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Telluride Ski Day

January 29, 2014

Telluride is hands-down the most beautiful place I’ve ever skied.

Telluride

With high, rugged terrain surrounded by jagged peaks, it’s a truly special mountain with much different scenery than my home mountains of Vail and Beaver Creek.

Telluride

And on this particular weekend, it was spectacularly sunny.

Telluride

So how did I come to be in this ski paradise?  I actually visited Telluride on a work trip.  I know, it’s a tough job, but somebody’s got to do it.  I’ve always loved this gorgeous corner of Colorado but had never visited during the winter.  So I was thrilled at the opportunity for a Telluride ski trip.  We stayed at the gorgeous The Peaks Resort and Spa.  Along with being an absolutely beautiful luxury property, it had the added advantage of being ski-in/ski-out.

Ski in ski out Telluride

Even though it’s not exactly a hassle to get from my house to the lifts on a typical ski day, this kind of access just makes it over-the-top easy.  After a leisurely morning and a quick breakfast in the hotel’s coffee shop, we literally took an elevator down to the slopes.  Then a short run took us to a chairlift to access the rest of Telluride’s terrain.  On the way, we took in a great view of The Peaks – the large white hotel looked a little like a château to me.

The Peaks Telluride

After another chairlift ride, we had all of Telluride’s terrain at our fingertips.  It is an even bigger mountain than I’d been expecting and we didn’t know where to begin.  Luckily, I was able to employ one of my favorite tips for skiing a new-to-you mountain by asking the ski instructor sitting next to us on the chair for some areas to explore.   We headed to the Chair 5 area to warm up on some blue cruisers en route to our next stop.

Telluride

We weren’t even at the top of the mountain yet, but I already couldn’t stop snapping photos.  Between the nonstop natural beauty and the fact that I got a rare ski day with this guy, who typically works on the weekends, I was grinning from ear to ear.

Telluride

From there, we headed to the top of the mountain, where the runs got steep and the views opened up for miles.

Telluride views

Here, we made our biggest miscalculation of the day, when I just couldn’t resist skiing this chute that we saw from the chairlift.

Telluride chute

Looks nice, right?  It was also a literal rock field at the top, and once we started down it we couldn’t get out or avoid skiing straight over rocks.  I think I heard my skis crying.  Anyway, once we made it down, we returned to the top of the mountain in hopes of finding some rockless snow.  And we definitely found it.  Revelation Bowl turned out to be one of my favorite parts of the mountain.

Revelation Bowl Telluride

Revelation Bowl is on the back side of Telluride, and while the runs are short, the views are even more spectacular than those on the front.

Revelation Bowl Telluride

At this point it was late morning, and the sun had softened up the bumps to the point of perfection.  I took a couple of laps on Bee’s Run, a short bump run that was one of my favorites of the day.

Bee's Run Telluride

Although I could have skied Revelation Bowl (don’t you love that name?) all day, we decided to keep exploring after a few more runs.  We had a lot of mountain to ski before 4 p.m.

Telluride

From there, we set out to explore and skied almost the entire mountain.  The only chairlifts that we missed were the ones on the side of the mountain where you can ski down to the town of Telluride, and we didn’t even realize we’d missed them until we went to town the next day!

Telluride

In addition to loving the phenomenal scenery, I enjoyed the variety of terrain, fun steeps and well-groomed cruisers that Telluride had to offer.  Even the long catwalk that we accidentally found ourselves skiing down was kind of fun.  The knock-out views toward the top and the zillion-dollar homes toward the bottom kept me entertained the whole time.

Telluride

Another area we loved was Prospect Peak.  This chair serves some of the highest terrain on the mountain, including some hike-to runs that looked like they would have been worth the hike on a powder day.  We took a short break at the top of Prospect to bask in the sunshine in some perfectly placed Adirondack chairs.

Prospect Peak

The views and the runs in this area were equally delicious – I highly recommend it all.

Telluride

Overall, there are a few things that make Telluride a spectacular place to ski, in my opinion.  First of all, it was blissfully un-crowded, even on Martin Luther King, Jr. weekend when the resorts along the I-70 corridor are typically mobbed.  I’d imagine that Telluride’s remote location keeps crowds manageable all season long.  Second, we loved the fabulously steep terrain that the San Juan Mountains provide (and don’t worry, there’s plenty of mellow terrain too).  And the overwhelming factor that made Telluride a memorable mountain for me was the phenomenal scenery that I’ve mentioned 600 times already.  I still don’t feel like I’ve done it justice though!

So, where’s the prettiest place you’ve ever skied?

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9 Comments leave one →
  1. January 30, 2014 5:18 am

    Looks fantastic – the mountain scenery is just beautiful. I have got to do that US ski trip sometime soon!

  2. January 30, 2014 9:01 am

    Whistler/Blackcomb is pretty awesome when the weather is right.

    • January 30, 2014 10:13 am

      That’s on my bucket list for sure! I’ve never skied outside the US and need to change that soon. Not too soon with this awesome snow that’s rolling in again though!

      • January 30, 2014 2:20 pm

        no they arent having a good year and it should be epic tomorrow

Trackbacks

  1. The Peak of Perfection | Peaks and Passports
  2. Luxury Lodging in Telluride | Peaks and Passports
  3. A Day in Ouray | Peaks and Passports
  4. My Peaks of 2014 – Year in Review | Peaks and Passports

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