Buena Vista, a quiet little mountain town literally translated as “beautiful view”, is surrounded by a group of massive peaks reaching over fourteen thousand feet called the Collegiates. During the summer, the town is bustling with rafting, festivals, and hikers. Although winter is known as a quieter season, the hot springs and winter time sports offered will give you little time to be bored.
Start off your Buena Vista adventures right with high-altitude roasted coffee beans at the Buena Vista Roastery and splurge on one of their delicious, homemade treats. Walk across the street to the Trailhead on Main Street and rent some snowshoes for a fun escapade through Colorado powder. Nearly any normal hiking trail covered with snow can be accessed with snowshoes; visit sections of the Colorado Trail, take a scenic hike to high alpine lakes such as Ptarmigan, Kroenke, Brown’s, and Tunnel Lake, or visit the Arkansas Headwaters State Recreation Area with miles of trails that overlook the town of Buena Vista. For steeper climbs bring a pair of poles to help with the ascent. Rest your legs at the local distillery, Deerhammer Distilling Company, and enjoy a cocktail with their Malt Whiskey, Whitewater Whiskey, Buena Vista Brandy, or Bullwheel Gin. After you get the blood flowing again walk across the street to The Asian Palate, a Rocky Mountain spin on Asian cuisine and a local’s hotspot, featuring fresh sushi and Asian entrees.
If you want a day of thrills and fast rides, give Burandt’s Backcountry Adventure or Cottonwood Country Snowmobile Tours a call and they’ll introduce you to a new way of looking at the Rocky Mountains. Kick and glide your way around Buena Vista on cross-country skis. The fun, laid-back cross groomed trails offer more fun in the snow without the motors and allow you to take in the epic views of the fourteeners in the Arkansas River Valley. After some fun on the snow, visit Mount Princeton Hot Springs or Cottonwood Hot Springs for a dip into a relaxing hot spring. If you’re really looking to pamper yourself, book a massage at the hot springs after soaking. Visit the mountain town whose motto is “8,000 feet above average” and enjoy a fun-filled Colorado winter vacation!