The mountain-savvy staff at Apex Ex equip people of all skill levels with the knowledge, gear, and plans necessary to explore the wilderness all year round. Seasoned guides and instructors, many of whom are trained by organizations such as the National Outdoor Leadership School and the American Mountain Guides Association, lead classes that teach students important lessons ranging from backcountry snow basics to avalanche rescue. In summer months, the experts lead guided climbing and backpacking trips and teach riders to careen down rocky paths of every sort during mountain-biking lessons.
Halfway through a 1080, a glove slips?it's time to bail. Normally, the prospect of landing means crashing a shoulder into snow and ice, but instead a cloud seems to catch the fall. At Progresh, a giant indoor airbag absorbs the impact of falls as skiers, snow- and skateboarders, BMX bike mechanics, and gymnasts practice airborne tricks in a controlled training environment. Before designing the jumps, ramps, rails, and trampolines that fill the 11,000-square-foot suite, the gym's founders each spent more than 20 years riding slopes and working with children in gymnastics programs. Using that experience, the staff helps athletes master everything from grinding rails and jibs to dropping off 10-foot cliffs and vert walls?all with the greater safety and confidence afforded by the inflatable airbag.
As the sun starts to melt last night's snowfall, cross-country skis gently glide over the freshly groomed trails of Grand Lake Nordic Center. The peaks of Rocky Mountain National Park and Arapahoe National Forest rise in the distance, with shifting views and perspectives as guests make their way through different trails. Newcomers can take a lesson in cross country skiing or snowshoeing while more advanced outdoorsmen tackle the snow enclaves of Randall's Romp or Spirits Haunt. The nearby lodge offers steaming bowls of soup, while children can take a tumble down the tubing hill or play rock-paper-scissors with a Yeti.
Colorado Adventure Park proudly proclaims itself to be one of Grand County's largest tubing hills. Every winter, this snowy dreamland offers kids of all ages an adrenaline-pumping adventure in the form of tubing, double-tubing, and renting Snow Scoots––pintsized snowmobiles designed for kids as young as six. Though Colorado Adventure Park is currently open only during the winter, the owners are making plans for summer activities as well.
Atop Granby Ranch's airy heights, the cycle jockeys of SolVista Basin spread a fan of lofty bike trails for all skill levels. Gear up and bomb down six beginner and intermediate trails or try to land extreme aerials on two pro-level double-black-diamonds. Stop by a complimentary mountain-biking clinic (Saturdays at 10:30 a.m.) to brush up on the basics of cornering, climbing, jumping, steep-terrain riding, and Sasquatch racing. Whether gliding carefree down the easy slopes of Nature's Way, or watching significant others brave the Cougar from the Base Camp Lodge café, wheelie cragsmen will remember this thrilling experience for years to come.
The Colorado Cross Country Ski Association represents a network of avid cross country skiers, 17 Nordic resorts, and several guest ranches scattered throughout the state. The nonprofit's reach covers 547 kilometers of groomed cross country skiing trails, including those for skate skiing, classic skiing, and extended downhill snowshoeing. With a number of initiatives in store for the season?including lessons, races, and fun social events?the association promotes the sport to its ever-growing fan base throughout nearly six months of favorable ski conditions. Members also participate in events such as the Town Race Series, held periodically at the Vail Nordic Center, and free clinics hosted by the Pagosa Springs Nordic Ski Club, as well as trips to the serene and secluded Latigo Ranch, tucked away amid the pine and aspen forests 9,000 feet above sea level.