A Day in the Mid Valley

Posted on February 26, 2021 by Chris Klug

Happy Friday from Aspen Snowmass! This past week has felt like springtime here in the mountains. With temperatures in the upper 30s and all day sunshine, we’ve had amazing bluebird days for skiing and riding. Basalt and Willits, also known as the Mid Valley, is just 25 minutes away from Aspen Snowmass, and offers a full day of family friendly fun, shopping, and great dining options! 

To start your day in the Mid Valley, check out Wienerstube in the heart of Willits. Formerly an Aspen fixture for Austrian German cuisine, this local favorite is serving up longtime local favorites in a new location. Relive great memories with even better cuisine and nostalgic atmosphere. If you’re more of a grab-and-go breakfast person, Craft Coffeehouse in Downtown Basalt is where you need to be. Enjoy local craft coffee, tea, and small bites! Do not miss out on their pastries. The cozy space is a perfect place to sit down and enjoy your morning cup of coffee, and visit with friends. Check out their instagram (@craftbasalt) for special community events.

Now that you’re fueled up for the day, it’s time for activities. Enjoy hiking and outdoor time at Crown Mountain Park, adjacent to Willits. There are trails, fields, and fun playgrounds— perfect for the entire family! Hiking in the Mid Valley offers great views and a change of pace. One of our favorites is Arbaney Kittle Trail. This trail starts in Holland Hills, and offers incredible views of Mount Sopris at the top. While a great option for sunsets, this trail is mostly shaded and makes it a great option during a summer or even winter day! 

Breakfast? Check. Morning exercise? Check. Lunch? Check out Capitol Creek Brewery or Heather’s. Capitol Creek Brewery, right next to Wienerstube, offers lunch and beer menus to please everyone! The beer selection is always changing, and made by a master brewer. If you’re hoping for a sweet treat with lunch, you need to go to Heather’s Savory Tapas and Pies in Downtown Basalt. Known for years for their savory and sweet pies, this is a staple not to be missed. Two must-haves include the famous chicken pot pie and the pistachio cake. Heather’s offers live music in the evenings. For more information on musical acts, go to @heathersbasalt on Instagram.

Spend the afternoon shopping! There are plenty of options for home and fashion throughout Willits and Downtown Basalt. Some of our Willits favorites are Susie’s Consignment, Kitchen Collage, Holly Ann Boutique, and Bristlecone Sports. These stores are all within walking distance for easy shopping convenience! If you’re looking for treasures, Heirlooms on Midland Avenue in Downtown Basalt is your go-to shop. 

Free Range Kitchen and Wine Bar in Basalt

At the end of the day, who isn’t ready for a nice meal? One of our all time favorite dinner spots in Basalt is Free Range Kitchen and Wine Bar. This Basalt hot spot offers farm-to-table dining, amazing cocktails, a great wine list, and weekly live music! Free Range also offers weekly dinner specials, like Taco Tuesday and Wednesday Fried Chicken. New this winter, you can dine outside in your own private igloo! For information and menus, head over to freerangebasalt.com

Have a great weekend ahead! Stay safe and have fun! 

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Outdoor Dining in Aspen Snowmass

Posted on February 19, 2021 by Chris Klug

Happy Friday from Aspen Snowmass! In the last 10 days, snow just doesn’t seem to ever stop coming down, and more is in the forecast this weekend! The conditions across all four mountains are spectacular, and the lifts are spinning later into the afternoon. Spring feels like its just around the corner! Pitkin County, and the entire State of Colorado, is officially in the yellow zone of the Covid-19 Dial. This allows indoor dining at 50% capacity, as well as retail, offices, and personal services. Some consider outdoor dining a safer option, and there are plenty of options in Aspen and Snowmass Village for fantastic dining experience outdoors. Read on for some of our favorites!

Outdoor dining is a must in the summer in Aspen, but essentially disappears come ski season. During these unprecedented times, local restaurants have become creative in constructing fashionable are safe outdoor dining areas. Be sure to check out French Alpine Bistro, on Hopkins Avenue. Their fondue and crepes are to-die-for, and the outdoor dining feels like a true extension of the cozy and romantic restaurant. The Prospect at the famous Hotel Jerome offers an incredible winter dining experience with decked out bubbles, dressed to classic Aspen perfection. The Prospect updates their menu seasonally, and its always delectable. Bubbles are popping up all over town, and on the mountain! If you want to enjoy Bonnie’s deck in the cold and snow, or even on a sunny day, there are bubbles to enjoy the famous oatmeal pancakes in your own dining pod. Don’t forget the apple strudel!

If you’re looking for a more casual dining experience, family-friendly atmosphere, and awesome views, Snowmass Village has great outdoor dining options for you and the whole family! Venga Venga on the Snowmass Mall is a village staple. Enjoy Mexican food, adult beverages, and a huge outdoor patio with headlamps, festive lighting, and fire pits. During the day, watch skiers and riders descend Fanny Hill. By night, enjoy snow cats groom the hill. Another great spot for heated outdoor dining is Base Camp Bar and Grill, right at the base of Snowmass Mountain. This ideally located restaurant is in the heart of Snowmass Base Village, and is the place to be for regular après, special concerts, and daily Snowmass S’Mores!

Outdoor dining will become better and better as the spring ski days start to heat up, and the sun shines longer. When dining in public, be sure to wear your mask when not seated, stay socially distanced, and be prepared to take temperature checks at the restaurants. Let us know which outdoor dining has the best experience. Have a great weekend ahead! Keep snow dancing!

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Presidents' Weekend and Valentine's Day in Aspen Snowmass

Posted on February 12, 2021 by Chris Klug

Happy Friday from Aspen Snowmass! We are certainly excited about this long, holiday weekend here in mountains. With almost two feet of fresh snow last week, and more on the way this weekend, the skiing and riding couldn’t be better right now. Aspen Mountain is now 100% open after last week’s storm. Snowmass, Buttermilk, and Aspen Highlands are about 95% open. This weekend’s storm is expecting up to 14 inches of fresh snow over the three day weekend, which will make for epic shredding conditions across all four mountains! This Saturday, February 13th also marks the point in the season where lifts stay spinning later in the afternoon. Lifts spinning until 4pm daily will include Silver Queen Gondola, FIS Chair, and Ajax Express at Aspen Mountain, Exhibition and Cloud 9 at Highlands, Summit Express at Buttermilk, and Village Express, Elk Camp Gondola, and the new and improved Big Burn Chair at Snowmass. We are certainly ready for longer ski days!

If you find yourself on any of our four mountains this weekend, be sure to of course wear your mask, stay socially distanced, and keep your ears perked up for Bud Light’s Music on the Mountain! This concert series is continuing the local favorite tradition of Hi-Fi Concerts, but in a safe manner. Local and regional artists will be featured every weekend through March at various locations on and at the base of each mountain. For the most up-to-date artist announcements, concert locations, and set times, follow @aspensnowmass on social media.

Are you looking for last minute Valentine’s Day plans this weekend with that special someone? Yes, Valentine’s Day is this weekend too! Sunday to be exact. If you’re hoping to support a fantastic cause, be heart healthy, and get outside, you are a great candidate for Ski for the Pass race on Sunday, February 14th. This is a 7K classic race on Independence Pass beginning at 10am, starting at the Winter Closure Gate on Highway 82 and finishing at the Lincoln Creek Road turnoff. There are new rules for this year’s race, which include no spectators, 30 second interval starts for proper social distancing, and a cap on the number of racers. Registration is still open and can be found at utemountaineer.com, along with more information. This is a family favorite, and friendly, event that benefits the Independence Pass Foundation. I hope to see you up there! I’ll be racing with my daughter this year.

If you’re hoping to have a more low-key plan with your Valentine, or want to avoid the hustle and bustle, as well as pressure of Sunday plans, treat your Valentine to Dinner and a Movie at Ajax Tavern! Continuing the popular Dinner and a Movie Under the Stars from this past socially-distanced summer, Dinner and a Movie at Ajax Tavern’s outdoor heated tent. Dinner starts at 6:30pm and features the fabulous regular menu at Ajax Tavern and Moet Chandon packages. Showtime is at 7:30pm. This week’s movie is the Chris Farley classic Tommy Boy. For more information, reservations, and upcoming movie showings, visit thelittlenell.com

Pitkin County is expected to move up to the State’s new dial, and into yellow restrictions, on Saturday, February 13th. This would mean restaurants can operate at 50% capacity for indoor dining, and move the last call for alcohol from 10pm to 11pm. Other businesses such as retail, offices, gyms, and personal services can also move to 50% capacity. Aspen Snowmass is (more) open! Have a fun and safe holiday weekend! Think snow!

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Aspen Square is the Place to be in Downtown Aspen!

Posted on February 5, 2021 by Chris Klug

Happy Friday from Aspen Snowmass! I hope you are doing well and enjoying the fresh snow we received yesterday. I’m excited to share one of my favorite developments in downtown Aspen. Aspen Square Condominium Hotel. One of Aspens premier properties, Aspen Square is located in the heart of downtown Aspen across from Gondola Plaza and Little Nell, walking distance to Aspens best restaurants, shops, and galleries. The Silver Queen Gondola is only 60 steps away, and the Aspen Art Museum is only a block down Spring Street. Enjoy fabulous views of Aspen Mountain, Smuggler, Hunter Creek Valley and Red Mountain from the private outdoor patios. Aspen Squares friendly staff and culture of hospitality, striving to make every guest feel welcome and their stay memorable, brings return guests back year after year. The condominiums are all equipped with a full kitchen. Enjoy après ski and dine in meals next to the wood burning fireplace.

Originally designed by Fritz Benedict and opened in 1969, the hotel completed an extensive remodel in the Fall/Winter 2020 including major exterior improvements and a remodel of the front desk and lobby, conference room facility, and guest hallways and entryways— including a new secure key system. There are options for everyone with fireplace studio suites along with one, two, and three-bedroom condominium units. All units are perfect for an individual, a couple, or the whole family! Excellent Aspen Square Hotel amenities include: pool, two hot tubs, outdoor fire pit seating area, conference room, gym, front desk, concierge, off-street heated garage parking, complimentary WIFI service, and daily housekeeping.

Klug Properties currently has three active listings at Aspen Square. AspenSquare418.com is a top floor, corner one-bedroom, two-bathroom deluxe Aspen Square Condominium with two wood-burning fire places. There are no other units like this one in the entire complex! AspenSquareStudio.com features a fabulous, contemporary remodel of this entire fireside studio with perfect views of Red Mountain, Hunter Creek Valley, and Smuggler. AspenSquare215.com is another great fireside studio with views of Little Nell, Gent’s Ridge, and Trainer’s Ridge overlooking the courtyard pool area. Please contact me today if you’d like to discuss active listings at Aspen Square, or some other off-market opportunities.

My father, Warren Klug, managed Aspen Square for almost 25 years. I was raised in the condominium hotel business environment and at Aspen Square. Aspen Squares owners and guests have become a part of our family. I know the property well, and for this reason, no one has sold more at Aspen Square than Klug Properties the last decade. Summer or Winter, Aspen Square is absolutely the place to be. Aspen Square is truly Living Aspen!”

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Winter X Games 2021

Posted on January 29, 2021 by Chris Klug

Happy X Games weekend from Aspen Snowmass! We received some much-needed snow across all four mountains over the last week, and we are ready for the action! Due to the Covid-19 Pandemic, this year’s X Games will be different than years past. This year’s events will focus entirely on the athletes and the competition at Buttermilk. Fans have the opportunity to enjoy this year’s event completely virtual. Read on to review the history and evolution of X Games, highlights from past events, and why X Games have become a favorite event for locals, spectators, and competitors.

ESPN’s Winter X Games first debuted at Buttermilk Mountain in the Winter of 2002, and has been a January staple in Aspen Snowmass ever since. This year marks the 20th anniversary of X Games in Aspen. When X Games first came to town, there were around 40,000 spectators over the entire weekend. Local schools took the long weekend off, and students took field trips with their class to the competition venue at the base of Buttermilk Mountain. While the local kids aren’t getting time off from school or busing to Buttermilk this year, X Games has evolved and the show will go on, just from the comfort of our homes, like many events this year. The Games normally command tens of thousands of fans daily, but not this year. Recent evolution in X Games programming include X Fest, a village of sponsors and vendors at the base of the Super Pipe, where we have hosted our Chris Klug Foundation booth in past years together with our volunteers. The biggest attraction, besides the competition, are the concerts at the base of Buttermilk. Past performances include The Chainsmokers, Rapper Lil Wayne, and DJ Calvin Harris. I joke that X games used to an action sports fest with a little music. The past years it became a weekend long concert with some action sports.

With what’s happening in our world today, there will be no concerts or X Fest village this year. X Games 2021 is going back to the original attraction, and will entirely focus on the competition and the athletes. Shawn White, The Flying Tomato, is making his return to X Games this weekend along with Chloe Kim? Shaun White dazzled in X Games Snowboard Superpipe contests in years past by revolutionizing freestyle snowboarding, and wowing crowds in the process. Only 500 executives, producers, and event staff are allowed on the grounds, including about 100 athletes. With Canadian snowboarder Mark Morrison, the most decorated X Games athlete, out due to Covid-19, all eyes are on Aspen local freeskier Alex Ferreira who is going for his third consecutive X Games Gold Medal. Ferreira is not the only local skier to compete. Basalt native Torin Yater-Wallace first took the X Games stage in 2011 and has won four medals since. Good luck Torin and Alex. We will be cheering you both on this weekend!

Looking back on how the Winter X Games has evolved in Aspen Snowmass, it’s easy to be amazed at the weekend-long event jam-packed with winter fun. X Games is celebrating 20 years in Aspen, and will definitely be a memorable anniversary. Here are a few reminders and tips to enjoy X Games safely this year.

  • The event is entirely closed to the public. Buttermilk Mountain will still operate during normal hours for skiers and riders during the day, and only the Terrain Park will be closed. Aspen Snowmass’s College Pass is not a ticket option this year.
  • This year’s events include skiing and snowboarding Superpipe, Big Air, and Slopestyle. All programming will be on ESPN and its sister networks. There will be 17 hours of X Games programing on each day throughout the weekend.
  • There will be no live concerts or X Fest village for Winter X Games 2021. Instead, fans are invited to attend Virtual X Fest. This is an immersive, interactive experience online. Basically, it’s like a video game of the traditional X Fest, where one normally visits with sponsors and vendors to interact and even receive great swag. Did we mention Virtual X Fest is free?

Have a fun and safe X Games weekend! Remember, the best place to watch the competition and get in on the action is at home. No masks, no social distancing, and no cold feet from the comfort of your couch!

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Havens at Fanny Hill & Electric Pass Lodge

Posted on January 22, 2021 by Chris Klug

Happy Friday from Aspen Snowmass! I hope you are doing well and staying healthy and safe. January is quieter than normal in Aspen Snowmass without our Brazilian and Australian friends, but there is still lots of excitement brewing in Snowmass, specifically at Base Village. Snowmass Base Village was completed a few years ago, and has been a vibrant area in the village ever since. I was sitting in the hot tub at the Snowmass Mountain Club at The Limelight Hotel last weekend with my kids looking out at ice skaters circling the rink and families huddled around the fire pits having fun and enjoying treats from the Creperie, Sundays, drinks from Mix Six. It was a fun scene. Even in a pandemic, it’s a great place to hang out and enjoy family time after a great day on the hill. Read on to find out why this is such a special place, and only getting even better!

Snowmass Base Village offers fun activities for kids and adults alike. Snowmass Ski Area is renowned for its world-class terrain for all skiing and boarding ability levels and great on-mountain facilities. The ice rink providing après ski fun in the heart of Base Village in winter, turns into a turf field for soccer and games in summer. Year-round appeal includes wonderful restaurants, the Limelight Hotel, and The Collective - which offers family-friendly programming, Mix6 Bar and Restaurant, and even a kids’ game lounge. This is the place to be, summer and winter!

All of the action in the new Base Village is complimented by some beautiful new contemporary residences at Lumin, Limelight Residences and One Snowmass East and West. Most of this new inventory is sold out. As of today, there are only a few developer units left at One Snowmass East and a few resales at One Snowmass West and Lumin. Two new residential projects in Base Village will break ground this spring. These incredible and totally unique new projects are The Havens at Fanny Hill, and Electric Pass Lodge.

Havens at Fanny Hill include ten single-family homes conveniently located directly on Fanny Hill across from the Village Mall and in front of Woodrun Place, just below Woodrun V. Location is everything with Havens. This is fall-out-of-bed ski access; it doesn’t get better! Because of this unique and special location, these will be the only ten single-family homes ever available in the new Base Village collection designed by Lake Flato Architects out of Texas. Havens is a fully managed property, with three and four-bedroom layouts. This project will be completed in 2023. However, it is not too early to own your Haven! Registration is open and three units are already pending sale, 3-bedroom unit #4, and 4-bedrooms #7 and #8. These are listed between $5 - $8 million. Please call or email me today if you would like to learn more about this exciting project in Snowmass Village.

Electric Pass Lodge is comprised of 52 two and three-bedroom residences located just to the east of One Snowmass East and Limelight Snowmass, across from the new Snowmass Clinic, where my good buddy Dr. Jon works. These will be brand new ski-in, ski-out residences that will offer the first large saltwater pool in Base Village, which will make the Haden and Capital Peak owners very happy! Beyond these amenities, Electric Pass Lodge will be 100% electric and 100% sustainable. Not only is this project unique in its sustainability, but so is the sales process. Much like the Tesla model, at noon on Tuesday, January 26th, interested parties can sign up for priority reservations with a fully refundable $1,000 deposit for their own Electric Pass Lodge unit, which is also slated for completion in 2023. Please call or email me today for more information on this next generation project and sales process. The deposit is refundable and it saves your priority spot in line, so if you’re considering it, let’s get you registered, so you have an early pick for the best location in the new building. Remember there are only 52 units in total at Electric Pass Lodge and they will be more affordable than One Snowmass, Lumin or Limelight with pricing starting at $1,400,000. Viceroy Tower 2 will be a hotel and not a condominium project. With the other high-end buildings effectively sold out, it’s a good bet that Building 12 will also be more expensive. With Haven’s starting at $5 million, Electric Pass fits a niche for a great eco-friendly complex with a more competitive entry pricing strategy and excellent amenities right in the middle of Base Village.

With record-low condo and single-family inventory in Snowmass Village, especially for new contemporary product, these two new condominium projects are exciting opportunities to be a part of the energy and fun of the new Base Village. Construction is set to start in Spring 2021. If you’re interested in learning more about Havens, Electric Pass Lodge, or any Snowmass Village condo or single-family opportunities, please contact me today. We are here full-time, ready to help you! Have a fun and safe weekend! Do your snow dance! Hopefully winter is returning this weekend! X Games Aspen is coming to Aspen next weekend! We will share some tips next week on how to take part in the action even though spectators will not be welcomed this year in person to Buttermilk!

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Best Picnic Spots in Aspen Snowmass

Posted on January 15, 2021 by Chris Klug

Happy Martin Luther King Weekend from Aspen Snowmass! This long weekend is sure to be great with snow showers in the forecast. Pitkin County Board of Health voted unanimously to put the county into Level Red, starting this Sunday. The biggest change to the health code is the cease of indoor dining at restaurants. Outdoor dining, takeout, and delivery are still permitted. Read on to find out how to make the most of this change, with great food and great outdoor views!

Now more than ever, picnics are the place to gather— safely within your household, per county health code (of course). There are plenty of fabulous places to picnic in Aspen and Snowmass. Each of our four ski mountains have outdoor dining tables scattered around with gorgeous views and plenty of social distancing. Three of our favorites are the top of Tiehack at Buttermilk Mountain, and Wine Cabin on Snowmass, located at the bottom of Sneaky’s run, and of course Tourtelotte Park on Aspen Mountain. Skin up or ski directly to these on-mountain locations! Some of the best in-town picnic spots include sun-drenched Wagner Park and Glory Hole Park, right behind the W Aspen. One of the most ideal picnic spots in Snowmass Village is Town Park. There’s a gazebo, playground, and huge open field. Did we mention amazing views of the entire ski area? This spot truly has it all!

Now, you know where you want to picnic, but you don’t want to create your own picnic from scratch. Aspen Snowmass restaurants offer great, and even inspiring, to-go options! Here are a few of our personal favorites. Meat and Cheese, located on Restaurant Row in Aspen, is famous for putting any of their cheese, chicken, and steak boards in an easy-to-eat to-go container. Big Wrap, right across from Gondola Plaza, has always been takeaway only. They have the routine down to a science. Be sure to try the Pesto Wrapture! If you’re up for nontraditional picnic fare, Taster’s Pizza in Snowmass is your ticket. Besides delicious pizza, they’re known for great subs and salads. The Crepe Shack in Snowmass Base Village has mastered the to-go crepe with their unique crepe cone. There are plenty of savory and sweet options to satisfy any craving. For the most up-to-date restaurant offerings, check out eataspen.com and eatsnowmass.com

Have a great weekend! Stay safe and healthy, and most importantly, have fun! Happy trails ahead.

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January 2021 In Aspen Snowmass

Posted on January 8, 2021 by Chris Klug

Happy New Year from Aspen Snowmass! 2020 was an exciting year, and 2021 is shaping up to be great. If you are ready to come to the mountains, but want to avoid the hustle and bustle of President’s Day weekend and Spring Break, read on to find out why Aspen Snowmass is ideal in January!

The skiing in Aspen Snowmass is in awesome condition right now. All four mountains are open. Snowmass has over 75% open acreage. Aspen Highlands has 82% open acreage, including the famous Highlands Bowl. Aspen Mountain and Buttermilk are boasting the highest open acreages with 97% and 96% acreage, respectively. Snow conditions are great, and are only getting better with winter storms in the weekend forecast. Be sure to download the Aspen Snowmass app for the most up-to-date terrain intel.

January is a typically quiet month, but there are still ongoing weekly events. Some amazing events this season that are not to be missed include Snowmass Luminescence, FRIENDSWITHYOU Dancing Orbs at the Base Village Skating Rink, and the Friday Morning Uphill Club at Buttermilk. These weekly recurring events are outside, socially distanced, and kid-friendly. For more information and details, head over to AspenSnowmass.com

Winter X-Games, Winterskol, and Gay Ski Week are synonymous with January in Aspen. There is no doubt these events will look different due to Covid-19 restrictions. But as the theme of this year’s Winterskol states, “The Snow Must Go On”! This year, Winter X Games is celebrating 20 years in Aspen, Colorado. Winterskol is celebrating its 70th anniversary, and Aspen Gay Ski Week is still the longest running Gay Ski Week in America. The events will be mostly virtual this year. For information, check out their social media profiles @aspenco, @aspengayskiweek and @xgames.

Wishing you a wonderful weekend from Klug Properties! Stay safe and healthy, and have fun!

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Last Minute Holiday Shopping in Aspen

Posted on December 18, 2020 by Chris Klug

Happy Holidays from Klug Properties! It’s that time of year to be gifting. If you’re in a pinch, and have missed the shipped-by-Christmas deadline, this is exactly where you need to be. Read on for our shopping picks in Downtown Aspen for the gear-heads, hosts with the mosts, and fashionistas on your gift list.

Aspen Winter

For that gear-head in your life who seems to always have the latest and greatest toys in the great outdoors, there are three shops in downtown Aspen that can point you in the right direction for a memorable gift. Check out Ute Mountaineer in the Elks Building for everything outdoor; Hamilton Sports right across Gondola Plaza for you skier/snowboarder; and Hub of Aspen on Hyman Avenue for your year round biker. The friendly sales associates are also local experts, who can definitely point you in the right direction to wow your recipient or even help with a familiar and trusted brand. 

Need a last minute hostess gift with some Aspen flair? Amen Ward on Main Street has the most fabulous home goods ranging from kitchen to bath to decoration and everything in between, literally. The store is also known for amazing gift wrapping. Gorsuch, located on Cooper Mall and in Gondola Plaza, is known for being ski chic. If you’re looking for something truly mountain memorable, this is your store. Their clothing selection is also amazing for indoor and outdoor wear.

While there are plenty of luxury designer stores scattered throughout Aspen’s downtown core, there are a few clothing stores that are truly Aspen. Pitkin County Dry Goods, located on Cooper Avenue, has been a local fashion staple for over 50 years. They’re known for their leather goods and annual sales, but have an awesome collection of clothing ranging from loungewear to formalwear and all of the accessories you need for both men and women. Another Aspen staple is Kemo Sabe, on Galena Street. This famous western store has the best selection of custom hats and truly Aspen pieces. There’s even a bar in the restaurant, creating the perfect shopping experience. 

Most stores provide gift wrapping, but if you’re hoping to put your own touch on the wrap job head over to Carl’s Pharmacy on Main Street. Carl’s is the local and visitor’s go-to for everything, from shampoo to over the counter medicine to liquor and everything in between. Wishing you a healthy, safe, and happy holiday ahead! 

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Winter Sports in Aspen Snowmass

Posted on December 11, 2020 by Chris Klug

Happy Friday from Aspen Snowmass! Snow is expected throughout the weekend forecast, and we need it! The 2020 ski season here is different than years past with new pass options, social distancing requirements, and upgraded health and safety protocols. With our current snow pack, Aspen Skiing Company’s changes, and the long-awaited lift service anticipation, some locals have opted for other activities to get out and get active this winter season. Read on to find out what activities to do, where to do them, and where to find the proper gear. 

Smuggler

Question: What winter sports can I do besides downhill ski? Answer: There are plenty of activities and sports to do in Aspen and Snowmass that are both outside and offer a plethora of social distancing. Some local favorites include fat biking, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, and hiking with shoe spikes. There certainly aren’t any lines for these snow sports!

Question: Where do I find the proper gear for these activities? Answer: The local, and visitor, favorite outdoor store in Aspen is Ute Mountaineer, located in the historic Elks Building in downtown Aspen (UteMountaineer.com). Ute Mountaineer is the go-to for all things outdoors to safely play in the mountains. You can even book an appointment online for one-on-one sales support with one their experienced staff members! If fat-biking is you’re winter sport of choice, head over to the Hub of Aspen bike shop, 616 E Hyman Avenue in downtown Aspen. The Hub of Aspen staff are the year round bike gurus. For more, head over to HubOfAspen.com  

Question: I know what I winter sport I’m doing. I have the gear. Where do I use it? Answer: Aspen and Snowmass offer great trail systems, for beginners through experts. The Snowmass Club and Aspen golf courses are great options for casual cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, and hiking with shoe-spikes. This trail is affectionately known as Labrador Lane in Snowmass because of it’s dog-friendly policy, just don’t forget a leash! Smuggler Mountain trail is a favorite for year round hiking and biking with the wide road and stunning views of Aspen Mountain. If you’re hoping for an excursion outside of town, Ashcroft Trails up the Castle Creek Valley are a must. Be cautious of the horse drawn sleigh heading up to the Pine Creek Cookhouse on the main Ashcroft trail. 

Wherever and however you decide to recreate this winter, be sure to wear a mask and maintain social distancing. Let’s keep Aspen and Snowmass open and safe for everyone to enjoy. Happy Trails ahead! 

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