The Snow Mountain Ranch Nordic Center is excited to bring you a great new activity this 2015-2016 winter season. For many of us winter can be cold, dark, and long and we just want to get through it – but Snow Mountain Ranch wants you to enjoy it!
On a few Saturdays throughout the winter we are offering an introductory snowshoe hike or Nordic ski to four of our coolest destinations at the Ranch. Come and experience an outdoor activity that gets you moving, excited, and energized to be outside. See what nature looks like in another season. You can’t get to these spots in the winter without snowshoes or skis!
Stop by the Nordic Center to rent equipment if you need it,
and call ahead to reserve your spot at 888-573-9622.
Pick your destination and go for it! We will provide a guide, a brief lesson, a couple of warm fires, s’mores and hot chocolate! The distances vary and are suited for small first timers up to seasoned athletes.
We will meet and start at the Stillwater Picnic Shelter. The destinations are as follows:
- The Rowley Homestead. Short, flat, and easiest. Approximate distance both ways is around 2k/.75m . Hot chocolate and a warming fire available. Experience the Rowley Ranch as it was in the winter season and see how tough it may have been to live out here year round. Approximate time: 1.25hrs. Starts at 10:30am.
- The Gold Mine. Also an easy adventure. Approximate distance both ways is 2.2k/1.4m. Imagine digging out a living in the dead of winter here in the Rockies! Feel the warmth of the earth and see the fog as it seeps from the mine opening on a cold winter day! Approximate time: 1.75 hrs. Starts at 10:00am.
- The Nordic Yurt. This adventure gets to be a moderate effort because of the length and the slight upgrade on the way there. Approximate distance both ways is 5.8k/3.6m. Hot chocolate, a warming fire, and a heated shelter are available. The Yurt sits in the bottom of the Blue Ridge Valley. Take a break here and enjoy the sun and meadow before putting in the final leg to the Waterfall! The snow out here at the base of the Blue Ridge can get up to 6’-8’ deep in a big winter. Approximate time: 2.25 hrs. Starts at 9:30am.
- The Waterfall. If you are fit and a big adventurer this is the destination! This requires a moderate to strenuous effort because of the distance and the upgrade for the hike out. Approximate distance both ways is 8k/5.0m. You will be rewarded with some beautiful and gorgeous ice formations from the 15’ drop. Pole Creek and the Waterfall flow all year and they are our most visited hike destinations. Making this adventure in the winter gives you a view that most people don’t get to see! If the sun is out, the ice is spectacular! If you need a break or a warm up, stop at the Yurt on the way back and reenergize for the hike back. Approximate time: Up to 3 hrs. Starts at 9:00am.
These hikes and distances are designed as introductory experiences in the winter outdoors. The times are based on easy/slow hiking or skiing pace. Times also consider stops and viewing at each destination. Make sure that proper winter clothing is worn for these adventures and that you carry water for the hikes/skis. Winter weather here at the Ranch can change quickly. Be prepared and know your equipment. If you do not have your own equipment, snowshoes and skis can be rented at our Nordic Center for this activity. There is no fee for these outings, but you must have a day or trail pass to participate. See you Out There!