People travel to Colorado year-round for outdoor activities, craft beers, and awesome vibes. While we may get an even bigger influx of tourists and visitors in the winter for ski and snowboarding adventures, there’s plenty to do beyond just hitting the slopes. Whether you’re a local or a visitor to our fair state, don’t miss out on some of the most unique winter activities that Colorado has to offer.
International Snow Sculpture Championships
For a family and budget friendly activity, check out the annual International Snow Sculpture Championships in Breckenridge. Each year, 16 teams from across the world (the 2020 competitors represent 12 different countries ranging from Mongolia to Argentina) travel to Breck to compete to carve 20-ton blocks of snow into enormous and impressive works of art. Spend the day on the slopes before checking out the competition in historic downtown. In 2020, sculpting is happening from January 20th - 24th, with viewing days from the 24th to the 29th.
Image via Go Breck
Ice Skating on Evergreen Lake
One of only a handful of natural outdoor ice skating rinks in the state, skating on Evergreen Lake might become an annual tradition. Rent your skates or bring your own, and enjoy the natural beauty of the Rocky Mountains. If you’re looking for something a little more structured than just skating around the lake, bring a group and some gear and use one of the several ice hockey rinks for a game. You can even rent out the lake house and skating rinks for private events throughout the winter. Plus, in the last few years Evergreen has developed from a slightly sleepy town on the way to the mountains to a destination in its own right, with breweries, wineries, coffee roasters, and several new restaurants. The dates for when the lake is open for skating vary from year to year, so check their schedule before heading up.
Image via Evergreen Parks and Recreation
Skijoring at the Leadville Crystal Carnival
If you’re looking to head a little further into the mountains, make plans to be in Leadville for their Annual Crystal Carnival and Skijoring weekend. Skijoring is a “winter sport in which a person on skis is pulled by a horse, a dog (or dogs) or a motor vehicle. It is derived from the Norwegian word skikjøring meaning ski driving.” In Leadville, competitors are pulled by horses down a main street that has been covered in tons of snow, flying over jumps and trying to collect as many hanging rings as possible on a baton. Bring a hot beverage and grab a spot anywhere along main street for an incredible competition you won’t see anywhere else. Skijoring weekend 2020 is coming up on March 6 through 8th.
Image via Leadville Twin Lakes
Frozen Dead Guy Days
If you and your crew are up for something a little weird, once of the most unique events in Colorado happens every winter in Nederland: Frozen Dead Guy Days. Named for the literal Dead Guy, Bredo Morstoel, who was cryogenically frozen in 1989 and has been kept by family in a shed near their home in Nederland since 1993. The story only gets stranger from there (seriously...you should read the whole history) but what started as one family’s unusual obligation has now become an annual celebration to all things weird. FDGD features concerts, costumes, dancing, and a polar plunge. Definitely don’t miss the main event of the weekend: coffin racing, where teams construct coffins to carry a teammate through an icy and muddy obstacle course. This winter’s Frozen Dead Guy Days is scheduled from March 13th - 15th, 2020.
Image via Frozen Dead Guys Days
Colorado Winters: good for so much more than just skiing and snowboarding. Venture forth to one of these uniquely Colorado adventures.