This is a really exciting time of year in Crested Butte. With season snowfall totals pushing toward the triple digits, the extreme terrain is starting to open up. The High Lift started spinning on January 2nd and the North Face Lift shouldn’t be too far behind.
This terrain is, literally, the stuff of legends. Crested Butte hosted the first U.S Extreme Ski Championships in 1992. Holding the event in Crested Butte was no accident. Crested Butte had long been regarded as the best inbounds extreme skiing in the U.S. Competitors from the 1990s include the likes of Dean Cummings, Seth Morrison, Brant Moles, Chris Davenport, and Wendy Fisher. More recent winners include Griffin Post and Angel Collinson, stars of this year’s Teton Gravity Research movie, Paradise Waits. CB is the place where the best in the world have made names for themselves for a couple of generations of skiers at this point.
Including the venues that have been used for the Extremes, many of which are inbounds, Crested Butte has a total of 542 acres of inbounds extreme terrain. As a general rule, this terrain is steep, rocky, ungroomed, and intense. You will find cliff drops, pillows, straightlines, and exposure. You will also find North America’s steepest cut trail, Rambo, at a puckering 55 degrees. Crested Butte is the best place in Colorado to go with a group of friends to ride lifts and get stoked on challenging yourselves. Hit it on a powder day and you’ll be talking about it for years.
This year, taking the plunge into Crested Butte’s extremes is even easier. Lodging properties in Gunnison and Almont, a mere 30-45 minute free bus ride from Crested Butte Mountain, offer the Gunnison Getaway in partnership with Crested Butte Mountain Resort. You can stay in Gunnison and ski Crested Butte for as little as $68 per person, per night. Your lift ticket and lodging are bundled in one package making planning your trip the easiest thing you’ll do this winter.
But going the Gunnison Getaway route is not like staying in Salt Lake City to save money when you ski Alta or Snowbird. Gunnison is a cool place to hang out in its own right. It’s somewhere between a college town and a cowboy town with a little hippy biking flavor thrown in for good measure. You won’t find any pretentious attitudes or people there to see and be seen. You will find terrific restaurants and coffee shops and friendly people happy to welcome you to the community. You’ll also find prices noticeably lower than most places within spitting distance of a major ski area.
This season, take advantage of the Gunnison Getaway (http://goo.gl/uK8GHk) and take your skiing or snowboarding to new limits.