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Top Tips for Skiing at Crested Butte: A Must-Read Before Hitting the Slopes

Mount Crested Butte, located in Gunnison County, is a charming mountain town in Colorado that offers various winter activities. This picturesque town is surrounded by majestic mountains, pristine forests, and beautiful valleys, which make it a perfect destination for skiing, dining, and activities.

Me skiing


Skiing in Mount Crested Butte

Mount Crested Butte is known for its exceptional skiing terrain, which attracts skiers worldwide. The ski resort has over 1,500 acres of skiable terrain, 121 trails, and a vertical drop of 3,062 feet. The mountain's base elevation is 9,375 feet, which guarantees an abundance of snowfall throughout the winter. The resort has a variety of terrain, catering to skiers of all levels. Beginners can take lessons at the ski school, while intermediate and advanced skiers can enjoy the challenging terrain.

I immensely enjoyed skiing at Crested Butte, and there were a lot of trails that would challenge me as a skier. The resort is about 50% black diamond + terrain, a little more than 25% blue, and the rest green. The advanced terrain includes many black diamond extreme trails, which can seem incredibly daunting. Those trails are also quite different; some are hike-to, and others are left accessible. Using that trail marker definition can mean various things regarding what you can expect on the trail. I would say that some extreme trails wouldn't classify as that because they are more than doable if you can do a black diamond At Mad River. However, with that being said, there are trails like their infamous Rambo, which are difficult for many reasons.

I could see myself skiing at this resort as my home mountain for the rest of my life because there were a lot of trails that I could work on and improve my skiing skills. The mountain lacks easier terrain for those who enjoy many groomers, but that isn't who they are trying to cater to. The mountain itself is more on the difficult side, which is why the terrain leads more towards advanced skiers. So that is something to note if you are a groomer skier; you might get bored with the lack of diversity in options. But it is also the same for if you are an advanced skier; you will more than likely not get bored with the amazing amount of diverse and challenging terrain.



Dining in Mount Crested Butte

Mount Crested Butte has a diverse dining scene catering to all tastes and budgets. After a long day on the ski slopes, you can refuel at one of the many restaurants in town. The Avalanche Bar & Grill, located at the ski resort's base, is a local favorite serving delicious burgers, sandwiches, salads, and various appetizers. For something more upscale, head to the Wooden Nickel, which has an excellent selection of cocktails, wine, and craft beer. The menu features classic American dishes, including steak, seafood, and pasta. Other notable restaurants in town include the Secret Stash, which has a unique pizza menu, and the Sunflower, which offers vegetarian and gluten-free options.

The paradise, warming house, right outside the paradise lift, is the mountain lodge we spent every single lunchtime at. There was ample seating for the crowd, and I loved that it gave Mad River Glen vibes. It was highly family-friendly, and they allowed people to bring their lunches and eat inside. This is pretty rare at most popular resorts now, so I love that you saw families eating their peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. It just creates this feeling of acceptance at the resort. We ended up getting french fries every day, but we would bring our soup in a thermos, and being able to do that and eat inside was fantastic.

The food pricing is also much lower than I've seen at the other epic resorts. I expected higher prices because it was a mid-mountain lodge, and those are usually more expensive. However, I was pleasantly surprised. The food options were. Also, there were your basics, and the fry seasoning they use is so delicious and a complete must-try.

The peak of Crested Butte


Activities in Mount Crested Butte

Apart from skiing, Mount Crested Butte has various winter activities that can keep you entertained for days. Snowmobiling is a popular activity in the area, with several companies offering guided tours. These tours take you through the stunning Colorado backcountry, where you'll see breathtaking views of the mountains and forests. Another popular activity is snowshoeing, an excellent way to explore the area's winter wonderland. You can rent snowshoes and explore the many trails around the town. If you're feeling adventurous, try ice climbing, a thrilling way to experience the mountains. Local guides can take you to the best ice-climbing spots. For a more relaxed activity, try dog sledding, a fun way to experience the mountains while enjoying the company of friendly huskies.

The town of Crested Butte is exceptionally photogenic and adorable. It is worth going into town to look at the buildings. Driving around the town is problematic because it wasn't designed for the size of vehicles we have today, but people make it work. There aren't any chain stores in the town, so other than the gas station, which was mobile, there weren't any fast food restaurants or significant grocery store chains, which added to the charm of the town. The prices are slightly higher at the grocery store than if you shop in a bigger city and bring your groceries, so that is something to know if you are on a tight budget.

Steep Trails


Accommodations in Mount Crested Butte

Mount Crested Butte offers various accommodations catering to all budgets and preferences. The ski resort has several lodges and hotels, including the Elevation Hotel & Spa, located at the ski resort's base. The hotel offers ski-in/ski-out access, an outdoor hot tub, and a full-service spa. Other notable accommodations in town include The Grand Lodge, which has a heated indoor pool and hot tubs, and The Lodge at Mountaineer Square, which offers luxurious accommodations and stunning mountain views.

For this trip, we stayed at an Airbnb across the road from the resort, and it was about a 15-minute walk, which I was not going to do in ski boots. I'm going to be walking half a mile in my boots. It's going to be for a trail that I want to ski. Luckily, a bus line ran to the condos we were staying at right into the base area. This made it extremely easy to get to the resort; you can see more on the buses in the parking section of this blog.

Crested Butte


Parking at and around the resort

I am utterly obsessed with the parking situations at all resorts, primarily because I am not staying at most resorts I visit, meaning I have to drive there and park there. Crested Butte has one of the better parking situations I have seen at the Epic Mountains. They have a paid parking lot, which is extremely close to the chairlift but is within walking distance, so that is something to keep in mind if you have trouble walking on slippery surfaces. They also have a free parking lot just down the road that is a staircase away from the chair lift, and I find that incredible. The biggest thing about the resort is its free buses. I will link the bus schedule right here. Many different lines run from town, and the other condos around the resort are all free, which is impressive in itself. I noticed that most people did not drive to the resort. They parked in town, and they took one of the buses.

Additionally, I noticed a bus going between the resort and the town of Gunnison. This is a complete plus if you plan on attending college and would not need a car to get to the resort.

Snowy Mountain


Mount Crested Butte is a perfect destination for those seeking adventure and relaxation during winter. This charming mountain town is an ideal winter getaway with its exceptional skiing terrain, diverse dining scene, exciting activities, and comfortable accommodations. So, pack your bags and head to Mount Crested Butte for an unforgettable winter vacation.

The peak


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