Welcome to ThinkVail – we hope you find this article about snowshoeing in Vail Colorado helpful.
Snowshoeing in Colorado is a wonderful way to enjoy the beautiful snowy surroundings with your family, friends and even your dog! Snowshoeing is very different from skiing. It is quiet, so still, so peaceful and best of all, you are usually by yourself or with just a few important people enjoying the winter wonderland.
Use this list of popular local trails and places to rent snowshoes throughout the Vail Valley to find your perfect adventure. These trails are fantastic, so get out there and don’t forget your sunscreen!
If snowshoeing with your dog, don’t forget a winter dog coat. Small dogs, short hair and older dogs all struggle in the cold.
The Vail Nordic Center is located at the Vail Golf course, east of Vail Village and offers 10 kilometers of easy, intermediate, and difficult snowshoe trails. You will love the stunning views of the Gore Range. The Nordic Center offers rentals, private or group lessons, guided tours and a retail shop. The daily trail fee is $5 and discounted multi-day trail passes are also available. This full-service Nordic center offers a restaurant so you can have a delicious lunch after you work up an appetite on the trail. Open mid-November through the end of March, depending on snow conditions. Leashed dogs are welcome on the snowshoe trails.
The ultimate winter experience! Join Walking Mountain Science Center and snowshoe from The Nature Discovery Center on Vail Mountain at Eagle’s Nest. Located in an all-seasons yurt atop Vail Mountain you will need a lift ticket to take part in these guided snowshoe hikes. A Walking Mountains naturalist guides daily nature hikes that explore Vail’s high alpine habitat and teaches visitors about local ecology.
FREE guided snowshoe tours – daily at 2 p.m. (No reservations needed.) Ages 10 and older. FREE evening Moonlight snowshoe tours – Tuesday-Saturday at 5:30 p.m. Ages 10 and older.
The 55,000 acres of Winter Recreation Area at the top of Vail Pass is a snowshoer’s paradise and offers some breathtaking snowshoe trails, but the area is also open to cross-country skiers, and snowmobilers so just know that you may be sharing the trail.
The area is managed by the USDA Forest Service so you’ll need to purchase a day pass at the trail head to access, but you can also pick up maps here that show users which routes are open to motorized and non-motorized travel. This area definitely offers some of the best views around and is a great place to recreate. It is open from approximately November through May, snow conditions permitting. There are some groomed routes in this area. Leashed dogs are welcome.
Paragon Guides offers custom, private tours for your snowshoe adventure. Imagine a quiet snowshoe through a beautiful evergreen stand or mountain views in an alpine setting. Guides are well-equipped to help you explore the winter wonderland on snowshoes with friends or family. Come and experience the serenity of snowshoeing with a knowledgeable and competent guide. Beginner to advanced routes are available and half- and full-day tours are offered. Price includes:
EagleVail Golf Course has a variety of Nordic trails and is a great place to get out and enjoy some of that Colorado champagne powder. Situated along the 18-hole golf course, the EagleVail Nordic Trail provides more than 8K of groomed trails for snowshoers, and dog walkers. Located on the Par 3 golf course, is a training area designed to allow young skiers to train on 2.5K of groomed terrain. Both are open to the public and are free to use. Signs are placed throughout the trail systems indicating which trails are for snowshoeing, since walking on the “ski only” trails damages the ski trails. Be respectful and follow ALL signs and cleanup after your dogs. It is free to use these trails.
The Nordic Center and McCoy Park is an exclusive feature of Beaver Creek Resort and lends to some of the most stunning views in the Valley. The Nordic Sports Center is located across from the covered bridge in the Strawberry Park building and next to chair 12 the Strawberry Park express lift. Offering a complete rental shop with snowshoe equipment rentals. Also, offered are daily scheduled and private lessons and tours, ticket sales, as well as retail and snacks.
McCoy Park is located at the top of Strawberry Park and offers an extensive trail system of more than 32 kilometers for adventurers of all levels. It is the perfect place for a day of adventure. Keep in mind you will need a lift ticket to access these trails.
Located just adjacent to the Timber Hearth Grille, rental equipment and expert instructors are at your beck and call within the Nordic Center. Cordillera offers snowshoeing six days a week from mid-December through March. Trails are open every day except Monday from 9am – 4pm. Dogs are only allowed on the snowshoe trail. Hot chocolate, water and snacks are available. Snowshoe rentals include snowshoes and poles. Purchase your trail pass at the Nordic Center to access the trails.
The Eagle Ranch Golf Course is a beautifully groomed trail system in winter. Trails are laid for both snowshoe or running with traction devices. With gently rolling terrain and wide open views of the Brush Creek Valley, the terrain is both scenic and fun. The trails are open to any form of non-motorized travel. Leashed dogs are welcome. It is free to use these trails. Please help keep trails in good condition by doing the following:
Meadow Mountain is a local’s favorite and easily accessed at the Minturn exit #171 off of I-70. Next to the Holy Cross Ranger District building. Park in the parking lot. The trail head is located by the white house. Meadow Mountain is an old ski area and there is evidence of old cabins and corrals from the ranching days. The trail gradually climbs through an open meadow on an old forest service road leading to a wonderful aspen and evergreen forest. This is a really fun trail! Leashed dogs are welcome. It is free to use these trails.
The Tennessee Pass Nordic Center is located outside of Leadville at Ski Cooper. Overlooking the stunning Sawatch Mountains, the spacious Nordic Center offers snowshoe rentals, coffee bar, beer & wine, soups & sandwiches, a toasty wood stove, and a large sunny deck. Enjoy over 27 kilometers of groomed trails that offers terrain for every style and ability level. The perfect place for a snowshoe adventure.
Remember that most Nordic Centers rent snowshoes. But if you need to rent snowshoes, here is a list of local stores that offer snowshoe rentals. Click on their name to be taken to their individual websites to learn more.
Please leave a comment and tell us your experience snowshoeing in the Vail Valley. What is your favorite trail? Do you snowshoe with your dog, with friends or with family?