iconic Maroon Bells. Or, look east to Independence Pass. For serious cyclists, this Tour de France-style climb has been a rite of passage for decades.
But no matter your intensity level, we can all agree on one thing: it’s hard to beat a simple cruise around Aspen on a summer’s evening.