Aspen & Vail
The Elk Mountains’ ski resorts of Aspen and Vail draw crowds from around the globe to ski the slopes and unwind at après-ski bars.
Athletic Aspen offers skiers a sheer 3,000-foot (900-meter) vertical drop, along with cross-country skiing, ghost town trails and overnight cabin trails.
Wildflowers bloom in the meadows in summer, hot springs reward hikers following the wilderness trails, and the quaint mountain main street is lined with designer boutiques from Prada to Gucci.
The cutely alpine-style pedestrian mall at Vail village is packed with high-end boutiques and restaurants. If you’ve come here to ski, you have the choice of more than 5,200 acres (2,080 hectares) and around 190 trails at the largest ski resort in the country.
The Nordic Centers cater for cross-country skiers, and outside winter the wilderness area is crisscrossed with hiking and cycling tracks.
Vail is around 100 miles (161 km) east of Aspen on the I-70, an approximately two-hour drive.