DAY HIKING AND THE SIMPLE LIFE
A TRAIL, A PACE OF LEISURE, A DAY WELL SPENT
It’s such a simple activity to do that lots of people forget all about day hiking. They hang out on the porch watching the day go by and wonder why there is nothing to do. Nothing to do? Come On! Take a hike!
The local list of great trails is extensive. Not sure about Where To Hike? How about Fish Creek Falls, Spring Creek, Emerald Mountain, Sarvis Creek, Mount Werner, Mad Creek, Silver Creek, Rabbit Ears Pass, Buffalo Pass…. Nothing to do? No where to go? Are you sure?
The simplicity of the day hike is its greatest appeal. There is barely a gear list. In facet, What To Take can be as simple as some adequate Footwear, a shirt, and a water bottle. Your gear list will vary with the trails you decide to hike and how long you plan to stay out.
The skills required for day hiking are practically nonexistent. A little common sense, an awareness of your surroundings (including watching the skies for Lightning) and some motivation are just about all you need.
Ski Haus has everything you need to hit the trail for a day. We have a great selection of maps, water bottles, hiking boots, rain gear, day packs, sunscreen, film, socks, shoe laces, guide books, shorts, t-shirts, hats, waist packs, hydration packs, sunglasses, snacks, food, drinks… heck we’ll go hiking for you if you want!
DAY HIKING SUGGESTIONS
Fish Creek Falls: This trail is used a lot but there are ways to hike this trail without feeling the crush. Start early in the morning or start later in the afternoon. Hike this trail on weekdays and avoid the weekend crowds. Having said that we’ve probably scared you off but this trail is worth it. It offers super easy access, great views of the valley, and a great alpine feel without having to go to a great effort. Take 3rd Street to Fish Creek Falls Road, drive to main parking lot and trailhead. $3 parking fee.
Rabbit Ears Pass:
The Pass offers wonderful hiking and wildflower viewing opportunities. Rabbit Ears Peak, Walton Peak, The Continental Divide Trail and tons of alpine lakes are all available to the day hiker.In the winter, Rabbit Ears, is a cross country skiers paradise and hiking the familiar ski trails offers a good time for the bushwhacking hiker. From Steamboat Springs drive east on Highway 40 for twenty to 30 minutes. A wildflower mecca!
Silver Creek – Sarvis Creek:
Both these trails are located in the Sarvis Creek Wilderness. They are out and back type trails for the day hiker. This wilderness area is a little unusual for Colorado because the entire wilderness area is below treeline. There are still wonderful vistas to be had and following the cool flowing creeks gives lots of opportunities for the hiker to pause and enjoy. To reach Silver Creek take Highway 40 from Steamboat Springs to Highway 131. Turn South on 131 and turn left on CR 14. Follow 14 to Stagecoach Reservoir and turn left on CR16. Drive approx. 8 mlies up CR 16 and watch for the trailhead off of CR 16 on the left. To reach Sarvis Creek follow the same directions but before you reach Stagecoach turn left on the Stagecoach Dam Access Road and follow that down to the trailhead. Both of these trails require a bit of driving and if you are not sure of the directions take a Delorme Gazetteer for Colorado or ask us for directions!
Located in the Flat Tops Wilderness, the Devils Causeway gets its name from a tiny rock crossing that drops away hundreds of feet on either side. Not for the faint of heart, this trail is spectacular with it’s alpine setting and big climbs. This hike offers a superior loop hike but be ready for an all day affair. To reach the Causeway, take Highway 40 to 131. South on 131 to the town of Yampa. Follow CR 7 to Stillwater Reservoir. The trail starts here.
These are only a scratch on the surface of available trails for the hiker in Steamboat Springs. Ski Haus stocks a huge selection of guide books and maps for our area.
Give us a call, email us, or stop on in! We’ll be happy to help you plan your hike and help you with your gear list.
WHAT TO TAKE
Extra clothing: prepare for bad weather even on the nice days.
Extra food: hiking builds an appetite, bring lots of food, snacks, and water.
Sunglasses: protect those eyes!
Knife or Leatherman: an especially important tool for repairs and emergencies.
Fire starter: we’ve heard of lots of day hikes that turn into overnights.
First Aid Kit: fail to plan, plan to fail.
Matches: Fire starter isn’t worth beans without a spark
Flashlight: good for late night returns to the car.
Maps: buy a map to see where you’re going, not where you’ve been.
Compass: North, South, East, West, all looks pretty much the same in the dark. This is not a comprehensive list but only a few of the necessary items that should be in every day hikers pack. Cameras, field guides, walking staff, rain gear, hat, sunscreen etc. the list can be big. Pick and choose what is right for you and your hike.
The Ski Haus bike department is built around our employees. The bikes we stock on our retail floor are a direct result of the riding styles our guys love.
Within our staff we have riders who push the limits of skill and speed on punishing downhill trails.
Their riding is a balancing act along the fine line of a successful run and a series of major disasters narrowly averted.
Ski Haus is staffed by riders who love challenging hill climbs as much as they love fast descents.
Crosscountry riders have big country in mind and even bigger mileage. When you’re on an epic cross country ride expect lung debilitating climbs, technical descents, and probably, find yourself a long, long way from home. Use your energy wisely and make sure you have enough to complete the ride home.
Ski Haus also has riders who prefer more air time to trail time. These dirt jumping-freeride fanatics continue their winter halfpipe fun all summer by searching out jumps and drops and their high flying skills are second to none.
Others find themselves on the road. Road bikes. The essence of human powered sustained speed. These lightweight machines accelerate like no other. The trick is to be smooth and strive for efficiency. Whether you are out for an hour lunchtime ride with a friend, or out to climb a couple passes with the peloton, the goal is the same… Have some fun, generate some power, and see amongst your riding partners who will start to push the pace first.
Now don’t get the wrong idea. Not all the riding is hardcore all the time. Commuting to work is an easy way to log some miles while doing yourself, your checkbook, and the environment some good. Commuting is not work and it is not part of the work day but it sure makes the work day nicer.
And once the summer sun begins to set and the hot temperatures of the day begin to cool, it’s a perfect time to launch the cruisers for an evening ride around town. No hands, riding a cruiser with a double-dip cone dripping down your fingers… Who said they have a problem with summer?
Stop by Ski Haus and take a look at all the bikes we have in stock. We have bikes that range from comfortable town cruisers to 700c touring bikes to full suspension mountain bikes that will smooth out the toughest trails of Colorado.
Ski Haus has an excellent full service repair shop and the best selection of biking accessories to make every ride memorable. Ride hard. Ride often. Ride on.
ONE LESS CAR
Where to road ride in and around Steamboat Springs:
Thinking about joining the brotherhood of commuters? You’ve seen them riding their bikes to work, the market, to school, everywhere.
For a long time, from behind your windshield, you have seen these bike riders starting their day with some fresh air, exercise, and dedication. You also noticed that these same commuters are the ones who show up to work with the best attitudes. Hummm. Interesting.
What do you need to get started on your daily commute? First, don’t try to make it daily. Thinking of riding to work everyday can sound too tough. Start with a Tuesday and then ride again on Thursday. By the time next week rolls around you will be missing the morning ride and will want to ride Monday, Wednesday and Friday. The following week you might even want to ride all five days.
Here are a few tips to help you get started:
– Pick a route. The same route that you drive to work may not be the best way to ride your bike. Find the bike paths (both paved and the hidden dirt trail gems).
– Use a Messenger Bag for your change of clothes, lunch, bike lock, etc. These bags are super comfortable to ride with.
– If your work doesn’t offer a shower, bird bath it in the restroom. A small hand towel, deodorant, maybe some type of handiwipe is all you need.
– Fenders on your commuter rig might be nice but not required. For wet weather, use the same clothing you would wear day hiking in the rain. It all crosses over.
– You will find that your morning schedule stays about the same. Riding to work usually takes about the same amount of time as warming up the car, stopping at traffic lights, or trying to make a left turn downtown, etc.
– Always ride with your helmet strapped to your head.
The hardest thing about commuting on your bike is getting started. Once you get the action going it just gets easier and easier. Start your riding as soon as you can in the spring. Don’t let a little wind, cold, and rain get in your way.
Good commuting habits are easy to keep, it’s just a matter of developing them.
Where to road ride in Steamboat Springs:
Rabbit Ears Pass
Twenty Mile Road
Oak Creek Canyon
Yellow Jacket-Oak Creek Canyon Loop
County Road 129 to Clark
River Road to 131 to 40 and back to the ‘Haus!
Highway 40 to Milner, Hayden, Craig, Maybell
Ski Haus to Lake Catamount
A Few of Our Favorite Mountain Bike Trails
Hot Springs Loop: An early season favorite because it’s one of the first to dry out from the previous winter snows and it’s easy to ride from town. The ride begins with an easy spin out Strawberry Park but climbs steeply up Copper Ridge. Pick up the single track once you pass the Hot Springs. (A big temptation is just to stop here and soak.) The trail is nice but some sections slope wildly towards the creek. Some good riding skills will keep you dry here. Descend the single track to RCR 129 and spin the pavement back to town. approx. 16 miles.
Mad Creek: Another great ride that is easy to ride from town In fact, where the Hot Springs trail hits RCR 129, the Mad Creek Trail is only up the road a bit so this is easy way lengthen your ride if you like. Start climbing from the get-go on the Swamp Park / Mad Creek Trail 1100. Continue past the Forest Service gate, past the Saddle Trail inersection, past the Mad Barn, and up to the Mount Zirkel Wilderness Boundary. Return to trailhead via the same route. Several options exist here to lenghten your ride and to avoid hikers and horsepackers. 8 miles.
Mount Werner: Riding on the ski hill offers great single track, two track, and dirt road riding. Access is either by riding from the bottom or take the lifts up. Favorite trails are Zig Zag, Creekside,Valley View, and Pete’s Wicked Trail. Helmets are required.
A few important links for you to follow:
(local grass-roots organization that promotes all types of bike riding)
Looking for a few rides in the Steamboat Springs area? Check out Steamboat Single Tracks. It’s the definitive guide for mountain biking in our area. $10.95
Sheraton Steamboat Golf Club is a Robert Trent Jones II designed golf course and opened for 18-hole play in the summer of 1974. The surface consists of bentgrass/poa annua greens and bluegrass/ryegrass fairways and roughs. Sixty-six fairway and greenside sand bunkers come into play on all 18 holes, with almost 70% of them protecting the large, undulating greens. Water hazards appear throughout the course in the form of a small strategic lake on holes #8 and #9 and the scenic Fish Creek flows through six of the holes. Aged aspen and evergreen trees shape the majority of holes on this magnificent layout, enhancing this unique pristine setting. Built on a parcel in excess of one hundred fifty acres, this championship-caliber course provides the player with stunning panoramic views. While currently carrying a slope rating from the back tees consistent with the top Colorado courses, it maintains comfortable playing characteristics from the less difficult teeing areas and can be enjoyed by players of all skill levels. With full turf coverage for generous landing areas, the Sheraton Steamboat Golf Course is an attractive alternative to some of the target course designs that other mountain golf courses offer, adding to its popularity.
Along the flanks of Mt. Werner, the course is complete with tumbling streams, dramatic tee shots and the demands of golf in all its facets. The bluegrass/ryegrass fairways are framed by aspens and evergreens on most of the holes. Changes in elevation will test even the best shot maker. Even as your shots are challenged by rolling bentgrass/poa annua greens and sixty-six bunkers, the stunning views of the Flat Top Mountains and the Yampa Valley are guaranteed to take your mind off your score, at least for a few minutes!
Sheraton Steamboat Resort web site
Haymaker, classic links style golf in a mountain setting, represents a bit of Scotland here in the spectacular Yampa Valley. Entering our ninth season of play, this public access course features rolling fairways, deep bunkers, meandering streams, and surrounding native grasses, all in a setting bordered by mountains.
Selected in 1998 as one of Golf Digest’s “Best New Courses”, Haymaker has recently been accepted as an Audubon Signature Course. Having been labeled an “environmental wonder”, Haymaker continues to gain state recognition, receiving Golf Digest’s “Top 20″ courses to play in Colorado.
Haymaker Golf Course web site
Golf has two essential dimensions:
the game – cast in ritual and tradition, and the course – the great variable. At Catamount Ranch & Club, Members play the majestic Tom Weiskopf signature course, as distinctive as the high country that shaped its design. If the essence of the game is challenge, playing at Catamount Ranch & Club is its best reward. The course complements its setting so perfectly, it might have been found instead of made. This is no ordinary course.
Catamount Ranch & Club Website
Steamboat is actually a complete mountain range: Mount Werner, Sunshine Peak, Storm Peak, Thunderhead Peak, Pioneer Ridge® and Christie Peak. 2,939 acres (1176 hectares) of permitted terrain offer a diversity of trails for all levels of ability, including groomed cruisers, celebrated bumps and breathtaking steep descents.
Mavericks Superpipe, the longest on the continent, is a freerider’s dream. Mavericks is 650 feet long, 50-feet wide, has 15 foot walls, and a 17 foot radius. Steamboat’s SoBe terrain park adjacent to Mavericks, features an outdoor sound system, a variety of rails; kinked, sliders, rainbows, “S”, mailboxes, double barrel, and Mini-Mav, a miniature version of the superpipe with five-foot walls, perfect for novice riders.
Gladed areas of Pioneer Ridge, Sunshine and Storm Peak are Steamboat’s particular claim to fame, with Champagne Powder® snow in the trees for the most avid powder hounds.
Howelsen Hill Ski Area holds a unique place in the history of skiing. It has sent more skiers to international competition than any other area in North America. Howelsen Hill boasts a remarkable heritage. It is the oldest ski area in continuous use in Colorado, and has the largest and most complete natural ski jumping complex in North America. Howelsen has been the training ground for more than 50 Olympians making over 90 Winter Olympic appearances, 15 members of the Colorado Ski Hall of Fame & 6 members of the National Ski Hall of fame.
Our groomed cross country ski and snowshoe trails, winding through the aspen groves and along beautiful Fish Creek, offers some of the most enjoyable and accessible wintertime recreation in the Yampa Valley.
Groomed cross country ski trails. Our trails welcome all ability levels, novice to advanced. The trails are groomed for both classic and skate skiing.
Groomed snowshoe trails. 10 km of beautiful forested snowshoe trails.
Our rental shop has the latest in cross-country ski equipment. Our ski school specializes in teaching all the basic techniques and how to ski most efficiently. Lessons offered daily. After one lesson you will be able to enjoy a variety of trails!
Steamboat Powdercats provides a welcome alternative to the traditional ski resort experience. We offer untracked powder conditions, snow cat transportation and a full service environment that allow our guests to indulge in their powder skiing and snowboarding fantasies.
Located just north of the Steamboat Ski Area in Steamboat Springs, Colorado, our exclusive U.S. Forest Service permit area on Buffalo Pass annually receives 500+ inches of Steamboat’s famous Champagne Powder. Three luxury snow cats provide transportation for 36 guests per day in our 10,000 acre ski terrain. Our runs cater to guests of intermediate, advanced and expert ability, and we separate guests depending on ability level.
Along with the 8-16 powder filled runs, we will spoil you rotten with a light breakfast and full catered lunch, powder ski or snowboards, avalanche beacon rental, full photography service and 3 experienced backcountry guides to show you the way. The trip is a full day from 7:30 am till 4:30 pm.
Visit our website at www.steamboatpowdercats.com or all us at 800-288-0543 or locally at 970-871-4260 so we can get you deep in the powder tomorrow.