As always, there’s a lot to see and do in the Gunnison-Crested Butte area, particularly this time of year. In addition to the world-class skiing at Crested Butte Mountain Resort, there are some great deals, activities and events going on now and coming up through Spring Break.
For a calendar of events in the area, go to www.gunnisoncrestedbutte.com/events. Here are some deals and activities to check into over the next few months…
Lodging, Lift Ticket and Flight Deals
From now through April 6 you get 25 percent off of lodging and lift tickets as well as a $100 airfare credit when flying into the Gunnison-Crested Butte Regional Airport (GUC). Book a Fly, Ski, Stay & Save package through Crested Butte Vacations and stay at Grand Lodge, Lodge at Mountaineer Square, Elevation Hotel & Spa and other properties in Mt. Crested Butte.
A minimum four-night stay is required and a maximum of four air credits per reservation is allowed (lift ticket purchase is required per air credit). The deal is subject to taxes, fees and availability. Call 800-810-7669 and visit www.skicb.com/deals.
Fourteen lodging properties in Gunnison and Almont, located south of Crested Butte, have teamed up with Crested Butte Mountain Resort to offer Gunnison Getaway ski packages. Prices at www.gunnisongetaway.com are the lowest available for regular season (Feb. 7 through March 23) and value season (March 24 through April 6). The price given is per person, per night and includes lift tickets (based on rates for adult, young adult and children). Rates are based on double occupancy and availability and do not include taxes.
Prices start at $49 per adult, per night for lodging and lift ticket during value season and $69 for regular season, both at Wanderlust Hostel. In Almont, Three Rivers Resort is offering a family-friendly lodge room featuring one bed, a futon, full bath and kitchenette for $66 per adult, per night during value season and $90 during peak season. Children are $53 during value season and $63 in peak season for the Three Rivers Resort deal.
The newly renovated Nordic Inn in Mt. Crested Butte is partnering with Crested Butte Nordic Center to offer lodging and free cross-country ski lessons, rental equipment and trail passes through the Ultimate Nordic Experience package.
For $92 per adult (ages 16 and older), per day, stay in a Signature King room (double occupancy required) with a daily breakfast and take a lesson on the first day and explore the more than 55 kilometers of pristine, groomed trails daily.
Families can stay in a larger double queen room for an extra $20 per night, and kids 15 and under receive free rentals, lessons and trail passes. Those who already know how to Nordic ski and have equipment receive free daily trail passes and $25 per person in Butte Bucks, which can be spent like cash in most Crested Butte business establishments.
This offer requires a minimum of two nights lodging and is good from now until April 6. To book, call 800-542-7669 and go to www.nordicinncb.com.
Snow Adventures with Animals
Horse-drawn sleigh rides and horseback riding with a stop to warm up with hot cocoa by the fire are offered by Fantasy Ranch Horseback Adventures, beginning and ending at Almont Resort. The one-horse open sleigh is perfect for family outings of up to four adults and two small children, with 30-minute rides available at 10 or 11 a.m. Horseback rides are at 1 p.m. Go to www.fantasyranchoutfitters.com or call 970-349-5425.
Dog sledding with Lucky Cat Dog Farm (www.luckycatdogfarm.com) offers two-hour tours as well as lunch tours.
Ski Crested Butte and More
At Crested Butte Mountain Resort (CBMR, www.skicb.com) skiing is free for kids age 6 and under with three new ski trails just for kids. Skiing and snowboarding instruction for youth and adults is available through CBMR as well as through Adaptive Sports Center (www.adapativesports.org) for family members with physical and/or cognitive disabilities.
The Adventure Park at CBMR is for all ages with covered miniature golf, bungee trampolines, a rock climbing wall and the CokeZero Gravity BagJump. Plus, there are full moon and daytime snowshoe tours and the Crested Butte Zip Line Tour, a guided adventure that includes five ziplines and three suspended bridges that have been uniquely adapted to be functional in winter.
There’s also child care for kids (beginning at two months old), and Kid’s Night Out from 4-8 p.m. for ages 4-12. Dinner, games and access to the Adventure Park are part of Kid’s Night Out activities.
The Trailhead Children’s Museum (www.trailheadkids.org) offers hands-on exhibits and programs in the arts, sciences and creative play for children and families and is conveniently located at the base of the ski area. The museum is open Wednesday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and other times for special events. Admission is $6 per person.
Family-Friendly Nordic Skiing
Access 55 kilometers of groomed Nordic skiing trails at the Crested Butte Nordic Center (www.cbnordic.org), located just a few blocks off downtown and on the free Mountain Express bus route.
In addition to selling trail passes, CBNC offers equipment rental (Nordic skis, snowshoes and ice skates), classic and skate skiing instruction, backcountry adventures and free ice skating on the covered rink.
Gunnison Nordic Club (www.gunnisonnordic.com) also provides high-quality groomed cross-country trails close to Gunnison, including several at Hartman Rocks Multi-Use Recreation Area.
Crested Butte Culture
At Crested Butte Mountain Heritage Museum (www.crestedbuttemuseum.com), find out more about the area’s skiing, ranching, mining and mountain biking history and local personalities, watch a working model train handcrafted to look like old-time Crested Butte and schedule a historic walking tour. Nearby, catch a concert, class or art exhibit at Center for the Arts Crested Butte (www.crestedbuttearts.org) and take in a theatre production presented by Crested Butte Mountain Theatre (www.cbmountaintheatre.org).
Families and winter sports enthusiast who look for a value ski vacation will enjoy the many deals offered by Gunnison Getaways at www.gunnisongetaway.com. Free bus service runs daily between the city of Gunnison and the towns of Crested Butte and Mt. Crested Butte, making it easy to get around the entire valley.
Gunnison Recreation Center’s entire facility is $4 for kids ages 5-17 and $6 for adults per day; kids under 5 are free. There is an indoor pool with slides, rock climbing wall, gym, gymnastics room and a game room.
At Jorgensen Park, there are three sheets of ice: an indoor NHL-size rink located at the Jorgenson Event Center, Shades for Blades outdoor Olympic-size covered rink, and Pacman Pond, ideal for young children. Skate rentals are available at the Event Center, and there is no cost to use the outdoor rink and pond. For information, visitwww.gunnisonrec.com.
The Gunnison Arts Center (www.gunnisonartscenter.org) also offers entertainment, exhibits and classes.
To save on flights, hotel rooms, vacation packages, car rentals and more, call the Gunnison-Crested Butte Tourism Association reservation hotline at 888-559-0841 or go to http://book.GunnisonCrestedButte.com. For destination information, call 800-814-8893, go to www.VisitGCB.com or find GCBTA on Facebook at www.facebook.com/gcbta.