Things To Do In Grand County, Colorado
Epic Mountain Sports ~ Winter Park, Colorado
Downtown Winter Park, on US 40, in Park Place Center (near Conoco)
Bike rentals, including full-suspension mountain bikes, front suspension/cross country bikes, hybrid bikes, and cruiser bikes. Sports gear and clothing, including bike accessories, picnic supplies, camping gear, backpacks, water bottles and packs, disc golf, tennis rackets. Sun hats, sunglasses, outdoor clothing, yoga pants, shirts, tank tops, and more.
Headwaters Golf Course at Granby Ranch ~ Sol Vista, Colorado
2579 County Road 894 ~ Granby, Colorado
Spectacular alpine golf course located in the heart of the Colorado Rocky Mountains. Headwaters Golf Course at Granby Ranch is an 18-hole regulation length golf course in Sol Vista, near Granby.
There’s so much to do in Grand County, in every season, that you’ll never be bored. Most of the fun things to do in Winter Park, Grand Lake, Granby, and the other beautiful areas of the county revolve around nature.
Below are some of the top attractions and activities in Grand County.
Winter Park Ski Resort
With more than 3,000 acres of terrain (ranging from beginner to expert), Winter Park is one of the top ski resorts in the world. The bumps at Mary Jane draw locals, part-timers, and even tourists who want to test their mettle. The terrain parks at Winter Park have nice progressions for snowboarders and skiers. A typical ski season runs from mid-November to mid-April, and Winter Park has an average snowball of 360 inches, most of which is light, fluffy, “champagne” powder.
In the summertime, the ski resort opens from mid-June to mid-September for a variety of family activities, including lift rides, miniature golf, a human maze, the longest alpine slide in Colorado, mountain biking, and a climbing wall.
Sol Vista Ski Basin
Although it’s not as big as Winter Park ski area, Sol Vista ski area is also not as crowded, which is one of its best selling points. Sol Vista is a great place to learn how to ski or snowboard, and in the summer, the mountain transforms into a mountain bike mecca. In 2009 and 2010, Sol Vista hosts the USA Cycling Mountain Bike National Championships.
Rocky Mountain National Park
Rocky Mountain National Park is one of the jewels of the national park system, with 265,000 acres of wilderness. In Rocky Mountain National park, there are 60 species of mammals (bighorn sheep, moose, and elk, among others), 281 types of birds, and 900 different plants. There are also 476 miles of creeks and streams and 150 lakes inside Rocky Mountain National Park. Trail Ridge Road, which typically opens from mid-May through mid-September, connects Grand Lake and Estes Park, and has the distinction of being the highest continuous highway in the U.S.
Established in 1861, Grand Lake, Colorado has the authentic look and feel of a an “Old West” town, with a wooden boardwalk that connects more than 60 restaurants, shops, and galleries. The waters of Grand Lake, Shadow Mountain Lake, and Lake Granby draw visitors in the summer, and in the winter, Grand Lake transforms into the “Snowmobile Capitol of Colorado,” with 300 miles of snowmobiling trails (150 of which are groomed) .
Grand County’s four alpine golf courses are spread across some of the most gorgeous settings in the world. Headwaters at Granby Ranch and Grand Elk Ranch and Club are located just outside of Granby, Pole Creek Golf Club is in Tabernash, and Grand Lake Golf Course is in Grand Lake, Colorado.
With 600 miles of mountain biking trails (some of which are single-track, others of which are on old mining roads and jeep roads), Winter Park has the right to bill itself as the “Mountain Bike Capitol of the World.” Sol Vista has bragging rights of its own, with incredible terrain parks carved into the side of the ski mountain and the honor of hosting the 2009 and 2010 USA Cycling Mountain Bike National Championships.
In Rocky Mountain National Park alone, there are 350 miles of hiking trails, originating from 35 trailheads. Hundreds of other hiking trains can be found in and around Winter Park, Fraser, Tabernash, Granby, Sol Vista, and Kremmling. Hiking guidebooks, researched and written by locals, point out some of the best spots.
Fishing in Grand County is some of the best in Colorado, with streams, rivers, creeks, lakes, and reservoirs teeming with rainbow trout, brown trout, and brook trout.
There are stables throughout Grand County, including in Winter Park and Grand Lake, that offer horseback riding options, from rentals to guided tours.
Water Activities / Water Sports
In Grand County, there are plenty of ways to enjoy the lakes and rivers, including: boating, rafting, kayaking, paddle boating, canoeing, water skiing, and jet skiing. The largest bodies of water in Grand County include: Grand Lake, Shadow Mountain Lake, Granby Reservoir, Green Mountain Reservoir, and Wolford Reservoir.
Thanks to Denver Water Board, jeep roads, and old mining roads, there are great ATV (all terrain vehicle) trails all over Grand County. Need to rent an ATV? You can find ATV rentals in Grand Lake.
Skiing (downhill / alpine)
Tourists, visitors, and guests ski at Winter Park and Sol Vista, and locals also throw Berthoud Pass into the mix.
Winter Park ski area and Sol Vista ski area have great snowboarding runs and super terrain parks, including halfpipes.
Cross Country Skiing
There are hundreds of miles of cross-country trails in Grand County, including groomed tracks at the Grand Lake Touring Center (in Grand Lake), as well as at Devil’s Thumb Ranch and Snow Mountain Ranch (both in Tabernash).
There are miles and miles of snowmobiling trails in Grand County, from Berthoud Pass to Rabbit Ears Pass. Grand Lake, Colorado is nationally known for its quality snowmobiling, across frozen lakes and on 150 miles of groomed trails. In Grand Lake, it’s even legal to drive a snowmobile on town roads in the winter, and many snowmobilers take advantage of the convenience of riding from a cozy cabin or lodge into town for a meal, a drink, or entertainment.
If you’re willing to pack down your own course and hike back up the mountain on foot, there are tubing opportunities at every turn in Grand County. If, however, you’d prefer to have a nice groomed runway and a mechanical device to transport you back to the top, there are two lighted tubing hills in Fraser, next to each other, above the railroad tracks.
Saturdays in the summer months in Grand County mean rodeos, and you can catch the excitement at the Flying Heels Rodeo in Granby, the High Country Stampede Rodeo in Fraser, and the Middle Parks Fair and Rodeo in Kremmling, Colorado.
The only bowling alley in Grand County is located in Grand Lake, Colorado.
The only movie theater in Grand County is located in Winter Park, on US Highway 40, near the Conoco.
The Rocky Mountain Repertory Theater in Grand Lake, Colorado presents four or five full-scale productions in its summer and fall season lineups, and the plays are typically beloved by locals, visitors, and tourists. The Rocky Mountain Repertory Theater 2010 season includes: Cabaret, Carousel, Thoroughly Modern Millie, Always Patsy Cline, and 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee.
Arts festivals abound in the summer months, most of which are held in Winter Park, Colorado and Grand Lake, Colorado.
Winter Park is known for its 20+ years of music festivals, including the renowned Jazz Festival which draws visitors from the Denver metro area, as well as from across Colorado. Grand Lake also holds several music festivals in the summer months.
Mountain bike races and 5k races are held throughout the summer and fall months in Grand County, including Winter Park, Grand Lake, Sol Vista, Fraser, and Kremmling. Some of the more well-known races are: Fat Tire Classic in Winter Park, Crankworx in Winter Park, Buffalo 5k Run in Grand Lake, Rendezvous Run (from the base of Winter Park ski resort to the town of Fraser), and Kremmling 5k/10k run.
Throughout the winter months, snowshoe races are held at Winter Park ski resort, Sol Vista, Devil’s Thumb Ranch, Grand Lake Nordic Center, and Snow Mountain Ranch Nordic Center.
To help support all of your favorite outdoor activities, the following types of shops are available throughout Grand County:
•ski rental shops
•snowboard rental shops
•snowshoe rental shops
•mountain bike rental shops
•fly fishing shops
•golf shops / pro shops
•boot fitting shops / orthotics shops