Bed and Breakfast Close to Ski Hills and Ice-Climbing Park
In western Colorado’s Ouray Ice Park, frozen waterfalls form ice curtains in a mile-long river gorge that cuts through the San Juan Mountains. This manmade ice park draws adventurers for its 200 climbs and observational vistas, an exciting winter activity that complements skiing and snowboarding on the 14,000-foot peaks a short drive away at Telluride Ski Resort. About 1 mile from the ice park and an hour from Telluride, Black Bear Manor sits close enough to the action to make a convenient home base, and innkeepers Phil and Lucie Mims indulge laid-back travelers with a mountain-view observatory and a year-round hot tub.
Mornings begin with freshly baked pastries, french toast, and pancakes served in a sun-kissed room overlooking the Rocky Mountains. With nine individually decorated rooms and suites, Black Bear Manor provides a different atmosphere for each visit—rooms may boast four-poster beds, fireplaces, or jetted tubs. Bedside chocolate truffles greet new arrivals, and each room has an exterior door for increased privacy and easy access to the wraparound veranda and jacuzzi.
Two passes to the nearby Ouray Hot Springs are included with this deal. Steamy mineral water flows into its oval-shaped pool, cooled to 88–105 degrees by the mountain air. Divided into three sections of varying temperature with a diving and lap-swimming area, the hot springs remains immersed in nature with the Rocky Mountains and imported Pyrenees Mountains on all sides.
Ouray, Colorado: Former Mining Town Enclosed by Rocky Mountain Wilderness
The former gold- and silver-mining colony of Ouray sits at a 7,760-foot elevation in a box canyon of southwest Colorado. Craggy, red-hued mountains surround the town on three sides, with Victorian-style homes, converted saloons, and other 19th-century buildings on the valley floor. So isolated is this rugged patch of back country that Butch Cassidy was able to hide here in 1889 after robbing a bank for the first time in nearby Telluride. Today, many visitors explore the wilderness via four-wheelers and hiking trails, including those found at Box Canyon Waterfall & Park about a half-mile walk from Black Bear Manor. With suspension bridges, wildflower meadows, rare birds, and the 285-foot Box Canyon Waterfall, the park is filled with postcard-worthy scenery.