Take seat! Grab a hot tea, cup of coffee or glass of wine and nestle in by the fire for my Telluride tell all. It’s going to be a senic treat I assure you.
Not to mention home of the Coors Light blue mountains…the only beer Mr. Chicken FRY DRINKS!! (we should own stock)
The town of Telluride bottoms out inside a box canyon. Panoramic mountain scapes line the rectangualr town and put on quite a show when dusted with a blanket of snow. In my 46 years I have spent a chunk of time in the Colorado Rockies skiing and or watching lacrosse. The quality mountain valleys of Vail, Copper, Breckenridge, Pagosa Springs, Durango, Aspen, and Beaver Creek are certainly all note worthy and fab places to visit but I think I’ll hang my hat in Telluride.
Telluride, Colorado came highly recommended. In fact, to date, I have not heard a single negative word about this striking town. It was literally as if we had just stepped into the secret society of ski resorts. It was not bustling with crowds but it wasn’t a ghost town. It was robust with small town feel. Mr. Chicken Fry put it to words…”It’s like being at a private golf course verses a public course.” The class of people from staff to locals to visitors was on par.
Not to mention there is something in Telluride for everyone. If you’re a Summer activist such as golf, tennis, hiking, biking, river rafting, picture taking, running or whatever else…it’s alive and well in Telluride. If you care to appreciate art, create art, make art, or shop for art it’s there too. If your vibe is more to relax, spa, shop, rest and repeat, the mountains of Telluride will soothe you. If you want to soak in fresh air, sun bathe without humidity, write a book, read a book, induldge in people watching it’s there. If you like to ice skate, snowboard, snow ski, ski bike, wine and dine this town will make your dreams come true. If you are a wildlife watcher, prepare for so many critters. If you are into live music, movie festivals, or you want to start a new hipster life…take yourself to Telluride.
Fun facts: Telluride is home to several celebrities such as Oprah and Tom Cruise who are practically locals. On the drive from Montrose we passed The DoubleR Ranch home of Ralph Lauren. His fence line spans 8 plus miles and is grandiose as you can imagine.
Our snowy vaca fell over Christmas break. On the Eve of Christmas we attended the annual torch lighting festivities like natives. Basically we took the Gondola to the town of Telluride and watched a parade of nutty skiers ski down the mountain with bright hand held FIRE. Folks were gathered and spirits were soaring high. There was a jolly feeling in the air and everyone joined together in caroling as the skiers came bustling in. It was a super cool magical experience.
HOW DID WE GET THERE! I know some airlines offer direct flights Telluride. However we took a American Airlines bird to Montrose, CO which is one hour and ten minutes away from Telluride. The Telluride airport is small and if the weather is bad or fog is dense the airport shuts down leaving travelers stranded. Once in Montrose, we hired a car service to transport us (conveniently located in the Montrose AIRPORT) and all of our luggage to the Mountain Lodge. But first a trip to the grocery store to stock up on necessities. We did our shopping in Montrose to avoid the holiday crowds in town. Coming later this week…my go to guide…like a “HOW TO” stock a condo for a week of vaca.
The teen queen took a leap and opted for snow boarding. She took two back to back group lessons. This is without doubt the ideal way to learn. She was “above board” pleased with the instruction and took to the snow like a boss. By day three she was confident and able to make good solid turns on long green runs as we skied proudly beside her. Although she loved boarding, she would greet the condo wiped out and exhausted. SKI SCHOOL and lift tickets are located at the top of the Gondola in Mountain Village across from Tomboy Tavern!
This occasionally left me and Mr. Chicken Fry to explore the ski village on our own. One evening we landed at The Madeline Hotel. The restrauant The BLACK IRON was polished and modern. It sort of drew us inside in a trance. The gas fires and windows added to the ambience of the quaint Mountain Village. We had light appetizers before grabbing a to go pizza for the family.
The town of Telluride is uniquely unique and what I mean is it’s not a one horse town. The physical TOWN of TELLURIDE is set apart and located at the base of the Gondola. But the fun doesn’t stop there. Mountain Village, which is above and mid mountain to the right of town is where we stayed and central to restaurants, ice skating, shops and hotels. (see the map below) Unless you plan on driving, once you arrive you DO NOT need a car. The FREE year around Gondola system will take you where you want to go. From there walking or free shuttles will drop you at your final destination.
We definately hit up the well known Allred’s bar and restaurant. This spectacular flagship restaurant sounded a tad overrated. I’m so glad we didn’t pre-judge and made this happen. One day after skiing and a quick wardrobe change, we lucked into a story book window seat in the bar and indulged the menu. The place is as gorgeous on the inside as is the view from the windows.
ALLRED’s, the well positioned restaurant looks down to the town of Telluride which was lite up for Christmas. The service and food was uncompromising. We had a wonderful family experience. I do recommend any time of year getting reservations early or settling for the bar which is first come first serve. (**also family friendly and for all ages) The dress/attire is a little bit of everything. Leggings, sweaters, jeans and snow boots were a standard go to uniform the whole trip. Dress up dress down it doesn’t matter. People are friendly, happy and comfortable.
WE laughed, we explored and we snuggled. I actually voiced my family vaca expectations which included much hand holding, caroling, kisses and snuggles.
We stayed in the luxurious Mountain Village at The Mountain Lodge. It’s a ski in/ ski hike in bike out out resort style property with a full workout and steam room. The amenities were plentiful. We had a spacious two bedroom condo with a gas fire place, large balcony and all of the kitchen essentials one could need. The Mountain Lodge shown below is also known for it’s restaurant called the VIEW. The rich cabin like VIEW overlooks the pool at hot tub with spectaular scenic mountains. I would rate the staff and accommodations 4.5 stars. The Mountain Lodge provides a well run shuttle service within Mountain Village area with stops at Town Hall, Mountain Village market, Blue Mesa and conference center.
One of the grandest perks of the Mountain Lodge is the proximety to Christy Sports ski rental. This particular Christy Sports was located inside the Mountain Lodge just up those stairs. We rented our ski’s online ahead of time, saved 20 percent which made it a speedy process. Upon check in we walked up the stairs, fitted for skis’ and were well on our way to a FITastic ski trip!
A: The town sits in a box canyon at 8,750 feet surrounded by steep and breathtaking 14,000-foot peaks. While Mountain Village’s elevation is at 9,545 feet and is the base of the ski resort.
A: The town was founded as Columbia in 1878, but a town in California had already established this designation, and the U.S. Postal Service forced a change in 1887 to end the confusion between the two.
A: The town itself–not including the surrounding area and Mountain Village–population was 2,221 in the 2000 United States Census.
A: No one is sure exactly how the distinctive name of Telluride came about, but it can be speculated that the name came from the chemical compounds known as tellurides. A telluride is a combination of metals or minerals such as gold, silver, zinc, lead, etc. and that of tellurium. One local legend has the name’s origination from the send-off phrase “to-hell-you-ride” in reference to the town’s once rough and tumble reputation as a Wild West town, but there is little credence to this.
A: Yes, Robert Leroy Parker, better known as Butch Cassidy, robbed his first bank in Telluride in June 1889. Cassidy was a sometimes resident of Telluride from 1884 to 1889. Along with three other accomplices, the robbers made off with approximately $21,000 from the San Miguel Valley Bank.
A: Yes, entrepreneur L.L. Nunn and George Westinghouse built the first AC generator, based off Nikola Tesla’s patented work, in Ames Colorado near Telluride. The power plant produced power for the Gold King mine 3.5 miles away. The Brown Dog is located in the L.L. Nunn building that used to house his offices for a burgeoning business empire.
A: Entrepreneur Joe Zoline envisioned a ski resort on the slopes of the mountains surrounding Telluride. Five lifts and a day lodge opened in winter of 1972.
A: The Gondola is FREE and is open from 7am to 12pm, seven days a week, most days of the year. The Gondola does close one month in the spring mid-April to mid-May and fall mid-October to mid-November.
A: The moguls are stored in super-secret warehouse underneath Gold Hill. Every spring when the snow melts, mountain operations pick up the moguls for their summer storage. The moguls are repaired and some replaced. Then as fall comes the moguls are dusted off and placed around the mountain. And if you believe that, do we have a gold mine to sell you 😉
BROWN DOG PIZZA was super cool bar/restaurant in TELLURIDE. We were there the day after Christmas and it was packed, buzzing with locals and families enjoying fab wings and pizza and fellowship. As you can see they service hot coco and is a joint for all ages.
The day we arrived we landed at TOMBOY TAVERN which would become a regular sport for us during our stay. This Mountain Village ski in ski out bar can be whatever you want it to be. Pop in for a drink off the slopes in ski boots and full on ski attire or pop in for drinks and dinner post ski. It’s conveiently located next to the Gondola and the Polar Queen Express. I simply adored the interior of this bar. They had cozy round booths with curtains and open seating. It has a 360 universal bar and couches with a fire place. The exaggerated windows look out and up to the runs. And when the weather permits, it has a great patio for spectating and beer drinking.
The skiing. The mountain is steep and wide. We had EPIC snow fall while on our trip. Mint ski conditions on this mountain was like a dream come true. The lay out and variety of the slopes are vast because you can ski so many sides of the mountain. What’s more is how not over crowded it was. Lift lines were 4-8 minutes as the most. The runs were not over populated which was also a huge perk. Almost too be good to be true. I don’t even feel like I made a dent in the mountain. We stayed on the Mountain Village side skiing alot of the bridges runs. There are bridges to ski over, bridges to ski under which made the experience really neat.
CLICK this link to view the Trail Map. telluride_trail-map
As you can see, the Mountain itself offers many mountainside stops or warming huts. On a sunny day we loved the live music at Gorrono Ranch Restaurant located a bit above the Mountain Village at the Village Express The Gorrono Ranch Restaurant offers a large sun terrace and a self-service restaurant. The usuals like burgers, soups, and a full bar. The highlight is the rustic hut with fireplace and bar. You will feel like you’ve travelled back to the gold mining past. Live music is also offered during Après-Ski. The music had people dancing and grooving like school kids.
I also made a stop a time or too at the
HIGH CAMP WARMING HUT and BIG BILLIES. neither of these offer much ambience but sure did the trick in terms of warming me up. We experienced mutliple ski days in the teens. burr rabbit!
All In all we had a magical Christmas and fantastic vacation. Every nook and cranny of. the city was lite up and decorated in. detail. We had snuggle on the couch family nights in the condo and adventerous nights exploring the town. We used the steam room for apre ski recovery time and watched college and NFL football from the VIEW! We skied our tushies off and in true Abercrombie form, made every moment count. That’s what we do!
If you have any questions or comments please weigh in. I’d love to hear from you. Until next time Telluride!
Love, skip the babble and travel!