She wants to ski. You want to river raft and bike. You’ve been (gently) brawling over this subject since you got engaged. Then, of course, you had to wait for your honeymoon — because of the pandemic. That long pause just threw more fuel into the fire. Suddenly you had way too much time to duke it out. “I want snow,” she had said, with that pout you can’t resist. “I need sun, thawed out trails and unbridled rapids” you answered. In the end, you never reached a compromise. Instead, you’d stop arguing and make some pasta to make up. Channeling your inner Stanley Tucci together never fails to result in good relationship success. Cooking will quell any argument — for a spell.
But, yesterday, she came home, her face aglow. She threw off her mask, and said she found the perfect solution. Breckenridge Ski Resort stays open through Memorial Day for skiing and riding. Ski or ride one day, then road bike or river raft the next. A win-win.
When you pick up the phone to make the reservations, things only get better. It turns out that United Airlines now “flies” to Breckenridge directly. What that means is that you’ll be picked up on the tarmac by a VIP vehicle at Denver International Airport, and whisked by luxury automobile to the hip, mountain hamlet in Summit County, located not far from Vail. You can organize this online, easy as pie. This one-time goldminer’s town, now a ski lover’s mecca was already on your radar for its wide-open spaces, athletic possibilities, Victorian architecture and cool culture — a trove of locally-owned businesses, breweries, bakeries galleries and unique dining options. Its five main peaks extend almost as high as 13,000 feet and spread to encompass 2,908 skiable acres with 187 variously marked trails. In the warmer months, Breckenridge’s wildflower-flecked meadows and sun-dappled mountain trails (and environs) invite hiking, biking, fly fishing, river rafting, yoga al fresco and rumination on any number of age-old rocks. Either season, the mountain air promises a wellness tonic of fresh air and extreme wellbeing.
But where to stay? Breckenridge’s laid-back vibe might not be the over-the-top honeymoon some couples envision. But, you two are doers, movers, shakers — you don’t want to lie around a pool, at least not all day. You’re happy with the rustic chic offerings of this popular ski town. You plan to do a few nights at Francie’s Cabin, located four miles south of Breckenridge, in the Crystal Lakes Basin area first — to get away from it all. As Colorado’s most storied hut, it can be accessed in the backcountry relatively easily, via all levels of terrain. That’s good — a challenge, but not too much of a challenge. You love the idea of being deep in the woods with one another — and nobody else around. Francie’s wood burning stove, fully equipped kitchen and sauna adds to the allure. You’ve even found an outfitter willing to drop off a few surprises for her — like rose petals strewn across the mattress and a chilled bottle of champagne. After a few days amid remote nature, you plan to check into The Lodge at Breckenridge, one of the world’s highest altitude hotels, set at 10,200 feet, atop a forested cliff. You book the spacious Sunlight Peak Suite for its views. Swoon.
And, how to organize all of your activities? She’s already called the fine folks at Breckenridge Outfitters for fly fishing, Colorado Adventure Guides for everything from cycling to ice climbing, Breckenridge Whitewater for rafting and zip lining — and Breckenridge Ski Resort’s own encyclopedic-level mountain guides for ski and ride lessons, so you’re set. Now, all you need to do is wait for May.