The temperatures are finally dipping after the long hot summer days. As I sat and sipped my steaming hot coffee this morning while I watched the sun come up, I felt those first feelings of cozying up for winter. It made me start thinking on the transition and change of seasons and how each prepares us for the next. I think this is why the changes in season feel so delicious, why we love spring and fall.
This morning, I stuck my feet in my sheepskin slippers for the first time since spring and wrapped up in a blanket. I contemplated turning on the heat, but couldn’t bring myself to do it yet.
One undeniable thing about fall is that the colors and cool crisp air are beautiful, and, it is a great time to getaway for a weekend of leaf peeping. And, since Denver’s forecast predicts snow Thursday, these gorgeous leaves won’t be with us long!
As you all know, if you’ve been around us a while here at Snow Happy, one of our happy places is Steamboat Springs, about 3 hours NW of Denver. And, while we love the deepest of powder days there, Steamboat is amazing any time of year. The beauty of “shoulder season” is that it is SO quiet. No reservations or waits for restaurants, and the trails are empty.
Steamboat Springs offers something for everyone from shopping and dining to outdoor adventure. And, with its lower elevation, it enjoys a longer warm season. You won’t go wrong no matter how you start your weekend getaway, but our most recent one started at Powder Day Donuts.
Confession time: I do not love donuts. And, I know what you’re thinking – that’s insanity, you just haven’t found a good one. While, I guess I hadn’t…until now. These donuts even I liked and kept going back to the box for more. The cake was light and not greasy tasting and frosted just right. The plain is heaven with a steaming cup of coffee and a nice view. And, something super cool, they feature a non-profit of the week! Each week, a different organization in the community receives a $1 of the “non-profit special” sold that week! We love local companies that give back to their community. They are located at 10th and Lincoln and happen to be right next door to the Ski Locker co-working space, (which, by the way, if you have to get in some work for the day, Snow Happy husband gives it a thumbs up).
We are lucky enough to have friends with a place just out of town, but there are so many options for lodging: on the mountain resort area, in town, and more remote areas in the valley. If you like to bike, the core trail stretches from one end of Steamboat to another and runs right through downtown, making for beautiful rides to enjoy a meal in town. Or, for the more adventurous types, bike out your back door for some world-class mountain biking. You will not be disappointed!
The Yampa and Elk rivers are also spectacular places to spend a few hours on a warm sunny day. Try your hand at fly fishing, tubing or just splashing around. And, if you’re staying at the resort, don’t miss Bergen Creek that runs along the base of the mountain. Needing a taste of lake life? Venture north of town to Steamboat Lake. There is a sandy beach and a marina with a variety of motorized and non-motorized boat rentals. We always opt to bring the paddle-boards!
Some other things our kids love to do in Steamboat is visit the botanical gardens, Bud Werner Memorial Library, Old Town Hot Springs pool and Strawberry Hot Springs.
If you decide to head out to eat to fuel up for your day or relax after a day of adventure, we highly recommend Creekside, Winonas, Taco Cabo, Rex’s (it’s in the Holiday Inn, but just trust me on this one), Laundry and Seedz.
Oh, and that leaf-peeping? You don’t have to look very far! The valley is spectacular from any view! But, the Steamboat Chamber recommends a few locations.
So, get out there and take in the splendor of this season while you anxiously await the first snowfall (or your second or third depending on where you live). Appreciate the transition, breath in the cool crisp air while the sun is still warm on your back. Find joy in the change!